Accordion Flamenco – Todd Wong sits in with guitarist Rod Malkin and dancer Elin

Flamenco accordion player named “El Toddo Don Wong”

love flamenco music.  My usual claim to flamenco fame, is that I have twice had dinner with flamenco guitarist legend Paco Pena.

But on Thursday night at the La Zuppa restaurant in North Vancouver, I sat in with guitarist Rod Malkin and dancer Elen Ghulam.  I was walking by the restaurant on Lonsdale Avenue and decided to have a listen.  The music was lovely, the space was intimate and friendly.  I spoke with the restaurant operators Juan Carlos and Vicky. We talked about the restaurant and flamenco music. They introduced me to Rod and Elen, and told them I play accordion.

Rod invited me to sit in with them. I had never played with a flamenco guitarist before.  But they were keen that I had shared my knowledge about attending Paco Pena's Misa Flamenco concert in Vancouver, and that I knew of Al Mozaico Flamenco's productions of “Cafe de Chinatas”.  It was a big stretch for me to improvise
freely, and I gained confidence to add flourishes. It was good enough
that the dancer took to the platform. A wonderful experience musically

It was a big challenge… I have been playing with a Celtic Ceilidh
group since Christmas… and learning to play accompaniment and fills. I
still go into shock and panic when somebody says “Accordion Solo” – but
playing with Robert last night was very cool – lots of listening to
each other, and just taking it slow… working in some flourishes. And
they kept me playing with them! 🙂

While at the restaurant, I discovered postcards for Mozaico Flamenco – the company founded and directed by Oscar Nieto and Kasandra La China in 2002.  I reviewed their show “Cafe De Chinatas” in 2006 at the Norman Rothstein Theatre and in 2006 at Edie's Hats on Granville Island.  I am thrilled that “Mozaico Flamenco” is going to be perform again
in November at the Scotiabank Dance Centre.

Look what I just discovered!
Flamenco Guitar with Accordion and performed in Edinburgh, Scotland

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