The three Flamenco rhythms, “Ritmo Jondo,” were first performed in a concert of percussion music at the Museum of Modern Art, New York City, on May 5, 1952. The movements are drawn from Spanish gitano sources:
A gay, fast Flamenco dance, improvisatory in character, with shifting rhythms. The dancer punctuates the guitar and vocal accompaniment with heel-stamping and finger-snapping, while the onlookers interject rhythmic handclapping and shouts to spur the dancer on.
A slow ritual song of Seville, sung in the streets during the Good Friday procession. Instruments are prohibited during this season; however, muffled drums are often employed, adding to the mournful mood of lamentation.
A violent, temperamental dance of Flamenco origin, accompanied only by fragments of melody, sung by the dancer, and the staccato clapping rhythms of the surrounding observers. Their loud cries of “Olé!” incite the dancer to ever wilder displays of passion.