Flamenco in the United States

From the Modernist Vanguard through Twenty-first Century

An international symposium

Presented in conjunction with the New York Flamenco Festival.

Zambra Tablao Rosa Durán at Worlds Fair 1965, courtesy of Brook Zern

Flamenco in the United States will gather scholars from a range of fields in an interdisciplinary conference highlighting the influence of the United States, through its institutions, scholars, performing artists, and audiences, on flamenco as a global form. Flamenco has been present on U.S. stages from the last decades of the nineteenth century, and this conference aims to explore how manifestations of flamenco in the U.S. have reflected back upon and contributed to the development of their original models. As nineteenth-century French dance critic Théophile Gautier wrote of his  1840 visit to Spain,

“Spanish dances only exist in Paris, just as seashells are found only in curiosity shops, never at the seashore. O, Fanny Elssler!…even before we came to Spain, we suspected that it was you who invented the cachucha!”[1]

Questions and topics to be considered may include:

  • What is the impact of U.S. performers and audiences on the development of flamenco?
  • How have U.S. scholars shaped flamencology in both the U.S. and in Spain?
  • Mapping the presence of flamenco in U.S. institutions such as universities, high schools, private studios, community centers, research centers, libraries, museums, etc.
  • Bibliographies, filmographies, and discographies of flamenco in the U.S.
  • From Sol Hurok to Claudio Segovia and Héctor Orezzoli to Miguel Marín, how have producers and impresarios shaped flamenco in the U.S.?
  • From player pianos to digital technology: how U.S. recording techniques have impacted flamenco.
  • Specific topics such as flamenco and jazz, flamenco and the folk music scene of the 1950s and 60s, U.S.-based flamenco dance companies, Spanish dance in the early modern dance pioneers of the early-twentieth century, Spanish dance in blackface minstrelsy etc.

[1] Parakilas, “How Spain Got a Soul,” 148, cites Théophile Gautier, Patrick Berthier, ed., Voyage en Espagne, suivi de España (Paris: Gallimard, 1981), 45; translated in Théophile Gautier, and Henry Christie Steel, Voyage en Espagne (Boston: D.C. Heath & Co., 1900), 32.

Both sessions are open to the general public and attendance is free.
For registration and questions, please contact:

Submissions are no longer being accepted.

Enrique Morente, Paco Cortés, Pepe and Antonio Montoya Carbonell, ca. 1987, photo by François Bernardi

March 27, 2020 – The Graduate Center

9 am – 5 pm
Skylight Room, The Graduate Center
355 Fifth Avenue
New York, New York, 10016


Ninotchka Bennahum, “Flamenco Modernism: War, Exile, and Feminist Embodiment”

Lynn Brooks, “Spanish Dance on Early American Stages”

Michelle Clayton, “Backdrops of Red, Grey, Black and White: Antonia Mercé and Vicente Escudero in the US”

Sybil Cooksey, “Ralph Ellison and Flamenco”

K. Meira Goldberg, “A 3 a.m. Racket on Greenwich Village Cellar Doors: Aaron Rennert’s 1958 Portrait of the New York Flamenco Scene”

Michelle Heffner Hayes, “Burla y Bulla: Humor and Critique in Flamenco”

Sandie Holguín, “Flamenco at the 1964 – 1965 New York World’s Fair and its Resonance for Spain and the United States”

Peter Manuel in conversation with Alex Conde and Alfonso Mogaburo Cid: “Flamenco Jazz in the USA”

Miguel Marín, Founder and Director of Flamenco Festival, and Rocío Márquez, cantaora, in conversation with Daniel Valtueña: “Breaking Walls, Building Bridges.”

Kiko Mora, “Modernism, Flamenco and The Photo-Secession Movement: Faíco on Broadway, 1908-1909”

David Roldán Eugenio, “El Negro Alguilino and Flamenco Jazz”

Aurora Arriaza and Calderón at Maxim’s, calling card, Aurora Arriaza Scrapbook. Jerome Robbins Dance Division, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts