Stunning flamenco genius brings crowd to its feet at SWMF’s opening night

  • Sunday 14, January 2018 in 12:56 PM
  • During the first night of SWMF 2018
  • During the first night of SWMF 2018
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Sharjah 24: A spectacular Andalusian performance by one the world’s most talented contemporary flamenco artists on Saturday showed why the Sharjah World Music Festival (SWMF) is becoming a lynchpin in the emirate’s – and the UAE’s – international cultural calendar.
On the opening night of the fifth edition of SWMF, presented by Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), in a strategic partnership with Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA) and Al Majaz Amphitheatre, and organised by Furat Qaddouri Music Centre, Vicente Amigo and his outstanding support musicians prompted several standing ovations by the crowd during the first concert at The Flag Island Amphitheatre.

Complete with a breath-taking performance of supreme flamenco dancer Primivito Daza, multi-award winning Amigo performed many of his own compositions with a pace and a passion that had the audience of all ages transfixed.

Widely acknowledged across the world as one of the genre’s most gifted and respected guitar virtuosos, Amigo took an apprenticeship with flamenco maestro Manolo Sanlúcar at the age of just 15. By the time he was 20, he appeared in Sanlúcar’s masterpiece Tauromagia, considered one of the most important flamenco albums of all time.

Having finished his official set, Amigo returned to the stage after a five-minute chant of ‘encore’ from the audience, many of whom queued to have their own guitars signed by the master himself after the concert.

It has been an explosive beginning to SWMF 2018 from a sensational performer whose reputation is global and calibre is world class, with much more to come over the next six days.

Sunday’s performance at The Flag Island venue is guaranteed to be another of the festival’s most popular highlights, featuring The Cairo Opera House Orchestra presenting the Al Andalib Al Asmar night for the memory of Abdel Halim Hafez, one of the most popular Egyptian and Arabic singers of all time.

The evening’s free-of-charge performances will see the stunning Argentine act Mujeres En Tango (Women Dance Tango) at Al Majaz Waterfront and Arabic rock guitar star Saif Shaheen taking centre stage at Al Qasba.

SWMF 2018 features a total of 14 concerts, five of which are ticketed and being held at Al Majaz Amphitheatre and The Flag Island Amphitheatre. The remaining nine will take place outdoors at Al Qasba and Al Majaz Waterfront, and will offer free admission. The free outdoor concerts will take place from 8:30-9:30 pm throughout the event taking place which runs until January 19.

SWMF 2018 features a stellar line-up of artists and musicians from 11 Arab and foreign countries, including Kuwait, Spain, Hungary, Spain, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Iraq and many more.

By organising this first of its kind festival, Furat Qaddouri Music Centre seeks to boost the cultural and art presence of Sharjah and the UAE on the global arena, introduce the world’s various musical cultures to the UAE community and add a new gem to the emirate’s rich portfolio of tourist, art and culture attractions.