If you are in the mood for a little Spanish fiesta, head down to Chijmes this weekend (19/20 April) and experience the vibrancy and colour of The Feria de Abril (The April Fair). This fair has been held in Seville, Spain for more than 150 years, and now lasts for a whole week. Hundreds of Casetas (decorated marquee tents) are set up, and inside people dance the many forms of Flamenco and Sevillanas throughout the night.

The Singapore Feria is on a much smaller scale but I was there last year and was bowled over by the wonderful enthusiasm of the many dancers; some professional, but mostly amateur. Most people dress in flamenco costumes, with lots of polka dots, flowers in hair, big loop earrings, and shawls. Some children had amazing costumes from Spain, others had costumes they had put together themselves.

There are performances on both days by local groups and guests, including Antonio Vargus and his company dancing Farruca and Solea. And in true Feria style, there is plenty of time for the audience to get up and dance Sevillanas. This is wonderful opportunity for anyone learning Sevillanas to really experience the joy and passion of Spanish dance.

Tickets are actually sold out for this year's shows, but don't let that stop you, as the Casetas, or tent, is largely open and you can enjoy the performances from the outside. Organisers say that there may be a few tickets at the gate for the Sunday show if you do want to take the chance, otherwise enjoy everything from outside. You can enjoy the Spanish Tapas and drinks from here too.

There will also be an exhibition tent which is free to enter, and will include displays of Spanish Wine, Photography, clothing and artists as well as some flamenco goods for sale. Sevillanas lessons will take place here on both days, and everyone is welcome to join in. Sevillanas is a folk dance from Seville, and a fun, easy dance to learn, especially great for children as the steps are simple (although there are much more complicated variations). The whole dance is actually a story about love, told in four short dances.


The performances begin at 7pm both evenings, but the Casetas will be open from 6pm, and the tapas and drinks can be purchased.

For more information, go to http://www.flamencoasia.com/
Chijmes, 30 Victoria Street, across from City Hall MRT, exit A

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