Niño de Elche is a cantaor, a singer of flamenco, but not as we know it. He is a multi-disciplinary artist and contemporary deconstructionist who combines flamenco singing and toque (guitar) with performance art, poetry, improvisation, minimalism, singer-songwriting, rock and electronics.
His latest piece is informed by a wide breadth of Spanish musical styles and poetry such as classical zarzuela pieces, versions of Federico Garcia Lorca’s songs (such as the well-known “¡Ay, Carmela!”), the fandangos of Helios Gómez, the caracoles of Valcárcel Medina and will include flamenco guitar, piano, synthesizers and electronica.
This is wild. The Spanish Flamenco community is extremely conservative and fights over tradition more than Republicans and Democrats do in the U.S. Spanish Flamenco is no place for revolutionaries, so De Elche has “mucho valor” (lots of courage).
Some of the music is challenging at first. De Elche is sort of a Flamenco Brian Eno in his use of electronics, willingness to stretch and rock the genre, and collaborations with all kinds of artists.
But as far out as De Elche goes, there is still that Romany Flamenco root that comes from northern India, and will be familiar to anyone who loves Spanish Flamenco or has lived in South Asia.
Niño de Elche Albums and Shows
Mis primeros llantos (2007)
Sí, a Miguel Hernández (2013)
Las malditas órdenes del coronel (2013)
Voces del Extremo
Antología del cante heterodoxo flamenco (2018)
Niño de Elche in New York City
Niño de Elche brings his Anthology of Heterodox Flamenco Singing (Antología del Cante Flamenco Heterodoxo) tour to Schimmel Center in Manhattan’s Financial District on Wednesday, March 14, 2018 at 7:30 pm. From $29
The cover photo is funny in a way. De Elche looks very proud and formal in his suit with his chin held high. We are proud to be Spaniards, but Niño de Elche is anything but formal.
The show is curated by Isabel Soffer / Live Sounds. It is part of the Flamenco Festival.
Niño de Elche Tickets
Schimmel Center Box Office
3 Spruce St, New York, NY 10038
(between Park Row & Gold St)
Tuesday – Saturday: 12 noon – 5 pm
3 hours before performance time
Get tickets at SchimmelCenter.org