: the power to attract through personal magnetism and charm
Her performances were said to be spellbinding: by all accounts she was a singer possessed of such duende that the audience seemed a single organism unable to look away.
"[The flamenco performers] may achieve the rare quality of duende—total communication with their audience, and the mark of great flamenco of any style or generation." — The Rough Guide to Spain, 2015
Did You Know?
The word duende refers to a spirit in Spanish, Portuguese, and Filipino folklore and literally means "ghost" or "goblin" in Spanish. It is believed to derive from the phrase dueño de casa, which means "owner of a house." The term is traditionally used in flamenco music or other art forms to refer to the mystical or powerful force given off by a performer to draw in the audience. The Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca wrote in his essay "Teoria y Juego del Duende" ("Play and Theory of the Duende") that duende "is a power and not a behavior … a struggle and not a concept." Nowadays the term appears in a broader range of contexts to refer to one's unspoken charm or allure.
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