Sydney, Sydney Fringe Festival 2014

Bandaluzia Flamenco, SFF 2014

0 Comments 28 September 2014

Sydney-based Bandaluzia Flamenco played a captivating show to a full house at Venue 505. It was easy to see how the ensemble has been praised for their contemporary Australian interpretation of the flamenco style. The acoustic guitar featured as a solo introduction and drew the audience in with a sparse number that emphasised the precision of the performer and the tonal quality of the instrument. The show developed to demonstrate a multiplicity of stylistic pieces including richer that provided passionate and heart-stopping dramatic climaxes. When the full seven-piece ensemble was on stage, there was an incredible depth of sound that incorporated a variety of instruments including the mandolin, bass guitar and piano.

Bandaluzia Flamenco featured a lot of improvisation, and while the songs were long, the variations on themes sustained audience interest and broke up any sense of repetition that was inherent in the style. The extremes in dynamics built so seamlessly that they were only noticeable in the pauses leading into the next melodic sequences. The use of percussion – clapping and playing off a drum-like box – emphasised the syncopation in the music. The sporadic shouts, that became part of the music, were exciting, and gave the melodies a momentum into the next phrase. The ensemble were engaged in the moment, following each other’s solos with small rhythmic movements, which seemed to mimic the audience’s desire to dance.

The dancing was a hypnotising visual interest, with the constant twirling contributing to a mesmerising effect. The dancers provided an incredible depth of emotion in their movements and while they focused the audience’s attention, the music was not a mere accompaniment to them and each element of the performance complimented the other. There was great variety in the emphasis of each dance, with fun and energised pieces contrasting the more sombre and gentler performances. Dramatic pauses in the music accentuated the hand gestures of the dancers and their drive built up through complicated footwork.

The audience loved Bandaluzis Flamenco: the precise execution of the dance was alluring and the music accentuated this appeal, demonstrating the sensual nature of the flamenco sound.


Reviewed by Lily Mei.

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This post was written by who has written 4 posts on Buzzcuts.

Lily is an editor of Vertigo Magazine and a volunteer at the Sydney Story Factory. You can find her stories on Stilts, Scum-Mag and New Matilda.

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