The Flamenco is one of the most traditional artistic expression forms of Spain. Flamenco is composed by three main aspects: the dance or baile, the singing or canto, and guitar playing called tocar la guitarra. Typical Flamenco would combine these three aspects into one unique expression which could not be found at any other place of the world in equal manner.
The origins of Flamenco are strongly attached to the gypsies and to the Spanish region of Andalucía. Gypsies are considered to be among the first ones in playing, dancing and singing Flamenco, and the Andaluces, the people from Andalucía, have had an important role in its origins and development as well. Besides them, Flamenco has received several other influences, and its origins can not be traced to one unique spot.
The XIX century was one of the most important within the history of Flamenco. During this century, and especially during the last decades, this dance started taking the final shape it would have and after which it is known nowadays. During this époque, Flamenco started being sang, danced and played at cafés, which would then become a very popular art expression form and would keep taking place in cafes around all Spain in future times.
During the first decades of the XX century, some Flamenco expressions acquired a few new characteristics by, for example, receiving influences from South America, such as the fandangos and the cantos de ida y vuelta. Some Flamenco expressions would still conserve their original characteristics, and could still be observed as they were in their first decade. An example of the most traditional Flamenco would be a typical cante jondo or an ópera flamenca.
During the second half of the XX century, Flamenco started being spread throughout all Spain as well as becoming much more known in the entire world. Since those years on, Flamenco would not only be danced, singed, and played in local and typical tablados, but in many other places as well, becoming a major characteristic of the Spanish culture and one of the main aspects of it through which this country is known throughout the world.