Ronald Radford

 
The Great Art of Flamenco

"A Miracle of Natural Art"

A lone guitarist sits on the stage. Equipped with only six silent strings and his love and respect for an ancient folklore, he weaves a musical tapestry recognized the world over as Flamenco - the heartbeat of Spain.

Flamenco is the traditional folk art of Southern Spain, where singing, dancing and guitar playing are a way of life. It is a distillation of centuries of cultural influences in Spain, from the religious chants of the Moslems and Jews to the songs and dance rhythms of the Spanish Gypsies whose ancestral home was Northern India. The blending of Oriental and Western styles gives Flamenco music an incredible range of expression.

In the history of Flamenco, guitar solos are of comparatively recent origin. By the early 1900’s the Gypsies had fashioned unwritten guitar music, which according to the great Spanish composer Manuel De Falla, is “One of the miracles of natural art.”

In this concert art form, the guitarist develops variations on themes as well as spontaneous improvisations within the strict traditional patterns of the Flamenco songs and dances. The solo artist combines classical guitar techniques with intricate Flamenco rolls, finger percussion, and syncopated strumming.

These distinctive techniques serve to illuminate the authentic mood and emotions of each palo or song form. Mr. Radford follows the musical wisdom of the Spanish Gypsies who taught him, “One must have the music in his heart before he can play it on the strings.”

The great Mario Escudero said, “Flamenco is an unlimited art whose boundaries can be constantly extended if proper care is taken to preserve the purity of the styles and rhythms. Flamenco is not a mystery; it is an art. Like all arts, there are no mysteries which study and dedication will not reveal to those who love it.”

When performed by a master guitarist, this elegant and noble art has a compelling impact. It is accepted in concert halls around the world because, like all great art forms, Flamenco evokes those human emotions, from pathos to joy, shared by all mankind.

Versatile Programming: As you consider booking Ron, remember Flamenco Guitar can be successfully presented as a fine arts concert, a contemporary program, or an international folk music or ethnic event.