Guitar: Diego del Morao and Antonio Rey. Second guitar: Fernando Carrasco (Diego del Morao) and Manuel Urbina (Antonio Rey). Percussion: Ané Carrasco. Rhythm: Juan Grande and Juan Diego (Diego del Morao). Teatro Lope de Vega. September 23rd, 2018. Nearly full house.
One is the spark, the other, the embers. One is the guts, the other, heart. One is velocity, the other, profound melody. One the idea, the discovery. The other, the reflection, the search. One is light manzanilla wine, the other, sweet oloroso. Both fresh, personal and sharp. Two of the best guitarists of current flamenco.
On Sunday at the Lope de Vega theater, Diego del Morao and Antonio Rey demonstrated the far-reaching universe today offered by the flamenco guitar in one of the best recitals seen so far in this Bienal. From two completely different aesthetics – more than sharing the program they should have been presented individually – they explored the combining of aromas, colors and tastes hidden in the six strings managing to captivate the audience for the two hours the concert lasted.
Diego del Morao, the first to come on, was appreciated from the outset thanks to his natural playing that immediately infects you with the urge to sit down by his side. Because, in addition to his frenetic sound and the fire he lights with a single strum, the man from Jerez has tremendous communicative power because he offers friendly, enjoyable, easy-listening music with which he gives continuity to the smile he always wears on stage, and makes the time fly. He was especially involved in the bulerías devoted to his father Moraíto, showing that in that department, he has no rival. We also enjoyed the incredible musical variations offered in tangos, vals, taranto and a updated siguiriya in which he showed that the roots are not at odds with contemporary music.
After the excitement, the penetrating, sensitive creative guitar of Antonio Rey, brave and self-assured in more than one hour of recital with no accompaniment whatsoever.. From the row just behind me could be overheard: “I really like Morao, but this guy is something else”. The artist, with profound command of the concert guitar and a brilliant playing style, laid out an intimate repertoire that went from taranta to bolero, passing through farruca (impressive!), bulerías and the song “Alma” dedicated to his daughter. With his decisive strums and the power of his fingers, he showed the infinity of sensations that can be communicated from his guitar, and that it’s a lie that it’s boring if the interpreter is a guitarist such as himself.
The only bad thing was the sound that during Morao’s first part had a lot of feedback, and with Rey, there was an uncomfortable background whistling sound. As for the rest, two fine guitarists. Although on this occasion, Antonio Rey surpassed Diego in professionalism, conviction and experience.