Los Tarantos Flamenco Show
Tucked away amongst the popular restaurants and bars on Plaça Reial sits Los Tarantos, a cosy and colourful tablao which has treated locals and foreigners alike to its charismatic flamenco shows since 1963.
The dimly-lit interior gives the venue a vibrant feeling as the spotted red walls provide an imposing ambience for the action on-stage. The forum can hold around 150 spectators for each showing, however seats are on a first-come, first-serve basis so arrive early or purchase your tickets online to save queueing. There is also a bar so that customers can purchase a drink to enjoy for the performance.
The show itself runs for 30 minutes so for those expecting the full flamenco experience, this probably isn't the best choice for you. However, Los Tarantos serves as an excellent taster for the popular Spanish dance which has been an integral part of Spanish culture since the early 19th century and culminated in the graceful finesse of Carmen Amaya in the Forties.
There are three performances every evening (six in the summer) and a different cuadro is programmed for each night of the week. Each cuadro offers a comprehensive display of the genre with a beautiful mix of toque, cante and baile. The percussion provides an eloquent backdrop to the strong vocal chords of the Spanish lyrics and the elegant rhythm of the flamenco dancers. It certainly provides a captivating insight into the tradition of this popular dance; the energy of the dancers and the passion of the musical quartet underlining its cultural significance. The traditional costumes of the dancers added to the authenticity of the event, however, the casual dress of the musicians did undermine this effectiveness.
With tickets priced at only €8 on the door, it is a cost-effective way to obtain an intriguing snapshot of Spanish culture. Tickets can be purchased here.