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LA CHANA

LA CHANA

LUCIJA STOJEVIC · Spain/Iceland · 2016 · 83 mins · NOT RATED · Spanish with subtitles
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Please note: the printed Cinecenta film guide lists the second show as 9:20pm, but that is incorrect. 8:50pm is the correct showtime.

Flamenco is an incredibly emotive dance style. It had its origins in what is now Spain and was heavily influenced by the Gitanos, local gypsies. Originally the dancing was accompanied by no music, only singing and the clapping of hands. But nowadays, this tradition uses guitars and other instruments.

This documentary presents the return of La Chana (Antonia Santiago Amador), the flamenco queen, after a 23-year absence. "I was born to dance." she says. "I would lie awake all night long, repeating the rhythms in my head until they became part of me."

This self-taught flamenco artist reflects upon her long and arduous career where she traveled the world and performed her often improvised dancing to appreciative audiences. Her absence was precipitated by abuse from her husband. Now afflicted with diabetes and a bum knee, she prepares for a final testament to her passion for flamenco. The most gifted masters of this dance form exhibit duende, an internal sense of intensified emotional flow. This possessed state of being is expressed in the final flamenco dance by La Chana.

--Spirituality and Practice  

Proves that no matter how long you have been down, if you find the strength in yourself to carry on, you can never be counted out. La Chana is one of the best crowd pleasers at the Hot Docs festival this year, but also a poignant look at one woman’s journey back from an abusive situation. It’s a biography that isn’t only inspiring, but also important. Toronto Film Scene
A whirlwind of passion and thrilling performances infuses this tautly edited profile of Spanish flamenco dance legend. Toronto Star
Cast La Chana
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