Dos Lunares investigates and promotes the intersections between Flamenco and Romani/Gypsy culture through printed matter, film nights, and special events.

November 17, 2010

Arabella, Dance Queen of the Mahala

Filed under: clips,General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 1:17 am

Arabella, denim-clad dance sensation of the mahala is mocked by her family and neighbors for her modern “disco” Romani style of dance. While her father entertains with hoots and jeers, the mahala laughs but also watches. Perhaps in a few years, the children circling her now will dance as she does, learning, much the way she did: village gatherings, impromptu parties, adults twirling, swaying and shimmying around them. Little gestures caught by the eyes and heart. Arabella is the descendant of master interpreters; her legacy, to create new languages of movement. A lineage stretching from Rajasthan to Romania made up of bits and pieces of everywhere.

Traditional Romanes mixes with the bumps, grinds and pops of the video vixens Arabella watches on satellite TV. The result is a fusion of old and new, rooted, looking back and moving forward and infused with the swing of her ancestors. Called forth by two polyrhythmic violins and a syncopated bass doubling as a drum, Arabella’s hips offer tiny kisses to the wind. Around her, the Rajasthani/Romanian sands rise and warm her body, preparing it for the long night of revelry.

Beyonce and Shakira have nothing on her.

• • •

April 2, 2010

International Roma Day 2010

Filed under: event,General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 12:14 pm


If you are in the Bay Area, you might consider checking out this event.

Main Event at Croatian American Cultural Center, 60 Onondaga St (map) , 7:30 – 11:30 pm – Dance workshop, followed by live music and dancing. $15 or $20 with after-party ticket. Features Rumen Sali Shopov with Brass Liberation Orchestra, and Orkestar Sali with special guests Chris Bajmakovich and Cele Paskoski. Have dinner at the event – super Balkan food by Christo Kolev available for purchase.

After the main event, the musicians and crowd will migrate to the
After-party at Bollyhood Caf̩, 3372 19th St. at Mission (map), 9:00 Р2:00 am РDJ dancing, then live music at midnight with the featured artists. $10 party or $20 combo ticket for both events.

From the Voice of Roma website:

About International Roma Day
International Roma Day (April 8) was officially declared in 1990 in Poland, during the fourth World Romani Congress in honor of the first major international meeting of Roma representatives, 7-12 of April, 1971 in London, UK. Since then Roma around the globe celebrate our social origins, language, culture, unity, and in particular, romipen (preservation of Rom identity) near the date of the original gathering.

VOR held San Francisco’s first annual International Roma Day event in 2000. In addition to romipen, our goals are to introduce audiences to and provide performing opportunities for renowned Romani performing artists, create a gathering place for Romani and other immigrant and refugee communities, and raise awareness about the human rights issues faced by Roma in today’s world. In particular, we focus on education regarding the dire circumstances of the Roma in and from Kosovo.

Romani traditional culture around the world and specifically in the U.S. is weakening. Old neighborhood communities, so nourishing to the culture, are disintegrating. Many young Roma don’t do traditional dances, and some young Roma don’t even share a language with previous generations of their families. This erosion of cultural identity and collective memory could easily result in the loss of Roma artistic expression and traditions that are infused with hundreds of years of history. VOR’s International Roma Day celebration events respond directly to this need. The artists and Roma participants reconnect through their participation, strengthening ties to their culture and preserving the artistic expression of our people.

Saban Bajramovic – Djelem Djelem

Happy International Roma Day! Djelem Djelem is considered the unofficial anthem of Roma/Gypsy people worldwide.

• • •

August 30, 2009

Favorite Video of the Week: Romano Horo

Filed under: clips,General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 4:51 pm

Esma Redžepova-Romano horo

Charming song by Esma, Queen of the Gypsies. I love the 60s tropical flourishes, the background vocals, the bongos and of course, Esma’s gorgeous voice.

• • •

July 29, 2009

International Remembrance Day of Roma Victims of the Pharraimos

Filed under: General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 10:43 am

Message from Rom News Network

Dear Roma community and RomNews readers,

We feel obliged to inform you about the on-going development on the International Remembrance Day of Roma Victims of the Pharraimos (Holocaust), on August the 2nd 2009 and the campaign “RememberThem”.

Many countries – from the United States to Russia and from Norway to Italy – already posted their participation, and currently, more than 18 events in Europe have already been announced. But we want to inform you in detail before August the 2nd so that you can join an event near your area, or be invited to organize your own event and include it on Translations, Event Calendar, Photos, Videos, Grafics and Links.

Please register at this site ! If you’re already member of a another group on, the easiest way is to register directly on and then search in “search social networks” for: International Remembrance Day of Roma Victims of the Pharraimos (Holocaust)

Please find background texts in different languages here:










Press Releases:

Use the Grafics: (animated gif); (Remember Them)


Video Message on the International Remembrance Day of Roma Victims of the Pharraimos (Holocaust) from Rudko Kawczynski President of the European Roma and Travellers Forum (Romanes spoken with English subtitles ):

[ Hi-Resolution for Broadcasting - Use it for free ! (85 MB - mpeg)]
 [ Good resolution (7,17 MB - mp4)]

[ Mobile Video Format (1 MB - 3gp) ] 
[ Email Version - small resolution (800 KB - wmv) ]
[ Email Version - high resolution (1,8 MB - wmv) ]

Audio Download:                                                    
[For Radios, MP3Players and iPods: Message as Audio (MP3 - 1,8 MB - 128 kbps - 44100Hz Stereo)]


International Remembrance Day of Roma Victims of the Pharraimos (Holocaust) Cause:

I want to stop Roma persecution Cause:

Remember Them camapign website:

RomNews Network

PO Box 60 62´31

22254 Hamburg

• • •

March 21, 2009

Updates from the European Roma and Travellers Forum

Filed under: General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 1:41 am

Some updates from the European Roma and Travellers Forum

Violence against Roma in Hungary – ERTF President to visit Hungary to asses situation

Strasbourg, 06.03.2009 – Racist violence, particularly the recent attacks against members of the Roma community in Hungary, and measures that need to be taken against discrimination will be some of the main topics that the European Roma and Travellers Forum, will assess during the four day high-level visit to Hungary starting on 09 March 2009.

Mr. Kawczynski, the President of the Forum and his team will visit villages in which Roma were the target of attacks from paramilitary groups, and will meet with Roma NGOs and Roma leaders. The President will also hold meetings with government representatives, the Parliamentary Commissioner for National and Ethnic Minority Rights, and leaders of political parties .

The European Roma and Travellers Forum is deeply concerned at the anti-Roma feelings spreading through the EU countries and fears that the Roma are being forced out of their homelands and to look for security elsewhere.


• • •

March 9, 2009

Cinema Cigani

Filed under: General,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 10:48 pm

This week I’m presenting a few clips from some of my favorite Romani* themed movies.

Clip from “Ko to tamo peva”

Ko To Tamo Peva (Who’s That Singing Over There?), 1980. Directed by Slobodan Sijan, filmed in Yugoslavia (Serbia)

From a youtube commenter: The two Gypsy musicians provide a running commentary through the film, like a Greek chorus. One of them plays an accordion and sings, while the other plays a Jew’s harp. The movie begins with them singing their recurring song, to which the refrain is “I’m miserable, I was born that way, I sing to sing my pain away, I wish Mama dear that I had but dreamt it all.” t’s about people taking a bus ride to Belgrade, just before the Second world war.

I have not seen this film and just came upon by chance when searching for other clips but it looks like the kind of film I’d be thrilled to see.

Scenes from Black Cat, White Cat. Bubamara by Saban Bajramovic

Black Cat, White Cat (Crna macka, beli macor), 1998. Directed by Emir Kusturica, filmed in Serbia

From IMDB: Grga Pitic and Zarije Destanov are two old friends – and rivals – who haven’t seen each other in years. But a series of events beyond their wildest dreams leads to a raucously funny reunion filled with gypsy mobsters, dirty deals and shotgun weddings.

A thoroughly enjoyable film, I recommend it for one of those days when you feel beat and you wonder why the world is so screwed up. The first thing I thought after seeing this film is “Why can’t every comedy movie be like this?” Okay, I’m simple but everything about this film is fantastic!

By the way, you might recognize the actress Branka Katic who plays the love interest, Ida from the HBO series Big Love.

Scene from the film Gadjo Dilo. Adrian Simionescu singing Tutti Frutti

Gadjo Dilo, 1997. Directed by Tony Gatliff, filmed in Romania.

From IMDB: Stéphane, a young French man from Paris, travels to Romania. He is looking for the singer Nora Luca, whom his father had heard all the time before his death. Wandering along a frozen road, he meets old Izidor, a member of the Roma (Gypsy) and tells him of Nora Luca. Izidor seems to understand and takes him to his village. Stéphane believes that Izidor will take him to Nora Luca when the time has come.

Tony Gatliff is a Romani (Gypsy) director, hence his numerous Romani (Gypsy) themed films. The beauty and fine music of Romanian Gypsies is what make this movie so extraordinary. The women have such a gorgeous and colorful style of dress. If I wasn’t so sensitive to cultural appropriation, I just might adopt their style of fashion. Actress Rona Hartner is thouroughly charming in her role as the Gypsy translator.

Interesting film review of Gadjo Dilo here.

Scene from Angelo My Love, The Pony Song

Angelo My Love, 1983. Directed by Robert Duvall, filmed in New York City

From IMDB: Angelo My Love delves into the little understood and fascinating world of New York gypsies. Using real gypsies playing fictional versions of themselves. This critically acclaimed film explores the lifestyle, rites, myths and passions of the tight-knit urban subculture. Twelve year-old Angelo Evans is the street-wise. Charmingly precocious son of a fortune teller. When the boy accuses a sleazy gypsy, Steve “Patalay” Tsigonoff, and his foul-mouthed wife, Millie, of stealing an ancestral ring, he chases them to Canada.

Angelo My Love is one of the most enjoyable movies I’ve ever watched but then again, I do have a thing for Romanies. Robert Duvall decided to make the film after being charmed by the real life Angelo. There are very few professional actors in the film, the cast is made up of his Roma family and friends. I recently met some Roma folks here in Los Angeles who said they have family that appears in this movie. Despite some of the not so favorable depictions, it seems many US Romanies love this film.

For a very good review of the film, please see here.

Arrincónamela by Gritos de Guerra from Vengo

Vengo, 2000. Directed by Tony Gatliff, filmed in Anadalucia, Spain

From IMDB: Caco is a proud, handsome man, head of a family, and very powerful in the local community. Yet he has been torn to pieces by the death of his beloved daughter. He constantly visits her grave, weeps silently at her photo and has transferred all his wildly protective love and attention onto his mentally challenged nephew, Diego.

I would love to have a party like this one day! This song is so infectiously catchy. It sticks in my head for days at a time. By the way, the woman singing to the left of the guitarist is Remedios Silva Pisa. Remember her because she is the focus of next week’s video selection.

Scenes from the movie La Faraona starring Lola Flores singing Un Mundo Raro.

La Faraona, 1955. Director Rene Cardona Jr., filmed in Mexico

A real gem of a movie made during the golden age of Mexican cinema. The story is of a young Gitana who moves back to Mexico from Spain when she receives news her rich uncle is on his death bed. Of course, she brings her Gitano tribu along with her and they all dazzle the Mexican family with their flashy Flamenco moves. I love the beginning scene where she attempts to speak Mexican Spanish and even attempts a grito. I wonder if my attempts at Flamenco jaleos sound like her gritos. Oh, oh. I also picked this scene because it features a more authentic kind of Flamenco and not the wild, skirt flipping personal style of Spanish dancing Lola Flores is famous for.

Hope you enjoyed this small sampling of clips. There are many more I’d love to share and perhaps one of these days I’ll get around to compliling a part two.

*Romani is the preferred term for the people known as Gypsies. Gitano or Calo is often used in Spain to describe Romanies and in the Balkans, Cigani or Tsigane is commonly used.

• • •

February 27, 2009

Los Farruco in Los Angeles!

Filed under: flamenco,General — Dos Lunares @ 8:02 pm

This Tuesday and Wednesday March 3 & 4 Los Farruco will be performing at UCLA Royce Hall. For aficionados of Gitano style Flamenco Puro, this show cannot be missed!

Los Farruco

Price: $38-$60; UCLA students, $17
405 Hilgard Avenue, Los Angeles, CA  90095
Renowned for its dazzling footwork, powerful athleticism and passionate intensity, the legendary flamenco family, Los Farruco, features three generations of dancers- all direct descendents of their late patriarch and flamenco master, El Farruco. Led by his twenty-year-old grandson, Farruco, who is rapidly gaining a reputation for his fiery and virtuosic performances, the Farruco clan also includes El Farruco’s daughters, the highly respected La Farruca and La Faraona, and second grandson, the elegantly reserved Barullo. Accompanied by two guitarists and three singers, Los Farruco promises a mesmerizing evening of traditional gypsy dance and music.
Tickets now $34 at the Goldstar website.
• • •
Powered by WordPress |•| Wordpress Themes by priss