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Sevillanas (Spanish pronunciation: [seβiˈʝanas]) are a type of folk music and dance of Sevilla and its region. They were derived from the Seguidilla, an old Castilian folk music and dance genre. In the nineteenth century they were influenced by Flamenco. They have a relatively limited musical pattern but are rich in lyrics based on country life, virgins, country towns, neighborhoods, pilgrimage, and love themes. They are sung by a plethora of local groups, like the Los Romeros de la Puebla, Los Amigos de Gines, Las Corraleras de Lebrija, Cantores de Hispalis, and Los del Río. Every year, dozens of new sevillanas on CD are published.
Sevillanas can be heard mainly in fairs and festivals, including the famous Seville Fair, Feria de abril de Sevilla. There is an associated dance for the music: "Baile por sevillanas", consisting of four different parts. One can find schools teaching "baile por sevillanas" in nearly every town in Spain.
Sevillanas Rocieras are a religiously oriented genre of the Sevillana, with particular emphasis on the Virgin of the Rocío. They are sung in numerous religious and cultural events in the South of the country.
Sevillanas are danced by couples of all ages and sexes during celebrations (fiestas or ferias), often by whole families and towns. Sevillana choreography is very stable and knowing it is very useful, since it is a festival dance. This is why those intending to dance flamenco usually start by learning sevillanas; they are easier to master and there are more occasions for practice and training.
The rhythm of Sevillanas can be interpreted as 3/4, although it is generally 6/8. Each sevillana is composed of 4 or sometimes 7 parts, with each part divided into 3 coplas and with each copla made up of 6 movements. During festivals and shows, it is often the Sevillana dancing visitors to Andalusia mistakenly take as Flamenco, as it is a vivid style, full of turns.
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