Estrella Morente, the singer from Granada, has visited Oslo World before. When she opened the festival in 2007, she was already one of the biggest names on the flamenco scene. She had, among other things, received a Latin Grammy for her latest album, and she had provided Penelope Cruz with a striking singing voice in the film “Volver” by Pedro Almodovar. None of this was totally unexpected. Her family is full of practitioners of this music, both musicians and dancers – most notably her own father, Enrique Morente, a legendary and controversial trailblazer in modern flamenco.
Estrella has chosen another, slightly less experimental path. Her music is in no way hermetically sealed from contemporary sounds, but she has still chosen to look back. Estrella Morente shows us that truly great artists can breathe freely wherever they roam – also within the confines of tradition. The way she has brought the subtle vocal stylings of legendary singers like Pastora Pavon back to the contemporary scene has generated an enormous response among the modern flamenco audience. “To be ‘flamenco’ is to understand life in a different way. It’s taking art by the horns of the bull and saying, ‘I will live life from the basis of art, and I am going to eat and drink that art”, she has remarked. A tall order, but for the heir to a musical dynasty, it is perhaps the only way to live.