Francisco “El Rubio” is one of the founder members of the Revezo. (A popular word meaning, short break) It was founded in 1994 in Benagalbón, and its aim was to bring back the verdiales to the public and to the streets. It has now become a tourist attraction, which according to Francisco is its greatest achievement.
We have managed to make this a great clash of the bands held in September. More than 9,000 people came to the event this year and the competition has established itself as one of the big events in the area.
Francisco recognizes that it would not happen without the total participation of the people of Benagalbón. They are determined to make it the best possible down to every last detail.
Over the passage of time, Flamenco has become the dominant art form in the area, but the Verdiales is much older. It evokes the Dionysian worship of the god Bacchus Cybele on the summer and winter solstices.
El Rubio goes on to explain that the Verdiales has always belonged to the popular and peasant culture. “We wanted to take it back into the streets and to the people as it should be”. One of the initiatives, the Verdiales School, welcomes more that 25 students of dance, drummers and sting musicians from all ages. The classes are free and the instruments are provided, and this year, for the first time the classes were held in the Benagalbón Centre for Folk law.
Francisco laments that the lack of institutional support means that the committee has to meet in the library or the bar, when it is closed. He believes it is an important art from that should, and must be preserves for future generations.
This news article has been translated by members of the New Residents and Foreign Association of Malaga. If you would to become a member or further details please contact Aprile Winterstein 630927226.