A brand of premium quality flamenco is created in Seville
The brand ‘Authentic Flamenco Quality Establishments’ is the result of an alliance among four of the best tablaos of Seville: Museo del Baile Flamenco, Casa de la Memoria, Tablao el Arenal and Teatro Flamenco Triana
The label Authentic Flamenco Quality Establishments was presented in the morning of October 8th in Seville. Authorities, media, artists, entrepreneurs and promoters of flamenco attended this event. They were summoned by four of the most important tablaos in Seville: Casa de la Memoria, Tablao El Arenal, Teatro Flamenco Triana and Museo del Baile Flamenco, where this event took place.
Those tablaos have formed an alliance to protect authentic, high-quality flamenco, setting themselves apart from the substantial amount of commercial flamenco available in the city. The fact that the brand is written in English gives us the first clue: it’s an attempt to appeal to the international market and convince the big tourism operators that Seville is the best destination to enjoy authentic, high-quality flamenco.
This event was presented by the coordinator of this alliance, Álvaro Romero, who gave the floor to bailaora Cristina Hoyos, the driving force behind the Museo del Baile Flamenco: «We all know that flamenco is in constant evolution, and it reinvents itself artistically every year. It’s important that the organizers and managers of flamenco find formulas that meet the expectations of the public». In her closing remarks, the artists stated that «this alliance seeks to reinforce the image of Seville as the world capital of flamenco».
Afterward, the floor was taken by Kurt Grötsch, director of the Museo del Baile Flamenco Cristina Hoyos, who started by saying that Seville is aware of being world capital of flamenco. However, when someone from England, France or Germany seeks a flamenco tourist destination, they often pick Madrid or Barcelona. There’s a long way to go. The formula more flamenco = better for Seville is wrong and doesn’t satisfy the international public. Seville must definitely bet on premium tourism. The proposal of our alliance goes in that direction. While some people do flamenco for tourists, we do flamenco with the tourists».
Alexandra Hoffer is the artistic director of the Fundación Cristina Heeren and, thus, of the Triana Flamenco Theater too. She defended the formula of the alliance as a way stand up to the flamenco commercialization that plagues the city. «There has been a massification of this art genre. Bars, restaurants and nightclubs are offering flamenco of a very questionable quality».
Enrique Escalante then took the floor as director of the mythical Tablao el Arenal, which was opened by Curro Vélez in 1976. He recalled that Chiquetete, El Culata and Antonio Mairena performed in the night of that opening, «That’s how Tablao El Arenal got started, and it has continued on that path for its 43 years of history, promoting and caring for quality flamenco. That’s why we are part of this alliance». He also presented the first collaboration of this alliance, Programa 20×2, where admission to any of the venues of the alliance grants a 20% discount in the admittance to any of the other three venues.
Rosana de Aza, owner and director of Casa de la Memoria, explained that the formula of the alliance is like a consortium, a word which etymologically means partners who share the same luck. Rosana pointed out that «it’s not the same organizing flamenco shows than pursuing excellence. We believe that this is the right moment for joining forces to be stronger, to better promote what we do, and to be ready for that premium tourism which, due to it’s financial and cultural value, is the one which should grow in Seville because it favors this city the most».
This event ended with a performance of baile flamenco «as an example of the high quality we pursue», said Álvaro Romero. El Choro and Rocío Alcaide, danced por martinetes and por seguiriyas, joined by the guitar of Eugenio Iglesias and the wonderful voice of Juan José Amador.
Bailaores Rocío Alcaide and El Choro in the presentation of the alliance «Authentic Flamenco Quality Establishments» at the Museo del Baile Flamenco on October 8th, 2019. Photo: perezventana