By Donna Miller | Contributor
Flamenco Fever presents its annual Paella y Pasion Spanish Cookout and Local Artist Showcase: Sunday May 21st features live dance and music performances and delicious paella prepared by local chefs before your eyes. Originally the opening event of the annual Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival held in October, Paella y Pasion, was moved to spring as a stand-alone event to serve the South Dallas community, creating momentum for the fall festival. This year is special as Flamenco Fever is celebrating their historic invitation to perform in Spain this Summer!
Paella y Pasion is the finale of the 8th annual ‘Flamenco de Mayo’ series that provides low-cost performances for festivals, restaurants, and schools that want to celebrate Hispanic culture near the Cinco de Mayo Holiday. The show features singer/guitarist Tito Fernandez from Madrid, and almost a variety of Latin music and dance acts. A half a dozen chefs will serve up on the hour after completing their on-site cooking demonstration. Onlookers enjoy the music and observe as each of the huge dishes are prepared. Chefs will compete for prizes like Best of DFW, Most Creative Recipe, and more. Celebrity judges will make the call for the first time this year.
“This family-friendly, outdoor event provides local flamenco dancers, singers, and guitarists a relaxed atmosphere to perform and learn from more experienced artists that come in for the event” said Julia Alcántara, founder of Nonprofit Flamenco Fever that produces the event. “Our passion is building a sustainable flamenco community in Dallas by creating a welcoming atmosphere for flamenco curious citizens to get involved and local musicians to collaborate.”
Paella y Pasion is a free community event offering a culinary adventure and cultural experience. A public stage is created at TYPO Park for local performers of flamenco, Flamenco Fever students, and other styles of dance. This family event will allow nonprofit Flamenco Fever to reach its goal of making cultural events available to the underserved community of Oak Cliff and to support Dallas-based Flamenco training and performances for all local studios. It also provides an opportunity to build excitement and raise money for The Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival held in October.
Paella is a classic Spanish rice dish made with rice, saffron, vegetables, chicken, and seafood cooked and served in one pan. Tickets for 1 bowl of paella and 1 drink will be available for $20 and come paired with a Spanish inspired souvenir: a fan, silk flower and polka dot scarf, to help create a festive mood for attendees. Sangria, beer, water and soft drinks will also be sold. Audience members are encouraged to don festive attire and bring lawn chairs.
Paella y Pasion Details
Sunday, May 21, 2 – 7 p.m.
TYPO Park, northeast corner of Tyler and Polk behind The Cliff House
Paella / drink purchase: $20 on site
Sponsorships are available: flamencofever.org/purchase
About the Organizer Julia Alcántara
The Chance of a Lifetime: Director Julia Alcantara has worked for more than 30 years cultivating the cultural landscape of Texas and has given selflessly to the city of Dallas. Her efforts as an artist & business woman have earned her a momentous opportunity to cross the Atlantic and present her first international production in the birthplace of flamenco this summer. The Seminario de Flamenca Malaga, is an international flamenco festival presenting some of Spain’s greatest artists. More than 20 students and professional artists will make the trip to participate in this historic event. The show “Memorias Flamencas” debuted in Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival in 2022 as The Grand Finale at the Majestic Theater. The Father of Flamenco Jazz, Flute/Sax player Jorge Pardo is the star of the show. Boasting prestigious awards, including the “Greatest Jazz Musician” by the French Academy of Jazz & the “National Prize for Current Music” from the Ministry and Culture in Spain and his first Latin Grammy for his work on Chick Corea’s Album Antidote. It is the first dance show ever choreographed to his music in his over 40-year career.
About: Tito Fernandez from Madrid, Spain
Singer, guitarist and composer, Vicente “Tito” Fernandez began his professional career at 13 years of age. He has given more than 1000 concerts and performances sharing the stage with artists such as El Pele, Jerónimo Maya and Aurora Vargas. A versatile musician that combines the purity of flamenco with jazz harmonies, creating a show full of emotion. Years of experience on stages around the world guarantee the purity of its components. Thanks to the mastery of not only traditional cante jondo, but also festive rumbas and jazz are joined with flamenco to create new harmonies and sounds. He has composed more than 150 original songs, both music and lyrics, from pop to traditional flamenco themes and is making his first trip to the US for this Spring Flamenco Residency.
About the Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival
The Oak Cliff Flamenco Festival is a ten-day Spanish cultural event with workshops, dancing, music, cinema, a paella cookout, fashion show and art exhibit. Outdoor events are free, making them affordable for those who may have never experienced flamenco before. The festive environment unites Oak Cliff’s Latino heritage with the “newcomers”, retaining its cultural identity. The festival employs more than a dozen local musicians, providing opportunities for Dallas based dance studios and guitarists to collaborate.
Community funding is crucial.
To become a sponsor, go to flamencofever.org/purchase