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As far as folk dance forms go, flamenco enjoys a wide following in Washington. Several studios offer classes, a handful of semipro companies perform around town, and every winter, the Flamenco Festival brings the warmth of the Iberian Peninsula to the Lisner Auditorium. This year, the Spanish embassy and cultural ministry have put some extra euros behind the event, which has dancers and musicians jetting back and forth on the Andalusian Express—er, the Acela—between New York and Washington. In D.C., the festival continues tonight with a performance by the fiery Olga Pericet (shown). When she performed at Sadler’s Wells in London earlier this month, a Guardian critic described her as a “diminutive figure with a towering presence, her fierce energy caged within a steely technique.” Tonight’s show, “Rosa, Metal, y Ceniza” (“Rose, Metal, and Ash”) is more theatrical than your average flamenco performance, and finds Pericet collaborating with up to four singers (called cantaores) as well as a stage director and guest contemporary dancers. Tomorrow night’s performance by Ballet Flamenco Manuela Carrasco promises a more traditional gypsy-style flamenco show, and the festival concludes Wednesday with another evening of fusion: Rafaela Carrasco’s company, with a live band, dancing to songs by the poet Federico García Lorca.
Flamenco Festival continues tonight, Saturday, and Wednesday at the Lisner Auditorium at George Washington University, 730 21st St. NW. $35-$65. lisner.org/flamenco. (202) 994-6800.