Edinburgh Fringe Review: Flamenco Roots

I love the passion and intricate footwork of flamenco, so Ricardo Garcia’s Flamenco Flow show seemed like an excellent opportunity to indulge in this gorgeous Spanish style. But either few people agree with me that the dance style is beautiful or the show is little advertised, because the number of people watching on Thursday evening was so desolately few that I could count them on the fingers of one hand.

The company describe their dancing as flamenco “in its most essential and evocative form” but the influence of other styles is abundantly clear. Jazz pirouettes and belly dance hip twists are performed well but distract from the main focus of the show; it is in the pure flamenco displays that the company really excels. In these sections, the dancers’ talents are vibrant and effervescent; fans and castanets are utilised with impressive skill, complex rhythms accelerate and the flamenco guitar accompaniment is exquisite.

At other times the show feels rather more like a catwalk than a dance performance. The lead female changes outfit no less than eight times, leaving the stage frequently empty but for our musician, who although extremely talented, is not as thrilling to watch as the dancers. Flamenco Roots is an enjoyable show, but would benefit from a more simple and distinct theme where classical flamenco dance takes centre stage.

*** – 3/5 stars

Flamenco Roots is playing at theSpace at Symposium Hall until the 26 August as part of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. For more information and tickets, see the Edinburgh Fringe website.