Las Minas Puerto Flamenco opens at the Lyric Theatre, Gold Reef City Casino, Johannesburg, for one performance only on Wednesday 24 May, 2017.
I spoke to Flautist, Oscar De Manuel about the Essence of Flamenco.
When were you first introduced to Flamenco?
“I started with Flamenco in 2000, and as a result of receiving the “Filon” award for Best Flamenco Instrumentalist in the International Festival of Cante De Las Minas, I was able to grow as an artist with different artistic presentations.”
Why is it such an important part of who you are?
“My constant preoccupation with having to write, transcribe and adapt Flamenco to symphonic writing or teaching for conservatories has become my daily life. It is my way of life and understanding. Flamenco is an oral tradition. It conveys the true essence of the moment. Those who practice and perform it on a regular basis come to know the “duende” or magical spirit, concealed within the purest soul of flamenco.”
Why did you choose the flute?
“From the age of 6, I wanted to play the flute, and since then it has been, and always will be, my “travelling companion”. In writing symphonic flamenco, I have found a fun way to break the “rules” of composing and playing my instrument.”
What does it take to be a Flamenco musician: the artistry, the technique, the style?
“The flamenco flute can bring freshness, compass, interpretive power, interiorisation, memory and the ability to develop a perfect musical ear. It can contribute that ‘spark’ that is sometimes extinguished after a sad score that does not find that total freedom of interpretation or reinterpretación; and you can also show different ways to emulate guitars, cantaores and bailaore with the flute, looking for the right sound-path for each flamenco club that you play and know. My five books teach the methodology of the melodic instruments in Bb, C, Eb and Clef F.”
What is it about the show: Las Minas Puerto Flamenco, that is so special to you?
“It has given me the opportunity to play in the best theatres in the world, with a great company of artists, technicians and production team. Travelling to Japan, India, Mexico, South Africa, and other countries.”
Do you have a particularly favourite scene or piece of music in the show and why?
“For me it is the soleá, for its purity and pace, it transports me to another dimension. La Seguiriya is the soul of the show!”
Watch the “Flamenco Flute” here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOvKzomWP44
To read more about the show and the interview with Aurelio Solana, the CEO of the Show, got to: http://www.bsharpentertainment.co.za/aurelio-solana/