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Celebrating 20 years - this is going to be a BIG ONE!!
June 7, 2018
Directed by Kari Alba
Saskatoon flamenco music and dance
is celebrating 20 years!
Each and every past, present and future dancer and their friends has been invited back
to attend the groups 20th anniversary performance called Camino de 20
It has been an exciting journey of over 100 dancers through the years stomping across wood floors, sweeping arms, expressive hands, and staying meticulously on the beat with taconeo (dancer’s footwork). While not being thrown off by what is happening in the cante (singing), toque (guitar playing), palmas (percussive clapping) and cajon (drum box) flamenco dancers have their work cut out for them.
David Matyas flamenco guitarist from Calgary
UTPALAPALO ensemble collaborating Odissi Indian Classical dance with Flamenco
Guest cajon player TBA
Kids' Flamenco group
Odissi Devotional Dancers
Sheena Oliphant Odissi dancer and artistic director
Las Chuchis local flamenco trio
36 Local flamenco dancers of all levels
Kari Alba bailaora, percussion and flamenco voice
After May 3
Adults $25, $30 at the door / Students $20, $25 door / Children $12, $15 door
Tickets will not be mailed or emailed. They will be waiting for you at the box-office for pick up before the event. Bring your confirmation email with you.
more about the company and this anniversary concert...
Born and raised in Saskatoon, artistic director Kari Alba’s original vision was never to start an organization dedicated to flamenco music and dance. She says she simply was seeking a way to discover the truth about this mysterious art form from Spain. Back then, there was not a lot going on in the city, so after her first study trip to Spain in 1993 she started with a handful of dancers in her basement.
From those humble beginnings, it blossomed –commencing with the first performance that brought International and Spanish artists to Saskatoon to collaborate with Alba and Alma Flamenca in 1998 at Castle Theatre, to solo and group performances at The Vancouver International Flamenco Festival in 2007, 2013 and in 2015 which featured legendary flamenco dancer Mercedes Amaya La Wyny. Today the organization boasts two professional companies, a dance school and workshop retreats in Spain.
The June anniversary concert consists of two new collaborative works that reveal some distant ancestor to flamenco in Indian dance: Utpalapalo brings together the devotional vibes of Odissi dance united with flamenco in a connection that displays the nourishing energy of yoga. Allah Hu, a piece by Sheena Oliphant and Kari Alba is based upon the invigorating music of Qawwali Flamenco. Sprinkled throughout the night, the 36 dancers of Alma Flamenca will stir emotions with dynamic musicians like flamenco guitarist David Matyas.
The closing ensemble which includes dancers like Colleen Kastning, -an alumni dancer and self-described flamenco-lifer of 20 years, Victoria Beaudin –started flamenco at 5 years young and still going steady against the mainstream dance way, Cynthia Merced – a silent energy that climbed her way to a deeper level over 16 years and two pregnancies, Patricia Serrano – an alumni dancer since 1995 who comes and goes throughout the years, and Rachel Heidecker – a devoted dancer of 14 years, will celebrate the alma (soul) of the journey that these performers have experienced over the years in Buleria por Fiesta -a popular flamenco form that celebrates the intuitive personalities of each performer by embracing the diversity in each individual.
"Different from a lot of dance these days, flamenco is not like something you would claim, 'Oh, why don’t we teach and perform it in Saskatoon,'" Alba states. "The art form at a deeper level just would have no meaning here."
Alba, who has been nominated for a Women of Distinction Award this year, is one of Saskatoon’s pioneer Flamenco Dance Artists. She has lived and trained in Spain cumulatively for over 4 years; attended the Teacher Specialization certification at La Fundacion Cristina Heeren Flamenco in Seville, Spain in 1998 and performed internationally and nationally with distinguished flamenco professionals such as Celedonio Garrido (Spain), Ricardo Diaz (SF USA/Spain), Mercedes Amaya (Mexico/Spain), Manuel Tañe (Spain), and Juan Martin (Spain).
Having spent her entire life discovering the secrets of flamenco, Alba endeavours to share her story and all its peaks and valleys on June 7th. She reflects on her latest group called Las Chuchis that started as a joke "I love the life elements of flamenco, it gives a realness to our nature…even the funny parts" she chuckles, "While sharing beers during rehearsal breaks with International artists, the name Chuchis (which is Andalusian for Churchill) replaced the name of our favourite pub Winston’s. The name has a secret meaning in Spanish too, so it felt like a good flamenco name to call our group because of the double meaning". Las Chuchis is a trio performing a Latin American Ida y Vuelta form, choreographed by Gema Sanchez La Milana of Spain.
The Alma Flamenca performers feel that the energy of this live music and dance performance called Camino de 20 (journey of 20) is beautiful. The name of their organization means flamenco soul which they all have – sharing spiritual movement and diverse personalities which are deeply embraced in the show.
Camino de 20 performers devote themselves to art. They are united in their journey and experiences which they share with a very powerful magic for audience members to enjoy.
This event has passed. Tickets are no longer available.