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Streetswings dance history logo for the Fandango
Fandango Dance History Logo

         The Fandango [Fan-Dang-Go] is a dance native to Spain and Mexico. The Spanish are said to have invented the Fandango (meaning 'Go and Dance') as a courtship dance. However, the primative Fandango may go all the way back to Phoenician soil and Belly Dancers. Originally, The FANDANGO was ALWAYS DANCED by ONLY TWO PERSONS who never touched each other with the body or the hand, but face each other. However many may be admitted into it (thus become more of a sequidilia.) This courtship dance is one of "The Chase," basically boy sees girl, girl snubs boy, girl chases boy, then runs away. The Fandango may go all the way back to ancient Rome, while Romans called it the

Spanish Dance but it was probably the Fandango dance. The Tarentella and Furlana are similar dances, with the main exception of the couple touching each other. The Fandango has been portrayed in many ballets as well. By the 19th century it was said the Fandango was scarely danced and was replaced by the Jota, Sevillana and Bolero.

    The primitive Fandango could not be executed in a drawing-room of moderate size as the dancers would sometimes make sets (groups). The woman accompanied herself by castanets, The feet stamp the time accents, in the absence of castanets the fingers and thumbs are snapped indicating the measure (slow 6/8) by a graceful movement of the feet, of the heel. The gentleman tosses a tambourine; (or a tambour de basque, which, however, is now out of use), this he strikes with little bells, seeming, as it were, to invite his companion to accompany him in gesticulation, sometimes he also has only castanets, however this was usually, but not always deemed as efeminate. At the end of certain measures, the music halts abruptly and the dancers remain froze until it is resumed.

     This dance requires a costume. The woman adopts the short skirt of bright-colored silk, and adorns it with flounces of black blonde lace. The gentleman wore an embroidered, braided waistcoat. The guitar furnishes the orchestra while dancing, both male and female alternately playing the same air, both keep time to its measure. The Fandango is said to be a foundation to all the other Spanish Dances.

     The progress of the Fandango, a highly boasted dance, is one of the proofs which, backed by the decisions of the Spaniards, establishes the Fandango as the leading dance of Spain, along with the Flamenco and as the one which stands in the highest estimation. Their other dances are scarcely anything more than imitations of it, and are looked upon as second rate.

     Some music is of or a mix of 3/8, 3/4, 6/8 time. Some variations are -- the Malagueña (aka: Flamenco), the Rondena, the Granadina and the Murciana. The Chica dance of Africa is said to be the Fandango, only was a much calmer version. The use of Castanets, Guitars or a Mandolin, the arms and hands play an important role. Many Roman dances are said to be compared to the Fandango. The Plugge-dansen (Holland) was also a kind of fandango.

     The Menuet Afandango is partly composed of the Minuet and Fandango. The Jaleo de Xeres and the Ole' are somewhat similar to the Fandango, their charm consisting in their rapid combination of gestures and motions, and are said to be in high favor among the Andalusians. The former is not unfrequently introduced in stage ballets.

    Zapateado, El (form of Flamenco,) This is the same sort of movement as the Guaracha, and is in the time of 3/8. There is in this dance a considerable noise made by the feet. Its steps are struck, as it were, similar to the Anglais and the Sabottière.

    Carlos Blasis states in his book "The Code Of Terpischore" in 1830 states:
"America is not the only country that has been influenced by Africa in dancing; From the Moors it was that Spain first received that dance now so peculiar to it, the Fandango, which is nothing else than the Chica , under a more decent form, the climate and other circumstances not permitting the performance of this latter with all its native concomitants. The origin of this dance is very difficult to discover; but every thing in it seems to be the effect of a burning climate, and ardent constitutions. The Fandango is danced by two persons, and accompanied by the castanets, an instrument made of walnut wood, or of ebony.

    The music is in the time of 3/8, and is a rapid movement. The sound of the castanets, and the movements of the feet, arms, and body, keep time to it to the greatest nicety. It is all life and action in the Fandango. It was formerly danced much more generally by persons of quality, after the regulations enacted for the theatre, which introduced more dignity, more formality, and unaccompanied by the slightest movement that could give offence to modesty, or shock good taste. The lower orders, amongst whom this dance is in high request, accompany it with attitudes which savour of the vulgarity of the principal performers, and their extravagant movements never slacken, never cease, till they are fairly tired out"... end Blasis.

    In choreographing the dance, the dancers if solo, duette, or quartette, all used castinettes. If corps of eight, or sixteen half castinettes and half used tambourines. If solo, the dancer came on from L. 2d ex.. If for more, half came on from each side of stage. If more than a duette form in column of 2s down center of the stage.

More Photos | Flamenco Dance | Spanish Dance | Gypsy Dance

Birth Place

Creation Date

Creator

Dance Type

Spain 17th Century n/a Courtship
 

Posters, Lobby Cards etc.

Sheet Music Covers

Video Clips (pop-up)

Music Titles

n/a 1884 - Spanish Fandango Video Clip not available at this time Alegrias (MP3)
  1967 - Fandancgo de la Cava Video Clip not available at this time Charanga (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Como Me Ahoga (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Dance A Cachucha, Fandango, Bolero (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Dance Of The Miller's Wife (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time España (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Evening In Granada CD
           
Video Clip video pop up
Fandango (Santiago de Murcia)
           
Video Clip video pop up
Fandango de Banyeres
            Video Clip not available at this time Fandango del Albaicin (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Fandango in d minor (Soler)
            Video Clip not available at this time Fandango de huelva
            Video Clip not available at this time Fandangos grandes
            Video Clip not available at this time Fandango Polkas (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Gitano Señoron
            Video Clip not available at this time Goyescas: Fandango By Lamplight (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time Introduction & Fandango (MP3) | also 2 (MP3)
            Video Clip not available at this time La Bruxa
            Video Clip not available at this time The Rodrigo Collection (CD)
            Video Clip not available at this time Zorongo Gitano (CD)
               
 

Night Clubs

Theaters

Locations

n/a Teatro Filarmonico of Verona Madrid
            Sacred College or Ecclesiastical Court
            Spain
             
 
Video Clips (pop-up)

Films and related movies / Clips

Television

Ballets / Stage

Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1896 - Tambourine Dance by Annabelle 1983 - Fandango 1877 - Le Fandango
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1898 - Castinet Dance Have Gun Will Travel (Fandango)  1923 - A Royal Fandango
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1901 - 'Jarabe' Dance, Streets of Mexico, Pan-Am Expo.   1992 - Fandango (Galante)
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1901 - Sevillenas Dance       The Gondoliers
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1903 - Fandango (Mlle. Roméro)       Three Cornered Hat
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1928 - Fandango (Lupino Lane)            
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1936 - El Embrujo del Fandango (Carmen Amaya)            
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1942 - Goyescas (Imperio)            
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1941 - Gypsy Dance      

Publications

Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1943 - Three Cornered Hat       1995 - Fandango by Ure
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1947 - Song of Scheherazade        
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1948 - Fandango (de carlo)            
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1954 - Cirkus Fandango ?            
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1959 - Seguidillas y fandango (Huéscar)            
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1963 - Fandango d'Onil            
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1969 - Fandango      

Clothing Patterns

Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
1972 - Fandango de Yecla       Butterick # 3660 (Fandango)
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1985 - Fandango? [DVD]        
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1997 - Fairfax Fandango ?            
Not Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window. 1998 - Foto Fandango ?            
Viewable thru a Youtube Video Pop-up window.
2000 - Fandango            
 

Other Related Dances of the time...

Andalusan Furlana Makil dantza Plugge-Dansen Tango
Bolero Gigue Malagueña Rondeña Tarentella
Chaconne Gypsy Mambo Saltarello Tap
Chica Ikuriñari Minuet Afandango Sarabande Ustai dantza
Contradanza Jaleo Ole' Seguidilla Zambra
Farrúca Jarabe Pandanggo Sa Ilaw Sevillina Zapateado
Flamenco Jota Paso Doble  Spanish  
 

Dancers, Choreographers etc.

Political

Basque Girls Mlle. Subra (1877) n/a
Cascarrot Girls Vincent Escudero (1935)  
Carmen Amaya Yvonne De Carlo (1948)  
Lucero Tena y Gabriel Moreno    
 

Books, Magazine Articles on the dance...

Title

Author

Date

Publisher

The Code Of Terpischore Blasis, Carlo 1830 London
World History Of Dance Sachs, Curt 1936 Norton & Company
 

Musicians, etc.

Artists

Poets / Writers

ALBÉNIZ, Isaac (1860-1909) Guadalupe Posada Cassanova (c. 1767)
Luigi Boccherini (1743-1805) $ Jean Victor Adam  (c. 1840) Chevalier Bourgoing (c. 1700)
de Falla, Manual (1876-1946) Maynard Dixon  
Granados, Enrique $      
de Murcia, Santiago $
     
Rodrigo, Joaquin $      
'Sabicas', Agustin Castellon Campos (1913-1990)      
     
Soler, Padre Antonio (1729-1783)      
Zortico       
 

Misc. Research Words that may be related ... to help your searches

Arin-arin  fadango, (from fado) Reinos de las Indias  Folklorico  
Castanets Pantaloons Tecolero (Dance Master)    
 

Other...

n/a