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Eva Yerbabuena triumphs in Madrid with her flamenco collage

The dancer presented a show made up of pieces and fragments of other work, and had the audience eating out of her hand thanks to her experience, and a high level of dancing.
June 12, 2017
Text: Silvia Cruz Lapeña
Photos: David Mudarra

 

“Showing her vulnerability” said the program of Eva Yerbabuena’s “Carne y Hueso”, a show she brought to the Suma Flamenca 2017.  But in fact, there wasn’t a hint of doubt or fragility in the work.

Yerbabuena chose pieces from other shows of hers such as “Alas Negras” and “Apariencias”, and put them on the table with a different color.  That’s something an artist with a personality of her own can do, and Eva has it, which is why, when she dances siguiriyas, which we’ve seen many times, it seems fresh: not because she’s wearing a different dress, but because she is able to change the energy.

Three dances were all the Granada dancer needed to get people jumping out of their seats, because the rest of the show was performed by the company of five very professional interpreters: Cristian Lozano, Mariano Bernal, Fernando Jiménez and Ángel Fariña.  The group had a hard time warming up, but they managed to do so, largely thanks to the presence of Jiménez.  Each time the Seville dancer came on stage, the coordination of the group improved, as if he were an anchor.  He also did a solo number in which, dressed as Charles Chaplin, he acted as a mime with a clown nose to dance Bambino’s “Payaso” in a sparkling interpretation that will go down as the most original number of this year’s Suma.

The show’s pace slowed down too much in choral moments that paved the way for the dances of Yerbabuena, who did not dance with the group at any point.  It might have been a good idea to bring “Apariencias”, her most recent show, in order to show off her newest work and give the Madrid festival that contemporary quality Eva understands so well as applied to flamenco, and which in this edition, under the direction of Aída Gómez, is missing.

Even so, “Carne y Hueso” comes off as a good bet by Eva, thanks to the intelligence with which she recycled material and chose the best for her purposes and style: Juan José Amador, Enrique El Extremeño and Alfredo Tejada sang and made her feel at ease, and guitarist Paco Jarana was attentive at every moment. The same could be said of Antonio Coronel, whose percussion played an important role since several numbers were performed without vocals, only percussion and the occasional sound of a guitar.

Tejada sang dispensing voice and depth, and was especially good in fandangos, but it was el Extremeño who knew how to get Eva Yerbabuena boiling.  This was especially clear in the final alegrías in which she wore pink trousers and short jacket, and filled the enormous stage of the Sala Roja of the Teatros del Canal with no problem.  The design of the trousers made it hard to see the impressive leg-work and hips of the dancer, but even so, it was very clear that every moment of the cantiñas was carefully thought out.

Eva was radiant and self-confident and the audience shouted out “grande”, “brava” and “you’re the best” with believable intensity.  You wouldn’t have thought that with a collage show of this sort there would be room for suprises, but Eva managed to hold the audience’s attention and be convincing.

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca

Eva Yerbabuena - Suma Flamenca