Flamenco Music In Kraków

Kraków always surprises you. Every day there are some concerts where you can listen to international live music in a cafe. It does not matter if you are thousands of kilometres from the place where the music was born, in Kraków you can attend shows featuring all kind of music. It is even possible to see Flamenco spectacles.

Today we present a Flamenco group born in Kraków and formed by an Italian and two Poles. They are Marco Trimboli (cajón), Marysia Światłoń (voice) and Michał Krygowski (guitar), and they started to play together one year ago – although their romance with Flamenco began long ago. Here is their story of how Spanish music became part of their life.

Krakow Post: How did you first connect with Flamenco music?
Marysia Światłoń : When I was 16 years old, my mother wanted me to dance Flamenco. First I thought it was not my thing, but when I saw my teacher dancing, and it was really amazing. I took dancing lessons  for six years and I had my first singing lesson when I had to pass my exam. In the beginning, singing was horrible for me. When I listened to Camaron my first impression was ‘Why is he doing this strange thing with his voice? What does it mean?’ It was difficult to learn.

Michał Krygowski: My story is like that of many guitarists in Poland, I heard Paco de Lucia and Camaron and I just loved it! I went to Andalucia for one month and I visited many cities looking for Flamenco. I came back to Poland, one guitarist from Kraków gave me some lessons, and I joined some Flamenco groups.

Marco Trimboli: My story is more related to cajón than to Flamenco. I was playing a drum set for 10 years. When I went to Spain, I discovered this instrument and I started playing it. Months later, I joined one group of Rumba-Flamenco. One day, our dancer Tania, went to a concert and invited me to play in Por Fiesta (ul. Warszawska 17) in the Flamenco classes. I discovered flamenco there thanks to Michał. I love playing this music. Michał is my maestro, my guide.

flamenco1Michał Krygowski and Marysia Światłoń in a rehearsal

Are people open to listening to Flamenco music in Kraków?

Marysia: People do not know what Flamenco is. They have an idea about it, but it is very stereotyped.

Marco: To propose a show like this is little difficult in Kraków…

Michał: But it is possible, because when people hear live music it is completely different, you transmit something with the music, they can feel it. It is another story. In Spanish they call it “duende”.

Marysia: I agree with Michał. One day I was trying to convince my friends to come to see us. I played Juana la de la Pipa, one of the most famous Flamenco singers from Jerez. Her voice is like a man’s, and my friends were fascinated. They thought it was weird, but they wanted to listen too. It is something different from what they had ever heard before.

What is the best of Flamenco and the most complicated thing for you?

Marco: The rhythm. When I started to play, it was very difficult because it is quite complicated to understand. It was challenging, you really have to feel it, it is fundamental… You can play perfectly, but if you don’t feel it, it doesn’t sound good. I want to discover more, it is what keeps me interested, that’s why I want to learn more and more. What I also like more about Flamenco is the joy of doing it.

Marysia: The most complicated thing is the rhythm too. For me it is difficult to catch all the things together. The best is that I feel I found the perfect way to express myself. I don’t like the attitude of some foreigners who think that we cannot do Flamenco because we are not Spanish or gypsy people. I love spending my time, playing and singing. Flamenco lyrics are very interesting when you try to read them from our Polish perspective. All this culture is beautiful.

Michał: For many years, the most difficult was to understand what it means to play Flamenco with your heart, feeling the energy, what they call “duende”. I always heard about it but for Polish people it is very difficult. What I like more in Flamenco is singing. Paco de Lucia said that all guitarists are frustrated singers and I think it is the truth. Sometimes I tried, but I don’t have the voice, I would like to learn some day.

Marysia: In Poland it is not the classical way of singing. Enrique Morente said that in the case of singing you have a triangle: heart, rhythm and voice. If you feel it in that way, you can transmit. If you enjoy it, the audience will do too.

flamenco2Photo by Aleksandra Zapolska

Front page photo by Wojtek Iskierka

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