Flamenco enhances the tourist experience
A study by the University of Cordoba highlights the importance of music in general and flamenco in particular, when it comes to picking a place as a holiday destination
At the end of September 2020, Expoflamenco wrote about a study by the University of Cordoba that sought to establish the relationship between flamenco and tourism in Spain, With that goal in mind, a group of the University of Cordoba focusing of Tourism Economy prepared a survey with eighteen questions, covering topics from musical tastes to the emotions felt when listening to flamenco.
Millions of tourists come to Spain every year seeking the sun, the ocean, the beaches and good food. Yet, is flamenco also a major draw? Flamenco is the heart and soul of Spain, particularly in Andalusia, and this has become apparent in the preliminary results of this report.
The data speaks by itself. Music is an important factor when it comes to pick and choose a travel destination. Nowadays, tourism has had to evolve to focus more on intangible aspects, those things that cannot be touched but are rather experienced, to keep pace with globalization.
«The tourism policy in places where flamenco is part of the local identity must develop it and highlight it as a motivating factor for travelling, allowing the tourist to feel it, not just by watching and listening to it, but by experiencing it» (Lucía García, University of Córdoba)
A total of 527 respondents forwarded their answers between September and October 2020. The participants were residents of Spain and foreign countries. The results showed that «eighty percent of those surveyed stated that music was an important factor as a motivation for travelling».
Those numbers show the importance of the arts as tourist attraction. A similar percentage of respondents agreed that it was important to visit places known for their music association, such as bars, theaters and tablaos. Those surveyed highlighted four important elements when seeking to experience flamenco: the talent of the artists, the artistic merit of live shows, the quality of guitar playing and the quality of baile.
«Those results confirm the increasing importance of this kind of tourism, musical tourism, which becomes an important market niche for different tourism destinations», explained Lucía García, one of the researchers of the Tourism Economy group, in a statement for Europa Press.
The study emphasizes the emotional element of cultural heritage that reflects the history and the traditions that drive personality and collective identity. The report also showed that certain destinations were more appealing for tourists if flamenco was featured.
«The tourism policy in places where flamenco is part of the local identity must develop it and highlight it as a motivating factor for travelling, allowing the tourist to feel it, not just by watching and listening to it, but by experiencing it», stated the researcher Lucía García.
Although it may not be the number one reason why tourists travel to a place, musical tourism is important. It adds authenticity of the tourist experience, particularly when the main reason tourists have for coming is the sunny skies. The results show that flamenco enhances the appeal of tourism destinations and in that sense the Covid-19 restrictions are not helping. It is one more reason to support flamenco, its artists and all venues that showcase this art form.