Flamenco in Granada

20 agosto, 2018

The flamenco is one of the most representative activities of Granada, since its gypsy quarter Sacromonte, located in the eastern zone of the city, is characterized by being one of the main cradles of the flamenco. The popular zambra, also known as zambra mora, is a flamenco singing and dance that was born in the 16th century in Granada. At first, it was danced in the gypsy wedding ceremonies, but now the aim is to attract the visitors to the caves and hills of the Sacromonte.

In 1922, the first competition of flamenco singing was held in Granada, that is why the importance of this city regarding the flamenco, also known as “cante jondo” or “cante grande”. This competition was sponsored by the dramatist of Granada Federico García Lorca and by the composer Manuel de Falla, in order to avoid the disappearance of the essence of this art. For this reason, the competitors had to be completely unknown.

If you want to enjoy a good spectacle of flamenco and its art, there are two areas that must be visited: the Sacromonte and the Albaicín. Firstly, the Sacromonte is characterized by its large and white caves, which are dedicated to this art and decorated with copper objects. These caves are known as zambras (the same as the traditional dance represented in them), and the public will be able to admire a true manifestation of art full of passion and emotion. These caves of Sacromonte were declared as UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage.

One of the most important zambras is La Cueva de la Rocío, belonging to “The Family Maya”, a popular gypsy family. As well as enjoying the impressive spectacles worthy of admiration, the public can go to a terrace with beautiful views to the Alhambra and the Generalife. This zambra has received people as well known as Bill Clinton or Michelle Obama.

One of the largest caves of Granada is the Templo del Flamenco, where spectacles with a large staff are presented every night. These are directed by Antonio Vallejo Anaya, who makes people feel astonished, because this demonstration of art cannot be explained with words, but it must be seen for yourself.

The Cueva de los Tarantos is also very popular in Granada due to its sensational spectacle of flamenco. This cave offers a large service including transport and guided Albaicín tour to the tourist, who can also enjoy a dinner with the traditional dishes of the region before the spectacle.  

Other fascinating cave is the Cueva María La Canastera, with a museum of the flamenco singer that gives its name and where you can take dance classes. There is a lively and familiar environment.

Visiting the Venta El Gallo, you can have dinner in its restaurant or just enjoy the spectacle. It is located in an exceptional place, in front of the Alhambra. Besides, it includes a touristic tour in the Albaicín and the Sacromonte.

Very close to these caves, the Auditorio Municipal de la Chumbera is located, an art reference that offers a lot of cultural activities to spectators, such as a programme called Patrimonio Flamenco. This programme has many spectacles of flamenco throughout the year, in addition to concerts of other styles of music, all accompanied by an impressive view to the Alhambra that cannot be forgotten. 

Besides, in the Albaicín there are a lot of flamenco clubs (peñas flamencas in Spanish) where spectacles of flamenco are represented. The most important one is the Peña Flamenca La Platería, which is the oldest club, because it was founded in 1949. The different spectacles are performed on Thursday and on several Saturdays (reservation recommended). These spectacles will delight their audience. 

In the Sala Albaicín, located close to the Mirador de San Cristóbal, the spectator can mix a touristic walk around the Albaicín and the Sacromonte with the delight of the spectacle. You can also take flamenco dance lessons in groups with a minimum of 10 people and the tickets include the transport from any point of the city.

The Peña La Parra Flamenca is also important, because its spectacles connect with the public and transmit the same emotions that the artists feel.

In this historic quarter, there are also many restaurants with spectacles of flamenco every night. This is the case of Los Jardines de Zoraya, where there are many tickets: you can contemplate the spectacle with a tapa and a drink or with a menu. This restaurant gets good reviews because it has a wide gastronomic variety of Granada and Spain. Depending on the time of the year, the spectacles are performed in different places: inside the restaurant in winter, with a rustic environment, or in a large garden in summer. Definitely, it is a fantastic combination of culinary and flamenco arts.

For this reason, those who really want to enjoy a good spectacle of flamenco, its art and its passion, must visit these areas of Granada. They never forget this night full of passion and colour.  It is ideal for immersing yourself in a different world, full of emotions, feelings, passion and, above all, artistic quality.