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San Miguel, Gitano y Flamenco

By Ian Iracheta

The presence of gypsy and flamenco culture in San Miguel de Allende is truly undeniable. One needs but walk through the streets under the moonlight to listen to the sounds that pay vigil to the night, to recognize the influence of Arab design in fountains and windows, and to contemplate the lofty image of the Parroquia, designed by Don Zeferino Gutiérrez in the 19th century, a man of both Otomí and Gypsy blood. During the ’90s, a Mexican-born bailaora of Gypsy origin arrived in this flamenco city, and started dancing with the poetic name of Ángela la Yerbabuena. And like spearmint, she  grew onto the principal stages of the city, commencing with—nomen est omen—the Ángela Peralta Theater.

Dancing, Music, and Singing
“Gitanerias” Flamenco
By Angela Garcia Esperón
Thu, Jan 25, 7pm
Teatro Ángela Peralta
Mesones 82, Centro
Luneta 350 pesos, Palcos 250 pesos, Galería 150 pesos
Tickets at the theater box office

Trained in the differing and complementary schools of Pilar Rioja and Patricia Linares and collaborating with the Jerez-born cantaor Tony Rey, la Yerbabuena enkindled the flamenco life of the city at the same time as she founded the first formal academy of flamenco in it, which bore the name of La Cueva del Duende.

Many generations of students took the vibrant classes taught by the bailaora. Girls who have now grown into women learned to dance sevillanas and alegrías, soleares, and bulerías, thanks to her. Furthermore, pooling together her talent with that of the bailaor Alfredo Enríquez, la Yerbabuena created the entourage Junta Flamenca, a company that undertook countless tours through the roads of Guanajuato and which has since changed its name to Mi Luna Flamenca.

More than twenty years of flamenco art in San Miguel culminate now in a spectacle called “Gitanerías,” a show that Mi Luna Flamenca will exhibit on January 25 at the Ángela Peralta Theater. Among the members of the ensemble, you will see Ángela la Yerbabuena and Alfredo Enríquez, an intense and expert bailaor who steals the hearts of his audience. On the guitar, the splendid Gerardo Amador, a composer and genius interpreter, will dazzle the crowd with his talent, and Victor Monterrubio, a passionate and precise artist who has become an icon in this city when it comes to percussion. We shall also enjoy the presence of Alberto Solis, al cante, and Juan Ramírez, guitarist, two young flamenco artists from Queretaro, and other members of spectacular cuadro flamenco.

Flamenco is an art of encounters and fusion. Its highest and purest attribute is precisely its impurity, how it welcomes with open arms differences, how it includes everything that is unlike itself as long as it is able to summon “el duende,” that mysterious power that we all feel and that it is unnecessary and impossible to explain. San Miguel de Allende possesses the same characteristics of inclusion as flamenco. Because of this, our city is the best of all possible stages. On the evening of January 25 at the Ángela Peralta Theater, everyone who sees the spectacle put on by Ángela la Yerbabuena will be able to live to the fullest the unforgettable treat of her “Gitanerías.”

 

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