I always love when I spot a connection between a country's past and present; a way in which its history has made it the country it is to day. On Sunday I was at the final event of the Dublin Dance Festival, the flamenco of Soledad Barrio and Noche Flamenca, and one of the most striking parts of the performance was the similarity of the singing (cante) and the wailing call to prayer of a muezzin. I suspect this is something many, many people are struck by: the resemblence is uncanny, and unsurprising given that flamenco comes from Andalusia, a region that spent centuries under Muslim rule.
The performance was enjoyable, although I suspect that like many forms of dance and music it is at least partly an acquired taste - knowledge would probably only improve the enjoyment. I like the way each element (hand-clapping, singing, dance and guitar) works well independently but also as part of the overall effect.
My only regret is that it wasn't one of those dinner shows... I'd sure have liked some culturally authentic food and wine to go with the flamenco. (I can't wait to go back to Spain!)