The Center for the Performing Arts at Penn State is set to host what is seen as the most authentic flamenco touring company of this day and age, according to the company’s website.
“Noche Flamenca” — featuring New York Dance and Performance award winner Soledad Barrio — will be performed Saturday night.
The show is a “story of love,” Director Martín Santangelo said. It’s about two people who are trying to meet, he said.
“Noche Flamenca” has toured all over the world and has become the most successful touring company in Spain. It was formed in 1993 by Santangelo and Barrio.
The style of flamenco dancing was derived in Andalucía, a region in southern Spain. In its creation, it pulled influence from the Roman, Jewish, Gypsy and Moor culture.
The show is “a real wonderful catharsis,” Santangelo said. It is emotional and devastating, he said.
Santangelo said the cast performs many different numbers, one being a group performance. The inspiration for this section came from poems written by children living in refugees, he said.
“[The performers] express their poetry,” he said.
The performance features musicians and singers, said Laura Sullivan, marketing and communications director at CPA.
Sullivan said she saw the show in New York in 2011 and she “really enjoyed the combination of dance and music.”
“[You] get lost in the whole performance,” she said. “Soledad Barrio is one of the world’s best flamenco dancers.”
Cante, meaning song, is a large part of the performance, Sullivan said.
“[It is] the heart and soul of this genre,” she said.
The performance is “intensely passionate” and “intimate,” she said. “Noche Flamenca” is composed of a small group on stage, Sullivan said.
“The show is a feast for the eyes and ears,” she said.
President of the Ballroom Dancing Club at Penn State Jessica Preston said that she thinks it is interesting that such a cultural performance is coming to Penn State.
Preston (senior-animal sciences) said the ballroom dancing club thinks it’s important and fun to learn difference genres of dancing from many different areas.
“I think it’s really great that Penn State can bring many diverse dance shows,” she said. “[It’s] a really great thing for people to experience different cultures. [It’s] good for anyone interested in music or fashion of other cultures [as well].”
“Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca” will perform at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday. The show is at Eisenhower Auditorium, which is located on Curtain Road and Shortlidge Road on Penn State’s campus.
Tickets can be purchased online at CPA’s website, by calling 814-863-0255, or at the door.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for an hour-long session called Artistic Viewpoints. During this hour, Santangelo will be speaking.
The performance lasts between 75 and 85 minutes with no intermission.