This week Angela Chantry gave a most interesting talk regarding Carmen Amaya who started life as a poor gypsy girl living in a deprived slum area of Barcelona who became the most celebrated female flamenco dancer.
She has been called “the greatest Spanish Romany dancer of her generation”and “the most extraordinary personality of all time in flamenco dance”. She was the first female flamenco dancer to master footwork previously reserved for the best male dancers, due to its speed and intensity. She sometimes danced in high-waisted trousers as a symbol of her strong character.
After fleeing the Civil War with members of her family and achieving considerable success and fame in many South American countries Carmen Amaya moved to the United States where she met many of the most important personalities in cinema, music and culture.
She also met President Roosevelt before moving to perform in Paris and later in England where she met the Queen.
She became a star in many films which celebrated her outstanding flamenco talent.
Her enormous success continued until she was struck down by severe illness and eventually died in Girona in 1963 aged only 45. During the last ten years of her life, she lived surrounded by people and was almost sanctified, not only by her audience, but also by those who worked with her.
Members of the Art & History Group audience greatly enjoyed Angela’s presentation.
The Art & History Group welcomes all members to the lectures which are held every fortnight at the La Senieta theatre in Moraira.
Visit the Art and History Talks group page.