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Dance Fringe

Review: Flamenco Fiesta

Flamenco Fiesta will take you on a rhythmic journey right back to Spain.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Flamenco Fiesta will take you on a rhythmic journey right back to Spain. Set in the intimate venue of Alba Flamenco, the show immerses you into traditional Hispanic culture for 60 minutes. 

The performance starts with traditional Flamenco dances from Cadiz in Spain. The rhythmic tapping of the feet makes the complex art look effortless, accompanied by Spanish singing and guitar strumming that will whisk you away from cool Edinburgh straight into the Andalusian heat, the home of Flamenco. Originally from the Roma community in Spain, flamenco has now become a worldwide phenomenon, and is recognised by UNESCO as part of the world’s intangible heritage. 

The heat was turned up in Alba Flamenco as the male flamenco dancer performed a sensual tango dance to an upbeat and cheering audience. The performance became more of an experience than merely a spectacle for the eyes. Musical interludes between each dance also allowed the audience to soak up the Spanish atmosphere and enjoy the powerful, husky voices of the singers and lively guitar rhythms, giving the dancers time for their outfit changes. 

Through the use of different styles of dancing, the performers took us on a journey round Hispanic culture, with brief explanations of the genre and origin of each piece. Tango, the second style showcased, originates from Buenos Aires in Argentina, so the audience were given an amuse-bouche of South American culture. 

Finally, the show transported the audience to Cuba as the performers showcased a piece of Cuban Fusion music and dancing. For this piece, the female dancer changed into a white Traje de Flamenco (Flamenco dress) which provided an interesting visual effect due to its orange underlayer skirt, which she artfully drifted around her figure. The intense rhythm of the dancing combined with the powerful male voices vibrating through the intimate setting of Alba Flamenco provided a highly charged atmosphere that left the audience mesmerised by the show at hand. 

Whilst the intimate venue produced a beautifully intense atmosphere, it did mean that the show was limited to two dancers, and only a couple of singers and musicians. A slightly larger venue may have allowed for a few more dancers, allowing for greater variety of dance performance. However, the show is a spectacle for all to experience, providing a different cultural immersion to one you might find in other Fringe shows. I would highly recommend an evening of dance and musical talent at the Flamenco Fiesta, which could very conveniently be followed by a Tapas experience at the adjoining restaurant.

Flamenco Fiesta’ is at Alba Flamenco August 6-28, times vary.

Image credit: Ross Fraser McLean / StudioRoRo, provided to The Student as a press image.