A Letter from the Directors

In July 2009, Peña Flamenca El Indalo presented its inaugural production of Concha Jareño & Ensemble in "Simplemente Flamenco" at The Button Factory, in Dublin's Temple Bar.

In the short time since then, our organisation has grown and developed at a rate that has surprised even us. This growth is due in no small part to the constant support and encouragement we have received from so many along the way; from institutions to individuals, from artists to aficionados. Without your help, none of this would have been possible.

The theme for Dublin Flamenco Festival - and indeed for everything that the peña has undertaken - is the building of bridges. It is a theme you will see echoed in many guises throughout the festival.

The most obvious bridge is that between Spain and Ireland, whose own traditions of song, dance and music share much in common with the cante, baile and toque of flamenco.But the festival is also about bridging the old and the new, the modern and the traditional. As with any art form as layered and complex as flamenco, evolution is inevitable perhaps even essential if the art is to endure and survive. But such evolution cannot happen in isolation. For it to succeed it must draw upon the roots of established tradition. The programmes for Dublin Flamenco Festival are very carefully chosen to celebrate both aspects of the art, and to bring the audience on a journey that connects them.

Flamenco is a rich, expressive medium that embraces song, dance and music and infuses them with depth and emotion. Unfortunately, like many lesser known art forms, it is very often misunderstood and misrepresented. This gap of understanding often results in many people missing an event that they would have enjoyed, if only they could have been persuaded to attend. In the arts, this problem is not unique to flamenco.

It is our hope that Dublin Flamenco Festival will help to bridge this gap also. Never before has such a diverse group of flamenco artists performed together in Ireland. Audiences will now have an opportunity to discover for themselves how much this artform has to offer. We truly believe there is something here for everyone, whether you are a true aficionado or someone coming to flamenco for the first time.

Dublin Flamenco Festival is both the culmination of all our work to date, and the beginning of the next phase of our organisation's development. We sincerely hope that you will join on the next leg of our journey and perhaps we can cross a few bridges together.

Damian Power, Director