Flamenco was cultivated in Spain over the centuries through the fusion of various cultures—namely Roma, Moorish, Jewish and Andalusian. It's a dynamic living folk art where dance, voice and guitar combine, and many styles and variations on the form are explored. Flamenco’s intensity appeals to multiple senses with complex rhythms, heartrending emotions and a riot of ruffled colors.
Albuquerque—once a colonial Spanish village—is considered the flamenco capital of the United States. In fact, the University of New Mexico is the only school in the world where a dancer can earn a degree that emphasizes flamenco. In 1987, UNM's College of Fine Arts partnered with the National Institute of Flamenco (located Downtown on Gold) to found the Festival Flamenco Internacional de Albuquerque. Now in its 25th year, the week-long silver jubilee—and observation of New Mexico's Spanish ancestry—is bustling with activity. Its cornucopian offerings include 25 workshops, a free academic research symposium, youth programming and kids camp, and daily performances by local (namely, Yjastros: The American Flamenco Repertory Company) and international artists, including some of Spain's biggest stars (Pastora Galván, Olga Pericet, Adela y Rafael Campallo).
The festivities will take place at UNM and the National Hispanic Cultural Center from Sunday, June 10, to Saturday, June 16. Visit ffi25.org for schedules and to buy tickets.