Art in all its forms has the potential of reaching on occasion a point of alchemy between interpreter and audience able to transport them into a mysterious level of emotion; a red-hot status capable of making them abandon any concern about who or where they are and just immerse themselves in the experience they cannot describe. As García Lorca would say, “…the most appropriate field” (for that quality to appear) “is, naturally, in music, dance and spoken poetry, as these need a live body to interpret them, because they are forms that are born and die in a perpetual mode, and design the boundaries of their expression in an exact present… Each step any man, any artist, whether his name is Nietzsche o Cézanne, climbs up the tower of his own perfection, is determined by the fight he constantly sustains…” within himself in order to attain that quality.
On the rare occasion when that point is reached during flamenco action, it is said that the “duende” is among us… Flamenco performers never talk about it; nevertheless they are always in pursuit of the inspiration that will allow them to get there, reaching total involvement in the art and deep communion with the audience.
If that elusive state can be referred to as the core of the art of flamenco, artists will use, in order to ‘touch’ it, all the ingredients available to them from their musical discipline: modal zones, razor-sharp rhythmic patterns, spontaneity, which is vital for the music to ‘live’; improvisation, which plays a critical part in searching within yourself for elements that will help you ‘forge’ the piece as you go along trying to make performances unique and satisfying every time; plus a compound of qualities that their experience has provided them, whether in the emotional field, community living, customs, traditions, icons and, in short, everything that has taught them how and what makes that music be what it is. Well…all those things, plus the character with which they are displayed amount to…Flamencura