The arrival of Juan Manuel Fernández Montoya “Farruquito”
and his entourage made ripples in the small town
of Mont-de-Marsan where the fifteenth Festival
de Arte Flamenco was being held. The woman who
cleaned my room at the hotel knew that “une personne
tres important d'Espagne” was soon to arrive,
and the taxi-driver who took me to the Espace
François Mitterand where I had been told to appear
asked if I was going to see the “danseur”.
more I learn, the more I realize the
truth in the things Farruco used to say to me.”
Farruquito was visibly tense. He had not been
satisfied with the technical rehearsal and sent
a message via his manager postponing the interview
an hour and a half. I took advantage of the wait
to observe how the self-assured 20-year-old gave
orders to the lighting and sound technicians,
consulting now and again with his special guest
artist, veteran Manuel Molina.
At half past five in the afternoon, with less
than four hours until the world premiere of “Alma
vieja”, the young dancer approaches me and indicates
he has a few minutes before leaving for the hotel.
He claims to have read the review in Deflamenco
of his performance in Seville last January so
Do you have Internet? Do
you surf the web?
Yes, a little…I don't have much time,
but yes, I like it.
How was the US tour?
Work-wise fine, and we had great audiences.
The country….no comment.
In what sense?
They were going through a very difficult time,
too much tension…everyone's nerves were on
edge and in the theater we had some…I don't
know, with the technicians….as far as everything
Will the artistic collaboration
with Juana Amaya be repeated?
I don't really know, but Juana is wonderful
to work with.
At the official presentation
of the festival they spoke about Farruquito's
new “creation”. Do you consider what
we're going to see tonight a “creation”?
Not really, it's a flamenco show.
What does it mean to
you to have been voted one of the world's most
It means…well, I don't know….just
fluff…things that happen in life and nothing
Aside from your own family,
do you think traditional flamenco dance will survive?
I certainly hope so. I hope and pray that
In one interview you
say that you don't care for anyone dancing nowadays.
Is that still true?
No, it's not quite like that. Sometimes the
answers I give are misinterpreted, know what I
mean? It's not that I don't like any dancer, on
the contrary. I actually admire all dancers, each
and every one. The one thing that is true however,
if there's one particular person I look up to,
and this is the honest-to-God truth, the only
person I learn from is Farruco, and I'm still
learning from him, through his advice, his videos.
The more I learn, the more I realize the truth
in the things he used to say to me. Aside from
that, I admire all dancers, because each one has
Do you think of your
grandfather when you're dancing?
Do you think he would
be proud of you now?
I think he would.
What would you tell those
people who say that traditional flamenco is no
longer relevant, that it has to be renovated?
I wouldn't tell them anything at all…it's
their loss. I respect every individual's opinion.
But being so young, haven't you ever felt tempted
to explore those paths?
I think that if you believe in yourself, that's
Do you believe in yourself?
With the help of Farruco, one hundred percent.