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Fuente de Carmen Amaya (Carmen Amaya Fountain)

Fuente de Carmen Amaya (Carmen Amaya Fountain) Review

Down at the eastern end of Carrer Sant Carles, where Barceloneta joins the beach, is the monument to the famous Gypsy flamenco dancer Carmen Amaya (1913–63), born in the Gypsy settlement known as Somorrostro, part of Barceloneta until 1920, when development sent the gypsies farther east to what is now the Fòrum grounds (from which they were again displaced in 2003). Amaya achieved universal fame at the age of 16, in 1929, when she performed at Barcelona's International Exposition. Amaya made triumphal tours of the Americas and starred in films such as La hija de Juan Simón (1934) and Los Tarantos (1962). The fountain, and its high-relief representations of cherubic children in the throes of flamenco, has been poorly maintained since it was placed here in 1959, but it remains an important reminder of Barceloneta's roots as a rough-and-tumble, romantic enclave of free-living sailors, stevedores, Gypsies, and fishermen. This Gypsy ambience all but disappeared when the last of the chiringuitos (ramshackle beach restaurants specializing in fish and rice dishes) fell to the wreckers' ball shortly after the 1992 Olympics.

Updated: 03-10-2014

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