Wheelchair Flamenco”Hecho a Mano!” is a group of seven amateur flamenco dancers, probably the only one of its kind in the world. They had six months to get ready for their big performance.
These women perform because they want to show that they are alive, that they exist. In the same way, as a way of proving their existence, discriminated people once created flamenco.
Flamenco’s sincerity and vigour have
not always been applauded in the palaces, for flamenco and theatre often express the same things. In flamenco, all theatre genres from tragedy to comedy and from romanticism to irony are represented.
In flamenco, the legs are very important. In a wheelchair, flamenco rhythms cannot be made with stomping feet; pride cannot be expressed by standing as straight as possible. Therefore, the group’s coach has designed completely new means of expression for the group.
“Like flamenco is in any case sort of a, well, ‘we know who we are, and everybody else can get lost’ dance, and it’s filled me a bit with a kind of strength.”
“There have been the kind of men who tapped me on the head and said, ‘what a cutie’. But in my opinion it’s not cute; I’d like to bite.”
“Someone might think here’s a bunch of handicapped making fools of themselves,
‘disgusting!’ But I’m not scared!”
“But in this group, I’ve somehow found my place since we’re all so strange here.”
2004 Finland, 26’