Flamenco, an art form brimming with vibrancy and expression, traces its origins to the sun-kissed Andalusian region of Spain. It seamlessly intertwines music, song, dance, and culture, becoming a profound embodiment of Spanish heritage and passion. For an authentic Flamenco encounter, ‘Gestalguinos’ stands as an unrivalled venue. In a sleepy corner of old town, tucked away from the hustle of tourists, the cosy bar exudes charm. Stepping into Gestalguinos feels like you are entering a truly special and soulful night. Adorned with an eclectic array of art, its walls breathe life, while the air hums with the warmth of friendly faces.
Flamenco music typically features intricate guitar playing, rhythmic handclaps known as “palmas,” percussive footwork, and emotive singing. The singing, known as “cante,” often reflects themes of love, pain, longing, and the struggles of everyday life. The guitar, or “guitarra,” provides both accompaniment and intricate melodies that enhance the emotional depth of the performance.
As is tradition, three Spanish performers took centre stage amidst a room filled with as many chairs as possible: a singer, a guitarist, and a percussionist on the cajon. The acoustic set resonated with raw emotion from each and every instrument, with the soulful vocals transcending linguistic barriers. The palmas of the professionals received back up from clicks, claps and taps from across the familiar audience who would occasionally sing along, creating a symphony of Spanish sounds within the humble confines of the bar.
As the night progressed, additional instruments found their place on the makeshift “stage” at the front of the room. A flute, extra guitars, additional singers, and harmonising voices from the crowd infused the space with energy, animating the already bustling atmosphere as latecomers trickled into the packed room.
Just when the evening seemed to be drawing to a close, one more song would emerge from the repertoire, each different from the last, evoking a whirlwind of emotions. As a newcomer to both the bar and flamenco, it felt like the perfect Spanish speakeasy to experience a tradition with deep cultural roots in Spain.
‘Gestalguinos’ hosts a flamenco night every Wednesday. Information can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/Gestalguinos
Report by Abi Kara-Fernandes
Article copyright ‘24/7 Valencia’
‘Gestalguinos’ photo copyright Sebastian Garraway/ ’24/7 Valencia’
Carrer del Poeta Liern, 33
Tel: 96 049 30 07