Flamenco is synonymous with Spanish culture but ignores the African culture at its heart
The fundamental contribution of Afro Andalusians has been systematically sidelined ever since they arrived in Spain. Commercial exploitation of the American colonies brought hundreds of Africans to Seville to be sold as slaves, forming a population who over time managed to gain space in a society wrought with racial prejudices. Music and dance were a fundamental part of their expression and the most important affirmation of their identity.
The connection between the marginalized African population to flamenco is clear but has to fight against a systemic denial of Spanish history. In Gurumbé, their story is finally told in a documentary filled with hard truths and brilliant performances. This includes spellbinding performances from UK born Black Flamenco dancer Yinka Esi Graves.
This film is shown as part of the Blackness in Europe series, a season highlighting the presence of Blackness across the Europe continent.