LOS VIVANCOS: EXTREME FLAMENCO FUSION.
Coliseum St Martin’s Lane WC2N 4ES 9 July 2013.
Runs 1hr 30min No interval.
Review: William Russell 9 July
A perfect storm.
Los Vivancos are seven brothers who perform flamenco, although it is flamenco as you have never seen it before. The troupe has performed all over Europe and Central America, but this pulsating show – the testosterone on stage is breathtaking – is their British debut, a calling card you might say.
The music from the all-female, on-stage band thumps, the drums beat, heels tap and the lighting display is almost as amazing as what the brothers, dancers and musicians in their own right in other forms – Cristo was a principal dancer with Scottish ballet for three years, Elias was principal ’cellist with the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra – get up to.
Quite apart from dancing up a storm they each play an instrument, sometimes in positions that defy gravity. Elias plays suspended mid-air doing the splits. Josua dances on top of a box, a kind of skiffle affair, and manages to turn it on its side and then restore it to its proper position without missing a beat.
If there is a flaw in this dazzling evening it’s that they tend to end each sequence by turning the spotlights on the audience, blinding one just at the point one wanted to applaud as loudly as possible. They also have a slight tendency to outdo whatever impossible athletic feat it is they have just performed, so one is stopped mid-clap.
The highlight comes last when they finally take off their shirts to reveal torsos toned to perfection and dance blindfolded twirling large rods the while – or maybe it is the moment they turn their backs on the audience and wiggle their bottoms. These boys know their audience. Or perhaps it is just one highlight after another.
London is not short of flamenco shows but it has never had one quite like this. The brothers – Elias, Judah, Josua, Cristo, Israel, Aaron and Josue – are quite simply magnificent.