23rd FESTIVAL DE JEREZ
Ana Morales “Sin permiso (canciones para el silencio”)
Compañía Beatriz Morales “Hembra Alpha”
Friday, March 1st, 2019.
Dance: Ana Morales, José Manuel Álvarez. Voice: Juan José Amador. Guitar: Juan Antonio Suárez “Canito”. Drums and electronic music: Daniel Suárez. Coreography: Ana Morales, José Manuel Álvarez. Choreographic collaboration: David Coria.
This year at the Festival de Jerez, there are more works that could be described as experimental or avant-garde than those in a more conventional nature. In this line, Catalonian dancer Ana Morales, holder of the La Unión prize for dance and the Giraldillo for dance from the most recent Bienal de Sevilla, among many other honors, came to the Villamarta theater with her work “Sin Permiso (canciones para el silencio)”, a danced response to her innermost artistic issues.
A complex text included on the program speaks of memories of her father, her relationship with Andalusia and her way of relating to men. A flesh-colored full-body leotard suggests nudity and shows Ana’s determination to put all her cards on the table. There is a great deal of percussion without music, much footwork and little singing, a recipe followed by other current flamenco dancers.
A removable train of ruffles doubles as a shawl in this dream world of Morales. The presence of Juan José Amador who accompanies his own singing on guitar, gets us into the flamenco groove with liviana and serrana, and inserts the rumba “La Negra Tomasa” for a flashback to the past. Other elements surprise and challenge the spectator. Dancer José Manuel Álvarez expresses diverse facets of Ana’s message, although the content isn’t always clear.
When Ana dances siguiriyas to Amador’s singing, the mood becomes steeped in the flamenco we so dearly want to feel, the most savory ingredient of a soup of memories that defines the artistic persona of Ana Morales.
Dance: Beatriz Morales, Marta de Troya, Marta Blanco. Guest artist and author of the music: Agujeta Chico. Voice: Carmen Grilo, Felipa del Moreno, Rocío Parilla. Guitar: Fernando Carrasco, Nono Jero. Violin: Bernardo Parrilla. Percussion: Ané Carrasco. Rhythm: Manuel Cantarote, Juan Diego Valencia.
At least the title gets your attention. We women are the fashion these days, and flamenco, an art-form always accused of being macho-centric, has a place for this over-wrought topic and the role of women, not only in flamenco, but in life in general.
At the Sala Compañía a group of 11 artists interpreted the work “Hembra Alpha” of Jerez dancer Beatriz Morales. The color red is used to send a visual message. Six women in fire engine red with red flowers in their hair…or the long red train with white polkadots that Beatriz manages with the greatest of ease.
Much of the singing by the three female vocalists is choral. Agujeta Chico, guest artist, is reminiscent of Camarón, an odd contrast with the family line, and he accompanies his own singing on guitar, doing a fine job with malagueñas.
I can’t quite put my finger on it, but Beatriz is…different. Her taranto dance is conventional, but her personality is unapologetically aggressive, arms outstretched, with powerful feet and long blond hard that whips around with each turn of her head. A Farruco-inspired style, distilled and adapted for a woman.
Two Martas, Troya and Blanco, dance together dressed in burgundy-colored pantsuits, impeccably synchronized for one of the best moments of this show with a message.