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.

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June 25, 2010

Los Portuguéses

Filed under: clips,Portugal,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 9:29 am

Tangos Portugueses ciganos antigos

World Cup has been my obsession these past few weeks at the expense of all my other interests. I can’t help thinking though about the respective Romani communities of the countries I’m watching playing on the field. For instance, this morning, Portugal, made me think of Ramón el Portugués (who is actually from Spain) and while searching for one of his famous tangos, I came across this excellent clip of Portuguese Gitanos. Amazingly distinct from their cousins across the border in Spain, their music sounds more ancient, more North African. The Moorish influence is very apparent.

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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.

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January 22, 2010

Django Reinhardt

Filed under: clips,Gypsy Jazz,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 10:31 pm

Django Reinhardt – J’attendrai Swing 1939

Los Angeles Times article got me thinking about Django:

Django Reinhardt: The original Guitar Hero?

Saturday marks what would have been the 100th birthday of guitarist Django Reinhardt, and one thing the Gypsy jazz innovator is often credited with is helping elevate the guitar from a supporting role to a lead player in his vibrant take on early American jazz.

Read more here.

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January 20, 2010

Actions, Conversations, and Intersections

Filed under: event,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 1:26 am


Actions, Conversations, and Intersections
an exhibition of participatory projects at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery January 24 – April 18, 2010

Dos Lunares presents a weekend journey into Romani/Gypsy culture and music with a film screening, discussion and an interactive Flamenco performance.

More details coming soon!

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January 16, 2010

El Peret

Filed under: clips,flamenco,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 12:17 am


I’m in the midst of reading Little Money Street: In Search of Gypsies and Their Music in the South of France, a nice little book on French Catalan Gitanos. It mostly focuses on the popular group Tekameli. But whenever I hear ‘Catalan rumbas’ my mind automatically goes to Peret and his charming rumbas. He is the master of the style.

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January 7, 2010


Filed under: Film Series,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 12:04 am

Happy New Year!

Some exciting events coming up this year! In March Dos Lunares will be presenting a program at the Barnsdall Municipal Art Gallery, more info coming soon.

For now, I am excited by the trailer for Tony Gatliff’s new film Liberté. The visuals go along with the book I’m currently reading Zoli by Colum McCann.

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December 18, 2009

Favorite Video of the Week: Los Niños Flamencos

Filed under: clips,flamenco,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 2:03 am

I have a special fondness for children who develop arte at an early age. Considering how distracted kids are these days by computer and TV screens, it’s inspiring to see youngins so adeptly demonstrate compas and sentimiento in their baile and cante. The following are two clips that have blown me away!

Battle between El Piky y El Banana recorded in Algemesi (Andalucia)

Lole y Manuel accompany a film clip of Gitanos in the country

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November 22, 2009

Favorite Video of the Week: Cigány tánc (Gypsy dance)

Filed under: clips,Romani — Dos Lunares @ 9:41 am

From the description: Archival film of Gypsy dances from the village of Királyháza.

Happy Sunday!

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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.

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