Category Archives: Spanish in London

Total Eclipse of the Moon

bloodmoonTomorrow, during the veryveryvery early morning hours, I think around 1.10 AM GMT, a celestial event will take place, that, apparently, has not occurred since 1982 and won’t happen again until 2033. In our sky there’ll be a total lunar eclipse AND supermoon.

Coincidently, when googling total lunar eclipse I came across this fitting song, which is based on Bonnie Tyler’s Total Eclipse of the Sun (bring on the 80s!!!)

I think I might as well stick to the 80’s in order to stay awake to get that glimpse of this rare phenomenon when the moon is at its shortest distance from the Earth and as a result appears much larger and brighter than usual. Yes, why not, I shall be having one of my karaoke nights 🙂 and one song that will definitely feature tonight on my sing-along list is Hijo de la Luna by the Spanish 80’s pop group Mecano.

The song tells the beautiful and sad story of the moon (la luna = feminine), who wishes for a son. The song’s English translation is, as a whole, provided below.

Mecano hijo de la luna





Foolish is he who doesn’t understand
Tells a legend
That a female gypsy
Conjured up the moon until dawn
Crying she asked
At the break of dawn
To marry a gyspy man

“You’ll have your man, dark skin,”
Spoke the full moon from the sky
“But in exchange I want
The first son
That you’ll have with him
Because whoever sacrifices their son
To not be alone
Would likely not love him very much.”

Moon, you want to be a mother
And you can’t find a love
That can make you a woman
Tell me silver moon
What do you intend to do
With a child of flesh?
Son of the moon.

From a cinnamon skinned father a child was born
White like as the back of an ermine
With grey eyes
Instead of olive
An albino boy of the moon
“Damn his appearance!
This is a non-gypsy man’s child
And I won’t stand for it!”


The gypsy man, believing himself to be dishonoured
Went to his wife, a knife in hand
“Who’s this child?
You fooled me well!”
And then he mortally wounded her.
Then he went to the hill
With the child in his arms
And he abandoned him there.


And in the nights when there’s a full moon
It will probably be because the child is in a good mood
And if the child cries
The moon will wane
To make him a cradle
And if the child cries
The moon will wane
To make him a cradle

Taken from


Spanish karaoke night – ResistirĂ© (DĂșo DinĂĄmico)

So I watched a bit of the 29th Goya Awards ceremony last night. I thought that I would get a nice summary of which film to add to my ‘to watch’ list, because I hadn’t really followed Spanish Cinema last year. But my ingenious plan didn’t work out. As soon as the ceremony’s opening – a medley of songs performed by actors and singers – had finished with the song ‘ResistirĂ©’,  a song that I hadn’t heard for ages, the last time probably when I watched Pedro Almodovar’s 1990 dark romantic comedy ¥Átame!, my evening had turned into a spontaneous Spanish-songs-of-the-80s-and-90s-karaoke evening. Yes, I filled my lungs with air and sang along but only after I had looked for this and other song(s)/lyrics on the net silently thanking people who’d go through the time-consuming work transcribing and uploading them.

Anyway, that song was one of the first Spanish songs I’d ever listened to attentively and repetitively, some 12-or-so years ago. It was during a language class that we Spanish language learners who’d just (!) began to learn about one of the many uses of the subjunctive (ah you wonderful Spanish grammar) were asked to pick out all subjunctive words we could hear or think we were hearing. So, our language instructor would play us that song again and again and again.

Hope you enjoy it as much as I did then and yesterday! (The version below is not the original but one I particularly like; you can find the original version by following the link English translation below)

If you don’t know (much) Spanish and like to know what the song is all about, here’s a great website – Foreign Language Music. There you’ll find links to the song, an English translation , an extensive vocabulary list and grammar explanations.


M Vida Loca

Here’s a link to the interactive online drama Mi Vida Loca (British Academy Television Craft Awards, Winner 2009 Interactive Innovation), where my dear friend Esther had a part (episodes 7-12). Some of the scences were shot in Medina de Rioseco, with real Spanish students and real people.

Mi Vida Loca is great for Spanish beginners who like to complete a first course in 12 weeks, but I think it’s also great for “false” beginners, elemntary and lower intermediary levels. Actually, I know of Spanish native speakers, who love this programme and of Spanish language teachers (secondary and adult education), who use it in their class.

Hope you enjoy it, too.

Mi Vida Loca

8th London Spanish Film Festival

My Spanish is a bit rusty after having spent some weeks in Austria during the summer break, which was great  as I could communicate in my mother tongue 24/7. At the end of my stay I even thought my German had improved – I am of course referring to street German rather than to the German you find in course books.

Anyway, it is now high time to invest a bit of TLC to my slowly retreating Spanish skills and what better way, than by going to see a Spanish movie.

Check out the program of the 8th London Spanish Film Festival, which will take place at Cine Lumiere, South Kensington, from 28th September- 10th October 2012. Some screenings also take place at International House, Instituto Cervantes.

This is a unique opportunity to view recent Spanish films, most of them are in fact UK premiers and there is something for everyone: engaging thriller, comedies, dramas, action movies, documentaries and shorts. Also, many of the films will be presented by their director and actors!!

I am looking forward to the “Acting Almodovar” series (at Cine Lumiere), in particular to the on-stage conversation with Marisa Paredes and Antonia San Juan with Prof. Maria Delgado on Monday 1st October, 6.30 and the Q&A with Marisa Paredes after the screening of La Flor de mi Secreto on Tuesday, 2nd October, 8.30 pm