Letters from Madrid – 3rd Flamenco Show

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Laurie dancing Tangos with a hat. I’m accompanying her on guitar during a show in the Old Church in Corrales, NM in the 1990’s. This was before we went to Spain.

After the first two flamenco shows we saw in Madrid, we were starting see how shows that featured singers and guitarists where staged and arranged, and the third show with Moraito Chico, Fernando de la Morena, La Macanita, Moraito Hijo (Diego del Marao), and Dieguito de la Margara was no different.

 

18 April 1996

Flamenco
The thrid flamenco show was really fun also. It started with Moraito Chico, the guitarist, a tall thin man, with greased hair and oval rimmed glasses playing a solo, seguiraya. Then Fernando de la Morena, one of the featured singers, came out and sang occapela. He was an older man who wore a double breasted suit and sang with a loud, low voice He made great faces, and there was dead silence during the pauses in the letra, which he broke as he attacked the next phrase with the full force of his voice. This contrast was very beautiful. He walked off the stage, and a few minutes later Moraito Chico returned with 3 palmeros. After situating themselves, a slightly large woman, but not fat, with a round pretty face, thick red lips, jet black eyes and black hair pulled back on her head, wearing a fire red dress, appeared on the stage. This was La Macanita and she had a wide smile and brilliant white teeth framed by her pretty red lips. She was greeted with “La gitana guapa!” from the audience as she walked on the stage.

Her voice was low and sultry, not really powerful. She made slightly pained facial expression, pointed into the crowd, stretched both arms in front, moving them to her side and then she would elegantly place both hands over her heart as she closed a stanza. She turned her head slightly towards the guitarist as he filled the spaces between the letras, allowing the audience to gaze upon her pretty face, and comely features of her head. When she finished a song she would dart up out of her chair and take a few steps toward moving off stage, then stop and bow and signal for the guitarist to stand and bow. She sang a soleares, zambra, and bularias.

She, the guitarist and palmeros left the stage. In a few minutes Moraito Hijo, another guitarist, Fernando de la Morena, and three plameros appeared on stage. Moraito Hijo, who is a nephew or some other relation to Moraito Chico, was tall, very young between 18 and 22, and obviously not as experienced a player as Moraito Chico. He was obviously very nervous, and he slouched over the guitar, a strange position from the very straight posture of most of the guitarists we’ve seen perform. He started playing with the very basic most simple notes, chords and style possible. He also arrived at the cords slightly ahead of the singer (out of nervousness and obviously inexperience). As he played he became more confortable and the playing was better. The singer sat with his feet together, his hands on his thighs and a serious expression on his face, it was very powerful. He sang a soleares, seguiraya, fandangos grande and bularias. During the bularias Dieguito de la Margara, who was one of the palmeros, came out and danced. I learned later, from Angel Torres, that Dieguito de la Margara danced until he was 14 years old, then became a professional soccer player. He retired at age 30 and is now back to dancing.

The second set included both guitairsts, the two singers, three palmeros and Dieguito de la Margara. La Macanita sang a bularias, danced a little and came out and sang to the audiance from the edge of the stage without a mic. This caused a bit of alarm among the guitarist who abviously could not hear her over the monitors. They made the best of it and she finished her letra and danced off the stage. She came back out, set down and Fernando sang a bularias. During his letra each of the palmeros came out and danced, Dieguito de la Margara danced, and then the La Macanita danced with Dieguito de la Margara and they dance off stage. The audince brought everyone back for an encore during which Fernando took Moraito Chico’s giutar from him and made him dance. He actually danced very well, did a couple of nice moves and then danced off with the group moving his hips in that sassy bularias style. It was really fun.

 

To be continued with the fourth flamenco show…

 
Videos
Moraito Chico – Seguiriyas.wmv https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xV2EBQAsI9I

Moraíto Chico & Fernando de la Morena https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_-B8rWQYIg8

Fernando de la Morena – fandango grande! 2015 (en la Garcia Lorca) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nZbfDXQSEH8

Canta; La Macanita Guitarra; Moraito Chico Bulería por Soleá https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VKKvi20BzO0

La Macanita, Parrilla y Moraito – Tangos https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RD6NTgqn-NY

BAILANDO-MACANITA-PARRILLA Y MORAITO https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FebNWmD-J18

DIEGO DEL MORAO – Del Cuartichi https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHUJSnsPia0 (Moraito Hijo)

Dieguito el de La Margara https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aemwZLp7dEo (documentary when he was 14)

Jesus Mendez, Diego del Morao, Moraito y Diego de Margara – Bulerias https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lCJjuYzg2gw (Diego de Margara as an adult dances near the end)

 

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14 thoughts on “Letters from Madrid – 3rd Flamenco Show

  1. That is a beautiful photo of you and Laurie! These detailed accountings of your interests and the people around you are wonderful to read. I do hope you compile these into a book.

    I am still in awe of the educational and cultural environment you and Laurie provided for Tristan.

  2. Your time in Spain has certainly come up in casual conversation over the years, but I’m really appreciating the opportunity for the detail you are providing here.
    From today’s videos, I understand about “palmas.” The ones I enjoyed most today were with the woman singer. My favorite in this series of videos so far is the one from yesterday – I really like that one.

    • PS – I love the image with Laurie dancing and you playing. Was yesterday’s image also from the Old Church before you went to Spain?

    • Thanks, Susan. I’m trying to find the best example videos. It’s nice that I can find these performers on Youtube.

    • In the beginning of May they have celebrations of Dos de Mayo in Plaza Dos De Mayo. Then they used to have a week long celebration for San Ysidro the days leading up to May 15th. When we were there there were lots of free concerts during both Dos de Mayo and the San Ysidro festival, but that was 20 years ago.

  3. So far I’ve only watched the videos with Fernando de la Morena. he sings with such authority, that’s really impressive! I didn’t know any of the musicians you’ve mentioned in this post, although I’d heard about Moraíto Chico and Diego del Morao before

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