Fado and Flamenco: 2 expressions, 1 soul
Trip Start May 13, 2012
6Trip End Jul 28, 2012
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
We first established ourselves in the music hall where fado would take place with food and conversation. As soon as the lights dimmed, the singer came out and her presence immediately commanded our attention. Conversation stopped and all eyes were connected through a mutual fixation. The singer then began to entice with her voice, a voice capable of luring into the soul to place where external and internal worlds acquaint each other and proceed to intertwine
The first night we were in Madrid we went to a flamenco show. There was a similar format with the fado show in the sense that we had a dinner and a show; but instead of the phases of fado, we had the flamenco show all at once. The ambiance included dim lighting and before we even had time to expect something, the dancers and singers commanded the stage. The performance was highly charged. This energy entranced the audience and maintained this fixation throughout the show's duration. From each rapid body movement to the knocking of the dancers feet on the stage to the emotional cries of the singers, I felt completely moved. The whole experience was holistically touching, just as touching as fado; however, each experience captivated the audience in different ways.
The difference between the effects of fado and flamenco is this: the soul absorbs fado, and flamenco absorbs the soul. While watching the fado show, the emotion exuded by each performer snuck in within you, developing a sort of underlying empathy. While watching the flamenco show, the energy of the show unleashed the soul within the audience and playfully interacted with it. Both were quite memorable experiences, and interestingly enough, both represented the souls of each nation. Portugal has experienced both historical periods of triumph and turmoil. Ultimately the Portuguese have experienced an emotional tug of war through these contrasting periods, which is represented thoroughly in the soulful nature of fado. Spain is a brazen, passionate nation, which an easily noticeable energy. When adversity strikes, the Spanish fight to progress and celebrate when they do. Each nation gives off a different energy that these dances happen to manifest. Each dance is uniquely soulful, and I feel properly acquainted with the histories and cultures of both Portugal and Spain through these forms of music.