February 24th, Skylite Station, 910 Santa Fe Drive, 7:30pm, $15
It’s probably safe to say that because of Maria Vazquez, Denver has become something of a hub for Flamenco in the US. For the past twelve years, she’s been teaching it on a daily basis to kids from 5 to 75 at her studio in the Santa Fe Arts District. She produces two big recitals a year at venues like Su Teatro and Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Theater. She also performs weekends in more intimate settings like the Mercury Café, and Lannie’s Clocktower Cabaret.
Historians differ as to the origins of Flamenco. Some claim it was carried to Spain from India by gypsies. Others argue that it grew out of the clash of cultures – Moorish, Romani, Berber, Jewish, Persian, Egyptian – that at one time or another have shared the southern portion of the Iberian Peninsula. Whatever its origins, it remains very much a part of the local scene in Seville, where Vazquez was born and raised . “All the kids, or at least the girls, do a folk dance there called the Sevillana,” she said. “It’s similar to Flamenco. It’s performed at parties and fiestas, and everybody knows how to do it.”