Eddie Izzard To Perform In Spain For First Time

Eddie Izzard, MadridIf you’re from the UK, you are probably familiar with the comedian Eddie Izzard. For those who are not, you may want to type his name into YouTube. Well, for the first time ever he will be performing in Spain – Madrid actually – and you have 6 nights to catch him. But the only downside is that the venue he is performing that only holds 100 people. Here’s what the website promoting the event has to say:

Internationally known Comedian Eddie Izzard will have played some of the biggest rooms all over the world by the time he arrives in Madrid for 6 of the most exclusive dates of the entire mammoth Force Majeure World Tour. He is the first ever Stand Up Comedian to have performed the Hollywood Bowl and is more often than not to be found in Arenas and other huge venues such as New York’s Madison Square Garden and London’s O2 Arena, so with just 100 seats a night these truly are special gigs , they are on a 1st come 1st served basis from the purchasing to the seating and we expect the to sell fast!

Tickets can be bought (if you’re lucky) from this website.

I’d also recommend you check out this interview by English journalist Simon Hunter with Eddie Izzard on El País.

La Bruja (The Witch) at the Teatro de la Zarzuela

According to Wikipedia, Zarzuela

is a Spanish lyric-dramatic genre that alternates between spoken and sung scenes, the latter incorporating operatic and popular song, as well as dance. The name derives from a Royal hunting lodge, the Palacio de la Zarzuela near Madrid, where this type of entertainment was first presented to the court.

thewitchThere are two main forms of zarzuela: Baroque zarzuela (c.1630–1750), the earliest style, and Romantic zarzuela (c.1850–1950), which can be further divided into two, main sub-genres of género grande and género chico although other sub-divisions exist.

Well, if you enjoy opera and can understand Spanish quite well, and you’re in Spain over the next couple of weeks, you could be in for a festive treat. The 150-year old Teatro de la Zarzuela is putting on one of the best works of the well-known (in Spain anyway!) composer Ruperto Chapi, La Bruja. If your Spanish is a little rusty and you would like to get the gist of what goes on, here’s a site that will offer you some advice. Alternatively, you can download the complete synopsis (pdf), in English and Spanish from the Teatro de la Zarzuela website. As someone whose musical tastes are quite varied, I would certainly recommend seeing this unique Spanish experience.

Dates
14th December, 2007 – 20th January, 2008

Location
Teatro de la Zarzuela,  Jovellanos, 4
Metro: Sevilla

Oh Baby it’s Cold Inside!

What happens if you put 250 tonnes of ice, 54 ice and snow artists and empty space in Madrid together?

Take a look at the video on this page to find out.

If you fancy going there, you will also find an ice rink and a couple of giant nativity scenes, amongst other things. The area is probably the heart of Madrid’s business district and has a number of shopping centres nearby.

Location
Azca (Metro: Nuevos Ministerios)

Christmas in Madrid 2007

Navidad_2007This looks like it’s going to be a bumper, fun-packed Christmas in Madrid. I have just taken a look at the Christmas agenda from the Madrid City Council tourist section and it looks like 2007 will be even better than 2006. I find that the build up to Christmas in Spain is much better than places like the UK, where trees, lights and other paraphernalia start appearing in November – Marks and Spencer and the like even start selling bloody Christmas puddings in October!

Even though the Christmas lights went on a week ago, many of the other activities are staggered over the Christmas period. Like last year the Plaza de Colón will be turned into a fairytale island. Nativity scenes will be found all over the city – often in churches, history museum – and the new headquarters of the Madrid City Council (in the Palacio de Cibeles) will hold the principal nativity scene, created by José Luis Mayo. If you have never seen these before, the ones in Madrid are often sights to behold.

The Plaza Mayor has the traditional Christmas stalls where you can buy trees, nativity figures and a number of annoying products – like spray snow and fluorescent lights – that kids love.

If you want to go ice skating, you can either go to Azca (Metro Nuevos Ministerios) or the Campo de Moro (Metro Príncipe Pío or Opera). I went to Azca last year with my wife and children and there was both an ice rink and mini toboggan run – both father and son loved it!

The Plaza de España will feature a craft fair from the 20th December to the th January, where around 200 stalls will be displaying mainly gifts from Madrid.

Nore information can be found on the esMadrid website.

Mad About Madrid Back Writing

I haven’t posted for a good, few weeks now. I have actually been to my wife’s village in El Barraco, near Avila. I had a good time, my son learnt to ride a bike; I actually saw a couple of bullfights (courtesy of free tickets from my brother-in-law); went on a quad ride; ate good food and drank one or two beers!

Anyway, here’s something that caught my eye this week. It looks like there will be a couple of new musicals starting in September. The first is Jesus Christ Superstar at the Teatro Lope de Vega. Starring Miquel Fernández, the Andrew Lloyd-Webber production will open its doors on the 20th September, 2007.

On October 4th, 2007 the popular Disney musical Beauty and the Beast (La Bella y la Bestia) will begin its 6-month run at the Teatro Coliseum. It stars Julia Möller, David Ordinas y Pablo Puyol and prices range from abround 24 Euros to 70 Euros.

Veranos de la Villa – Madrid’s Summer Festival

I must apologise to regular visitors to this blog for not having written an article for a while but I have been quite busy with work and developing my other website – Marketing Tom. Because of that I failed to write up about one of the big events in Madrid’s calendar, the Veranos de la Villa festival. This festival runs from the 2nd July until the 26th August and offers visitors and Madrileños the ability to see around 100 shows covering music, theatre, dance, circus events and zarzuela in some of the most important venues around the city. The Sabatini gardens (next to Palacio Real), Conde Duque, Plaza Mayor, Centro Cultural de la Villa and Teatro Español are just some of those locations.

Here’s a brief selection of singers who will perform – Liza Minelli, Laurie Anderson, Carlos Núñez, Andy & Lucas, David de María, Antonio Vega, Patricia Kraus and Mercedes Ferrer, Diego el Cigala, Yossou N’ Dour. Flamenco artists include: José Mercé, Carmen Linares, José Menese, Rafaela Carrasco, Manuel Molina, La Negra and Esperanza Fernández. The Patio Conde Duque will host the Boston Ballet and the Legend Lin Dance Theatre and Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess is performed by the New York Harlem Theatre.

Classsic Spanish plays like Calderón de la Barca’s Casa con dos puertas mala es de guardar and Shakespeare’s Cymbelline will be performed in the Jardines de Galileo.

All in all, there’s something for everyone.

For more (much more) information, take a look at the Veranos de la Villa microsite from EsMadrid.

Madrid Flamenco Festival – Suma Famenca – Returns for 2nd Year

6a00d8341cb24853ef00e54f25ebb08834-640wi
This week sees the start of Suma Flamenca, a Flamenco Festival put on by the Madrid City Council. It brings together some of the biggest names in Flamenco and offers the possibility of seeing dance, singing and instrumental shows. Some of the hottest names in Flamenco will be in town this week, including José Menese, Enrique Morente, El Güito, Sara Baras, José Mercé, Serranito, Tomatito and Carmen Linares

The shows will take place both within Madrid, in venues such as Teatro Albéniz, Círculo de Bellas Artes and the Fundación Olivar del Castillejo and there will also be events held in Madrid’s surrounding areas. Top Flamenco venues such as El Corral de la Morería, Café de Chinitas and Casa Patas will also be holding special shows.

The festival runs from the 7th – 26th May, 2007; take a look at the Suma Flamenca website to find out about the shows and calendar.

I Love Paris (in Madrid!)

6a00d8341cb24853ef00e54f0de30e8833-640wiOn the 13th, 14th and 15th April, 2007 the Madrid Players are putting on a show called I Love Paris Spring Revue. According to their blog, I Love Paris:

is a tribute to the music of the City of Lights: by the American composers who fell under her spell, and the French artistes who have served as her ambassadors to the world. From Irving Berlin to Jacques Brel, from Cole Porter to Edith Piaf, The Madrid Players’ newest musical revue will feature some of the best songs of Broadway and the Grands Boulevards, all with that certain je ne sais quoi of Parisian flair!

The Madrid Players are an amateur group, comprising some 60 people, which was fouunded thirty years ago. One third of the proceeds of the show will go to Alanda, an NGO for children with autism spectrum disorders. For more information an ticket details, visit the Madrid Players website.

Christmas in the Plaza de Colón

I went to a cool, outdoor spectacular last night in the Plaza de Colón. For the Christmas period (2006)in the Plaza they have turned the area into a recreation area for children, complete with covered tents. However, last night I went with my wife and 4 year-old to see an outdoor show just next to the stone monuments of the plaza. It comprised a water fountain show, which played ´in tune´ with some well-known classical music (don´t ask me to name the music!) and an aerial spectacle, where dancers were elevated above the ground on a crane. It lasted over 30 minutes, and boy did my shoulders hurt with my son on them!, but was well worth it. The show starts at 8pm with another at 9.30pm. I believe it will be on every night for the next week.

Metro
Colón

Rubén Olmo Stars as Bullfighter Belmonte

It seems like there has been quite a flood of flamenco shows going on in Madrid recently. Well, here´s another show to add to that list: Belmonte, starring one of Flamenco´s contemporary stars – Rubén Olmo. It is loosely based on the life of one of the 2oth Century´s great bullfighters, Juan Belmonte and runs from the 5th to 10th September, 2006 at the Teatro Albeniz. Ticket prices cost from 15 to 22 Euros.

Cumbre Flamenca en el Metro de Madrid

For the second year running Metro de Madrid will be holding the Cumbre Flamenca en el Metro de Madrid (Flamenco "Festival") in the city. From the 11th to the 15th September 2006, It will be inviting some of the top names in Flamenco, like María Pagés, El Capullo de Jerez, Niña Pastori, Mayte Martín and Enrique de Melchor, to perform in the Hall of Nuevos Minsiterios Metro Station. Aside from the great names is the great price: FREE. All performances take place at 10 p.m.

Summer Suggestions From El Pais

Just came across a guide on the El Pais website about things that you can do in Madrid over summer. It includes some neat little video clips of some of the city’s attractions, including the Plaza de ventas, the Aquariem, Xanadu, Parque de Attraciones (fun fair), the Botanic gardens and one on Madrid’s terrazas. There is a link on the main page to EP3 which gives details on upcoming events going on in the city.

Veranos de la Villa 2006

Veranos de la VillaFrom Flamenco, to Hip Hop and from Dance to Jazz, Madrid’s Summer Festival Veranos de la Villa has something for everyone. The venues for this popular event include the Sabatini Gardens (next to the Royal Palace),
the Retiro Park, the Plaza Mayor, Centro Cultural Conde Duque and various cinemas and theatres. One of the busiest venues will be the Jardines de Sabatini which has various cycles: from musical, jazz and flamenco

You can view the full programme by downloading the Veranos de La Villa brochure (pdf) from the MuniMadrid site or alternatively you can view, if you the patience and like badly created flash sites, the "official" website for this festival. EsMadrid also has a breakdown (in Spanish) of the main events, too.

Antología De La Danza Española

jota_1I had an email a few days back from Victor whose company is promoting the Antología De La Danza Española (or the Anthology of Spanish Dance) at the Teatro La Latina. The show features a number of different styles that can be found in Spanish dance, from folklore and Bolero and Flamenco and the Jota. The show certainly looks spectacular and runs until the 2nd July, with prices starting from 15 Euros.

Times

Wed, Thurs & Fri: 8 p.m.

Sat: 7 p.m. & 10 p.m.

Sun: 6 p.m. & 9 p.m.

Ticket Sales
Box Office or Entradas.com

Address: Pza. Cebada, 2
Metro: Latina .