Like being whisked away to a balmy night in Seville, Gypsy Caravan features the dancers and instrumentalists of Studio Flamenco in an immersive celebration of culture.
The dancers were backed by incredible live musicians on flamenco guitar, violin, flute, and percussion. The intricate fingerpicking of the guitar kicked the show off and had the audience entranced before flourishes of colour appeared with beautifully patterned dresses as the tempo of the music quickened.
The dancers billowed sheets, twirled their hands rhythmically while their feet tapped and stomped dramatically. Periodically the dancers called out to each other “ole!”, exclamations of which the audience was soon enthusiastically mimicking throughout the 2-hour experience.
With many of the dancers given a chance to perform a solo, it was fascinating to see a lot of individuality amongst the performers. Standouts included Daniel Lyas, the company’s only male flamenco dancer, whose footwork and style was effortless yet precise. Acclamations must also be made to vocalist Zoe Velez, who at could emote sorrow and longing in some songs and exaltation and liveliness in others, allowing the dancers to move to the sound and feeling of her voice.
Despite Saturday’s performance being moved indoors due to inclement weather, this didn’t stop Gypsy Caravan from being any less vivacious as the audience were encouraged to bring picnic rugs, dress in gypsy theme, and interact with the performers on handclaps and vocals.
No matter how familiar you are with the artform of flamenco before experiencing Gypsy Caravan, it’s guaranteed you’ll leave with an appreciation for its Spanish flair.
***** Five stars.