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Flamenco with Jordanian flavour

By Khetam Malkawi - Mar 19,2014 - Last updated at Mar 19,2014

AMMAN — A flamenco guitar concert in tribute to Spanish flamenco composer and guitarist Paco de Lucia delighted the audience who came to enjoy the traditional Spanish music with a Jordanian flavour on Tuesday night.

Performed by young Jordanian musicians, the concert was organised by Instituto Cervantes and the Spanish embassy in Amman.

Although they belong to three different bands, the musicians teamed up two weeks ago along with a Spanish singer who is studying Arabic at the University of Jordan to present the best of De Lucia at the 90-minute concert.

Guitarists Essam Abu Kou, Obai Al Bitar and Anas Qahoush, in addition to percussionist Khries Bashar, played some of the most famous compositions of De Lucia, who passed away last month, and had to come back for an encore after the audience insisted.

“We knew each other before, but we only teamed up two weeks ago to perform this concert,” Abu Kou told The Jordan Times, adding that after this concert, he and other musicians might consider holding more flamenco concerts.

De Lucia is viewed as one of the most important interpreters of orthodox flamenco and is also famed for fusing it with other musical styles, including Arabic music, jazz, blues and Indian music.

In his lifetime, De Lucia received the National Award for Flamenco Guitar, the Gold Medal for Merit in Fine Arts, Distinction of Honour Music Awards and Prince of Asturias Award for the Arts. 

The jury for the Prince of Asturias Award for the Arts in 2004, highlighted his “interpretive honesty” and its ability to transcend “borders and styles” that made him “a musician of universal dimension”. 

The tribute on Tuesday also featured the screening of a documentary about the composer titled “Essentials: Paco de Lucía”.

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