Thursday Q&A: Flamenco star on Almodóvar and football

Brian Campbell puts artists on the spot about what really matters to them. This week: acclaimed Spanish flamenco singer Rocío Márquez

Rocío Márquez will be joined by Miguel Ángel Cortés and Los Mellis at her Bangor concert on August 28

1. When did you think about music as a career and what were your first steps into it?

I first stepped on to a stage aged nine at the flamenco peña club in Palos de la Frontera. Before I had always listened to flamenco at home. It was something that was always there, not really anything that could become a professional career. Everything changed when I won the Lámpara Minera (the most important prize in Spain for Flamenco music) in 2008. That was when I thought for the first time that flamenco could actually be my way of living, my professional career.

2. Best gig or gigs you've been to?

Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog and Einsturzende Neubauten in Primavera Sound 2015, Mauricio Sotelo's El Público (Flamenco-opera).

3. Fantasy wedding/birthday party band of choice?

Well, I am not planning to get married, and I do not celebrate my birthday. But for any special celebration I would rather not have music, I like the intimacy of silence.

4. The record you'd take to a desert island?

Nuevo Día by Lole y Manuel.

5. And the book?

El Vagabundo (The Wanderer) by Khalil Gibran, Book Of Longing by Leonard Cohen, El amor, las mujeres y la vida by Mario Benedetti or Frida Kahlo's Diary.

6. Top three films?

Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Pedro Almodóvar), Match Point (Woody Allen), Cándida (Guillermo Fesser).

7. Favourite authors?

Mario Benedetti, William Shakespeare, Santa Teresa de Jesús.

8. Sports you most enjoy and top teams?

I like running and swimming. I like my hometown football team Recreativo de Huelva, the oldest football club in Spain.

9. Ideal holiday destination?

The Greek Islands.

10. Pet hate?


11. What's your favourite:

Dinner? Japanese food.

Dessert? Any!

Drink? Tea, any kind. I love ginger.

12. Is there a God?

As many as human beings.

:: Rocío Márquez plays Bangor Abbey on Friday August 28, as part of the Open House Bangor festival. For tickets (£25), visit


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