This Saturday, Northwest Folklife and Crossroads Bellevue have programmed an incredible cultural evening with La Peña Flamenca de Seattle! We sat down with Rubina Carmona to get an inside look at all that is La Peña Flamenca and more – take a read!
RC: La Peña Flamenca de Seattle was formed in 1995 as a performance opportunity organization for the guitar, dance and singing students of my husband, Marcos Carmona and myself.
NWFL: Can you tell us a little about the cultural background of Flamenco?
RC: Flamenco music and dance come from Southern Spain, and have been developed and performed most notably by the Gypsies of that region.
NWFL: What is something you wish the greater community to know about your work?
RC: I’d like the audience to realize how international the appeal of flamenco is. I’ll be featuring dancers and musicians from Austria, Russia, Philippines, Chile, Argentina, Hong Kong, Canada and the United States.
NWFL: More specifically, what can audiences expect to see from these dancers and musicians?
RC: We will be presenting some ensemble work, with all the dancers, some short solos, and live music by guitarists and singers to accompany the dances.
NWFL: Who choreographs your work – how do you create a piece? What are your inspirations?
RC: I basically choreograph the dances, although I’m now being assisted by my advanced students. All my students have learned to choreograph their own solo material using the materials or “vocabulary” I have taught them. My inspiration is the music–the singing style determines the spirit and content of the dance. I listen to examples of singing and guitar and do what the music tells me, and my students have learned to do the same.
NWFL: How did you first come to be involved with Northwest Folklife?
RC: I have been involved with Northwest Folklife since we first moved to Seattle in 1988.
NWFL: Have you heard about the 2015 Cultural Focus (“Beats, Rhymes & Rhythms: Traditional Roots – Today’s Branches” – basically roots of hip hop) and what do you think?
RC: I have heard of this year’s cultural emphasis. The evolution of American pop music, blues, jazz, hip-hop parallels the evolution of flamenco, tango, fado, rembetiko and other “urban blues” forms around the world. The songs deal with very similar subject matter.
FOR MORE ON HOW TO SEE THIS INCREDIBLE SHOW – CLICK HERE.