16 OCTOBER 1953, Page 12


THE tradition in Spanish dancing, like that of the East, is so strong and so jealous as to permit of no appreciable growth—at least that is the evidence up till today. In the eighteenth century a few classical steps did creep into Spanish dancing, but there it ended. None of the attempts at fresh inventive choreography by the companies we have seen since the war—and they have comprised Spain's most celebrated dancers —has shown any development of the art whatsoever. It is not therefore to the detriment of Pilar Lopez herself to say that her least satisfactory numbers are tho§e which have been " rearranged " ; nor any criticism of her ability as an exccutant to pick out her male dancers as giving the greatest pleasure, and generally being the

fecal point of our eyes.. For, in the dances of Spain it is the man who plays the more active and glorious role—probably quite natural in a country where, even today, women still remain comparatively secluded and guarded.

Pilar Lopez is a handsome woman, with beautiful carriage and grandeur of manner. In such a dance as La Maja y el Ruisenar from the Fantasia Goyesca,suite, she proudly and leisurely invites her partners to compete for her favours. In Los Cabales she is the flame to which the men, like moths, are irresistibly drawn. Zapateado, to the well- known music of Sarasate, is splendidly danced by Paco de Ronda and Alberto Lorca. The latter was the star of Monday evening's performance and the audience was reluctant to let him go after his brilliant and immensely musical A lborada del Gracioso.