DUTCH FLAMENCO BIENNIAL 2011. DIEGO DEL
It goes on and on and on...
Silvia Calado. Amsterdam, January 30th, 2011
'Orate'. Diego del Morao:
guitar, music. Jesús Méndez: cante. Bernardo
Parrilla: violin. Ignacio Cintado: bass. Luis Carrasco:
box drum. Perico Navarro: percussion. 3rd Dutch Flamenco
Biennial. Bimhuis. Amsterdam, January 30th, 2011. 8:30 p.m.
Well then, as we’d said in the previous
review, flamenco is endless. And scarcely three hours after
the closing gala which united flamenco and contemporary
classical music, there was still more to listen to at the
Bimhuis. The venue’s program had announced Moraíto
in concert but, following doctor’s orders, it was
impossible for him to travel to Amsterdam these days. And
since he had a replacement at home, he sent in his name
his son Diego
del Morao – who, moreover, is premiering his début
album 'Orate' -, sure that he “would come out with
flying colors”. He told the audience so himself over
the phone just before the concert began. “And what
are you going to start off with?”, he asked from Jerez.
And Diego began with a rondeña,
a style which allowed him to sketch with fantasy and, little
by little, to rely on his weapon: rhythm. Not only do his
Jerez roots and his inheritance from his father converge
in his way of playing, but also the great reference of his
de Lucía, who he has been second guitar for over
the last few seasons and, therefore, who he has learned
from, not through recordings, but first-hand. He focused
straight on Jerez in the medium tempo of the soleá.
And then in the seguiriya 'Pago de la serrana', whose severity
he softened with a nearly song-style circular motif acting
as an introduction and ending. Besides as a soloist, he
also wanted to measure up as an accompanist, a skill which
those bearing his surname pride themselves on. The cantaor
Méndez, another of flamenco’s young talents
who, like he himself, already left Jerez for the world some
time ago. And then the solo voice of this old boy acted
as a hinge in the middle of the concert, seeking old-time
sound in a fragment of the romance by Bernardo el Carpio,
which he finished off with a pregón de Macandé.
Back to the center of the stage, always
with the city lights and the coming and going of trains
as the backdrop, the guitarist used his unmistakable swing
to perform another of the bulerías on the album.
With bass and Parrilla’s unmistakable violin, in a
piece por tangos, studded with circles and virtuoso 'soleos',
he brought his discourse closer to another of the maestros:
Tomatito. Manners which, following a piece which was one
hundred percent Moraíto, he also applied por bulerías.
But he insisted that the star of the night was his father,
even though he was thousands of kilometers away. And he
took the emblematic score 'Rocayisa' from him. And as he
did with Moraíto in the past Bienal de Sevilla in
la uva y el cante', coming out to dance it for him was
Grilo, a spectacular bailaor who has already left the
flamencos from Flanders gaping several times over the past
few days. And his arrival gave an extra breath of fresh
air to Diego del Morao, who finished off with some blazing
bulerías, with a desire to live, add life and leave
energy in these lands so that the crew of the Dutch Flamenco
Biennial starts to work on the next edition. And, as we
know for a fact, it is already doing so.