A great political emotion

La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
A great political emotion is a scenic proposal inspired by the Memory of melancholy, an autobiography by Maria Teresa León, that covers the crucial years of our recent history, the ones from the civil war and exile: these years, marked by a political enthusiasm, the revolution’s myth and the faith in the utopias.


Without historical pretension but with the intention to reveal the archetypal and universal from those events, we will try to embody the political emotion which pushes people to believe in their right to intervene in the history of their country, as if they would own the future. This emotion in the 20th-century disasters – wars, totalitarianism, and their consequences – has been unjustified.
La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
The dance and the physical action, the songs and breathing, the author’s original texts and the original musical proposal interpreted live, and inspired in European popular topics evokes María Teresa memories: episodes of her autobiography, like the Prado Museum preservation, the action in the entrenchment in Teatro de Guerrillas, political and social events like the women participation in the war and key concepts as collective body, the exile and the memory.



Through her memories, we are not pretending to dance Maria Teresa’s life, but her vision of the world, marked by an unstoppable empathy with the most underprivileged people full of contradictions, and the corrupted dream of seeing the success of a Republican and Communist Spain.



From the exile, Maria Teresa hoped to come back one day to her free country from the Franco dictatorship. When it finally happened, in 1977, the Alzheimer didn’t allow her to recognize her own homecoming. Spain and María Teresa suffered the same fate: the erased memory, the sickness of oblivion.


Luz Arcas and Abraham Gragera


Luz Arcas, Elena González-Aurioles, Begoña Quiñones, Raquel Sánchez, Paula Montoya, Ignacio Jiménez, Verónica Garzón, Itxasai Mediavilla, Patricia Roldán, José Andrés López, Sara burgazzi and José Luis Sendarrubias 


Luz Arcas


Abraham Gragera


Carlos González


Cristian Buades


David Santacecilia


Jorge Colomer


Virginia Rota


María Peinado


Paola de Diego


Xosé Saqués


María Teresa León


Centro Dramático Nacional and La Phármaco

La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
“Luz Arcas is a dancer whose only ally is her body, and what it can be used to create, construct and bark. Dance is another form of politics, but of an intimate kind, that which doesn’t exhaust itself in a simple force but draws on many: poetry, translation, thought…. Because everything moves.
This Southern woman’s project isn’t restricted to the ghetto of professional dance, but goes in and out all those places where some kind of commotion or deviation is to be found. Dance is necessary. Her dance is necessary. Because it calls out for complicity and a place without making any specific demands. Because it provides the light in places where illumination can sometimes be salvation.”
“I, of course, was moved as a spectator by the tremendous political emotion of Luz Arcas, Abraham Gragera and the Pharmakos Dance Company. I felt my fist, my memory, my body, our defeats, the unbreakable loyalty I owe to my elders and all those many things that the young teach me, my young friends: all those things which can be proud of being right.”
“With A Great Political Emotion, La Phármaco turns memory into a physical experience of high poetic standing”.
“This is not a political rant; it is a slice of the world that ceased to exist in 1936. It speaks of a dignified, egalitarian and fair world, defined as democracy opposed any form authoritarianism, which achieved sovereignty for an impoverished people. Until a coup and a Civil War reduced all of those hopes to a utopia.”
La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
La Phármaco Luz Arcas Compañía de Danza Contemporánea Una gran emoción política
“María Teresa León, embodied by Luz Arcas in a prodigious, overwhelming and tremendous initial solo: just when it seems that the performance abilities of this woman could not be any more sharpened or sensitive, even more surprising is the way in which what up until recently would have seemed impossible is rendered in natural registers”.
“A great emotion that brought the audience at the Cervantes to its feet”
“Arcas and Gragera have combined movement with the voice, breathing and music to the service of constructing a tremendously beautiful visual monument to honour and commemorate intellectuals from the Generation of 27. The production exudes passion, emotion, hope, expectation, melancholy and utopia in equal measure.”
“But when memory relating to reason and the heart deserts us –Evgueni Evtuchenko said thus in a beautiful poem– the memory of the body remains. And that, the third memory, is what Luz Arcas has to offer. First of all, embodying her in a beautiful solo full of energy in which a thousand María Teresas –the sensual young women, the revolutionary with her fist in the air, the women scared by bombs, she who had to go into exile–emerge from the body of the dancer burning up, as brilliant and full of nuances as the writer herself”.