February 11, 2005 |
At age 34, flamenco star Sara Baras doesn't dance with the weight of the art's resident sibyls or earth mothers. Nor does she embody private passions and the pride of the Gypsy underclass. No, at UCLA's Royce Hall on Wednesday, Baras danced for pleasure, connecting with her audience through eye contact and gestures -- even blowing kisses at one point.
February 6, 2005 |
Her long, dark hair pulled back severely, Sara Baras moves sinuously to the gentle rhythms of two guitars, a revealing red dress swirling around her. Having dispensed with traditional flamenco's cumbersome ruffled skirt, ornate hair combs and enormous flowered shawl, the 34-year-old dancer expresses age-old passions with an exhilarating freedom. A spotlight follows her as she curves her hands in graceful arabesques, while the singers accompanying her raise their voices in plaintive cries.
October 4, 2004 |
Heroic passion, devastating loss and a belief in the power of art make the ancient Greek myth of Orpheus an ideal subject for a flamenco dance drama. In what other idiom is every step so weighted with the fragility of human happiness and the inevitability of doom? Unfortunately, Compania Domingo Ortega's new "Orfeo" kept going awry at the John Anson Ford Amphitheatre on Saturday: missing opportunities, failing to develop its best ideas and trivializing the most profound hallmarks of its source.
September 28, 2003 |
Juan VERDU, a graying bohemian with a lean, quixotic look, knows the secret places haunted by the ghosts of flamenco. He strolls across the lively Plaza Santa Ana in the heart of this Spanish capital, an area once frequented by intellectuals, bullfighters and the poet Federico Garcia Lorca. Past sidewalk cafes, he comes to Los Gabrieles, a historic bar and tourist stop famed for its walls of colorful ceramic mosaics.
August 12, 2002 |
Oppressive pain, heroic defiance, percussive footwork as a tribal drum: The annual New World Flamenco Festival opened with primal statements of traditional Spanish Gypsy culture over the weekend at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. In a 90-minute program of solos performed without intermission, Compania Juana Amaya of Seville focused on the tension between showpiece virtuosity and emotional expression.
September 12, 2001 |
This Carmen is driven by politics as well as passion. She fights for the rights of women and her fellow cigarette workers. She sings Andalusian folk songs and dances with a horse. And she expresses herself best, not through voice, but through flamenco. A new, radical "Carmen" was scheduled to receive its American premiere this week in a production by a troupe of Spanish dancers and musicians, La Cuadra de Sevilla, at City Center.