The talented Edwin Aparicio is the closest Washington has to a flamenco master and his yearly productions at GALA Theatre are the equivalent of a flamenco conservatory located and nurtured right here in Washington DC. He has once again created a 'flamenco musical' based on the story of his life. It is astonishing to witness the improvement and maturity of Aparicio's productions over the years and how his shows become more theatrical and less of a concert as he explores his artistic roots.
In this edition Edwin answers the question of why a young Salvadoran immigrant became a flamenco dancer in Washington DC. He begins with references to his childhood in Salvador and the humble indigenous conditions of his upbringing. He starts the night dressed in a vest with fringes that reminds one of the wild west. His migration to our area is indicated by a series of prop designs that celebrate baseball caps. He brings to life on stage the stages of his development from salsa to hip hop to ballet and then full-fledged flamenco giving credit to the influences of his time in Spain and on his experiences there. Whereas Aparicio is not a Spaniard or from a family steeped in flamenco history, he is in so many ways a true gypsy. He brings to life the renegade and rebel nature of the outsider, the deep passion and sensibility and the exotic face and body of someone right out of the gypsy tradition. Edwin is our gypsy, the mongrel mixture of the Americas, Africa and Spain that is our multi-cultural, metro-diverse expression. He represents what our community and region has become and his desire and passion for flamenco is a noble journey.
Surrounded by a troupe of accomplished dancers -one of who represents the young Aparicio- and the same musical accompaniment as in prior spectacles, headed by the piercing, elegiac voice of Amparo 'La Repompilla Heredia direct from Spain, Edwin Aparicio provides a first class performance that mixes a great many genres into one potpourri of extravagant, luxurious, rich delight. The only thing missing right now from his repertoire is more performances to exhibit these special gifts and delight a larger audience with his hypnotic, invigorating dance exhibitions.