Every summer, the Guadalupe Dance Company presents a new flamenco show and this summer is no different. The productions are always beautiful and professionally presented but this year’s edition may be a little extra special given that the local flamenco scene has not been very active lately. So, lovers of the fiery Andalusian art, take note: called “Without Borders”/”Sin Fronteras,” the show will have three performances this weekend, June 23-25.
As it had done before, the company once again invited Spanish flamenco choreographer Miguel Vargas to spend some time in San Antonio developing the concepts and choreography of the dances. It began with conversations about current concerns, said company artistic director Jeannette Chavez. “We started talking about what was important to us as a community in connection with refugees and immigrants and people who are already here and who live in fear,” she explained. “That was the starting point.”
The result consists of six new dances, some choreographed in traditional flamenco styles, such as cana, buleria, and petenera, while others are more contemporary in style and feel. Spoken word segments and videos will complement the conceptual presentation, which evolves from a mood of fear and struggle to finding comfort and joy in family and community, and looking toward a better future.
All the dancers are accomplished pros, including Chavez, who has been with the company since its inception, and Belinda Menchaca, long-time former company director and a very eloquent dancer. Others in the ensemble are: Denise Rios, Marlene Pita, Consuelo Espinosa and Crystal Zuniga, all outstanding flamenco artists. They’ll be joined by guitarist Steve Arispe, percussionist Edwardo Rios and San Antonio best known flamenco vocalist Chayito Champion.
The Guadalupe Dance Company, which, in addition to flamenco, performs Mexican folkloric dances, has appeared on stage with the San Antonio, Houston and Nashville symphony orchestras, and was featured on “Good Morning America,” “The Today Show” and “Despierta America,” a Univision Spanish language program.
As one who has reviewed them regularly for years, I can confidently recommend their new show. For times and tickets go to www.guadalupeculturalarts.org. For seating questions call Joel Settles at 271-3151, ext.213.