We could hardly imagine a better way to end this year’s Osloworld than arranging a performance by the grand dame of flamenco, Carmen Linares, and the dancing legend Javier Baron – at the Oslo Opera’s main stage! The two have collaborated extensively through their project Remebranzas, which is also the name of Linares’ latest album. What they have to offer is no less than world-class flamenco, through both cante (vocals) and baile (dance).
In their intensely energetic and passionate performance, a strongly emotional atmosphere is conveyed in the space between the 64- year old Carmen’s longing, almost hoarse, voice and Javier’s rapid, agile movements on stage. Through voice and dance they manage to pinpoint that nerve and spirit so particular to the artform that is flamenco. You will find no sweetening pop music choruses or salable disco rhythms here: this is flamenco in its purest form, accompanied only by guitar and rhytmical handclapping.
The Remembranzas lyrics are based on lyrics by poets such as Federico García Lorca, Juan Ramon Jimenez and Miguel Hernandez. In this musical form lyrics play an important part. Carmen Linares is an undisputed master of summoning all sorts of emotions in her song and take the audience in the palm of her hand – be it in a small Sevillan flamenco club or at Oslo’ Opera.
Text: Kristian Krohg-Sørensen