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‘A lot of possibilities’: Online Festival Flamenco features 60 artists from Spain, 40 from US

The Festival Flamenco Albuquerque 2020 poster is by Zahra Marwan, an Albuquerque-based artist. (Courtesy of the National Institute of Flamenco)

Each June, Albuquerque becomes a hub for flamenco.

For decades, the National Institute of Flamenco has put on Festival Flamenco Alburquerque.

This year, the event will be held online.

“When we had to cancel the festival due to the pandemic, we looked at adapting the festival in compliance with safety guidelines,” says Marisol Encinias, NIF executive director. “We continued to develop the support for the programming.”

This year’s festival will appear completely online, from Friday, June 12, to June 20.

The complete schedule can be found at

Encinias says the festival will feature more than 60 artists from Spain and 40 from the United States.

Encinias says the festival has being a source of inspiration for years.

“My mother (Eva Encinias Sandoval) started the festival as a way to have a connection and build a bridge to the incredible artists that live in Spain,” she says. “I was looking for a way to continue to find that inspiration. As I started speaking to artists, they were telling me that the festival has been ‘una luz,’ or a ray of hope, for them artistically. We’re very lucky and blessed that these artists admire the festival.”

The festival opens at 7 p.m. Friday, June 12, with a performance by the NIF’s ensemble, Yjastros.

The performance, “Desde la Calle,” features repertory works by today’s most influential flamenco choreographers staged in various dynamic settings, meeting the challenges of performing in a time in which traditional venues are closed.

On Saturday, June 13, Pedro Córdoba, Inmaculada Aranda and Olga Llorente perform from the Tablao Las Carboneras in Madrid, Spain.

On Sunday, June 14, is a night of guitar featuring Diego Del Morao, Jesús de Rosario, Jesús Guerrero and Juan Campallo.

On Monday, June 15, “Noche de Jerez y Granada” will feature Miguel Angel Heredia, Saray García, Juan Andrés Maya and Iván Vargas.

The single performances are $20, and after your purchase, a code will be sent to you to view the event. It will remain available for 24 hours.

Encinias Sandoval says that the pandemic slowed down the world but that it’s starting to ramp up again.

“We are starving for art, social interaction,” she says. “I think it will be received very well. For the artists themselves, there are a lot of possibilities. I’ve been seeing Marisol interact with the artists themselves. She’s having to negotiate with each individual artist. It’s been incredible to see the excitement grow for the event.”

Festival Flamenco will also have opportunities to learn dance, guitar, cante and palmas from professionals. The fees start around $45 for the master classes.

Encinias says there will be five panels and lectures during the event.

The first one will be with Encinias Sandoval at 5:30 p.m. Friday, June 12.

Encinias Sandoval will talk about building a flamenco community in New Mexico.

The lectures and panels are free and open to the public, but you must register to receive a link for the online conversation.

“The festival brings the beauty of flamenco to the masses,” Encinias Sandoval says. “We’ve been able to get some artists in this year’s festival for the first time because it can be done online. It’s opened up many opportunities for us to provide another excellent festival.”

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