Docpoint – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival


La Singla

A young woman learns from her teacher of a forgotten flamenco master and is fascinated by the archive material she finds. That’s where the dive into the flamenco rhythms of 1950s Spain begins, and the mystery named Antonia Singla starts to unravel.

In her time better known by her stage name La Singla, the dancer grew up on Barcelona’s Somorrostro Beach in the same Romani community as another flamenco superstar, Carmen Amaya, twenty years before her. La Singla rose to prominence as a teenager with her starring role in the Oscar-nominated film Los Tarantos. In addition to her flamenco skills, La Singla was considered an exceptional dancer, because she had been deaf from an early age and learned to dance by sensing the vibrations of music and imitating the rhythm from her mother.

Paced by the rhythms of flamenco and illustrated by archive material, the film sheds light on La Singla’s life story. Through the many performance recordings, the viewer gets to witness the captivating movements of the dancer. The flowing hair, the sharp twirls and rhythmic gait make an impression, and everything is crowned with the fiery gaze. However, all traces of La Singla end to the year 1968. Over the years, the name of the dancer who once posed for Salvador Dali and toured in Europe has faded into oblivion, and no one seems to know where she vanished from the stages. Throughout the documentary, this mystery moves like a shadow behind everything, until one clue leads to another…

The story of La Singla carries away even those who are not familiar with flamenco. Futhermore, the film is a sight for sore eyes to all the friends of monochrome, since the archives of La Singla’s photographer friend are used generously.

Sabriina Hietaniemi

Language: Spanish, German
Subtitles: English
Length: 95 min
Age Limit: K7
Year: 2023
Production Country: Spain, Germany

Director: Paloma Zapata
Producer: Paloma Zapata, Nadja Smith, Paola Sainz de Baranda
Production Company: La Fabriqua Naranja, Inselfilms, Malandar Films
Distribution Company: Rise And Shine World Sales
Screenplay: Paloma Zapata
Editing: Paloma Zapata
Cinematographer: Inaki Gorraiz, Dani Mauri
Music: Juliane Heinemann
Sound Design: Hannes Schulze