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‘Jordan’s stability puts it on global map for artists, performers’

By Muath Freij - Mar 07,2015 - Last updated at Mar 07,2015

Spanish flamenco dancers perform on stage at the Cultural Palace in Amman on Friday (Photo by Muath Freij)

AMMAN — Jordan’s stability and security encourages global artists to perform in the country, and showcase their art and culture to the Jordanian public, according to a Spanish flamenco dancer.

Jesús Carmona, a renowned Spanish flamenco performer, on Friday said the Kingdom’s stability is an important element to encourage artists to visit the country.

“This encourages us to perform because we feel safe here and we feel like this is one of the countries we can come to and visit. It does not mean that we do not feel sorry for the neighbouring countries,” he told The Jordan Times through an interpreter. 

Carmona, together with Karime Amaya and Carlos Rodríguez in addition to several Spanish musicians, performed their Gala Flamenca show in the capital on Friday, organised by Friends of Jordan Festival (FJF). 

Carmona said he and his fellow performers thought the Jordanian audience deserved to see this show. 

Gala Flamenca is a flamenco festival that brings together the most famous dancers in Spain and this show has been held in several cities in the world, according to organisers.

“We have been travelling around the world, including Hong Kong, Shanghai and London, and we hope the Jordanian people enjoy [the performance] as much as other audiences did,” Carmona said an hour before the show began. 

He noted that flamenco as any other art can help people forget the fear and pressure they deal with especially in regions like the Middle East.

“Of course not only flamenco but any art is a way of expression and art comes from the heart,” Carmona added.

Performers interviewed by The Jordan Times stressed that flamenco helps them express their feelings and is also a way of life for them. 

Amaya, the grand niece of legendary dancer Carmen Amaya, described flamenco as her “life”. 

She noted that Friday’s show was a good opportunity to promote flamenco in the Middle East.

The art of flamenco has developed over the years because it has been mixed with other disciplines and evolved with time, according to Rodríguez.

“There are many young people taking part in the art of flamenco because it is a way of expressing yourself and it flows from the soul,” he noted. 

Rodríguez said flamenco is part of his life “because it is like a sort of therapy and makes you express things that you cannot say with words. I chose it as a way of living and it is a... profession.”  

FJF Executive Director Souha Bawab said flamenco is beloved and known globally and locally.

“Whenever there is a flamenco show, it is attended by many Jordanians,” she added, noting that Friday’s performance was unique because it brought together contemporary and classical flamenco in one show. 

“This show tours important cities all over the world and hosting such an event in Jordan means that the country has its place on the international art map,” she added. 

“Artists like to visit Jordan and perform here.”

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