Flamenco is a style of music and dance that originated from Andalucía at the end of the 18th century, and has a base in Andalusian Folklore that existed at that time, as a result from the coexistence of multiple races and cultures in Andalucía.
Flamenco was born among the marginalized and disadvantaged classes of Andalusian society. A controversy exists about its origin and none of the possible theories are able to verify this historical form. The most widespread theory is that the cultural mixing of natives, Muslims, Gypsies, Castilian immigrants, Jews, etc. created the origin of this genre in Andalucía.
Flamenco is much more than a musical style. It has it’s own language, traditions, and social norms. It’s an art of life, a form of life, and a form to perceive and interpret daily existence. The three fundamental elements of flamenco music are El Cante (song), El Baile (dance) and La Guitarra (guitar). Flamenco offers a large variety of styles, called flamenco palos. Originally, flamenco was only in the private sectors of life, in the intimacy of families, houses, etc… In this way, the first palos were those that expressed the pain and sorrow of a marginalized people. But little by little they appeared with the professionalization of flamenco and with its appearances in public settings, other types of palos formed, festive, joyful and cheerful…Each palo has its own name, its own character and unique musical characteristics that are called claves or modos, a determined harmonic progression and rhythmwith their own names/called, “compás.”
Flamenco is an original art, rich and appreciated by the whole world. Currently, it is considered as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity and an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Andalusian Ethnology.