Last night we attended a concert of Estrella Morente at Symphony Center in Chicago. Morente is the daughter of the famous Enrique Morente (1942-2010), flamenco singer, and dancer Aurora Carbonell. Her father became her mentor with whom she has sung since she was 7.
Estrella’s performance (including some dance and fan and a spectacular dress change) was passionate, dramatic, and animated. Flamenco music is the blues of Spain filled with “duende,” and Estrella pushed that mojo. With a sometimes cracking sometimes rough sounding voice balanced by a clear and incredibly controlled sound, Estrella’s cante is at once ancient, archetypical and simultaneously immediate, present, and very very genuine.
Fernando Trueba —Spanish book editor, screenwriter, film director, and producer– says Estrella’s voice “is like a confession.” Stunned by its compelling intimacy, I must whole-heartedly agree.