San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
De Sevilla a Jerez
JAVIER HEREDIA, from Sevilla
KINA MENDEZ, from Jerez
joined by dancers
Clara Rodríguez & Stephanie Narváez
Keni "El Lebrijano" & Alex Conde
JAVIER HEREDIA: A festero in the tradition of Miguel Funi, Anzonini and Paco Valdepeñas. Part dancer, part singer, part storyteller - all artist, integrated and inseparable - Javier performs with spontaneity and charisma, communicating with his art wherever he finds himself, whether it be on the street, in the kitchen, at a local bar or on stage. As a young man, Javier worked for a few years on the docks in Sevilla until elders of the Gypsy flamenco community discovered his "arte" and encouraged him to become a professional. He has since appeared several times in Seville's prestigious Flamenco Biennial in support of artist such as Jose Merce, Arcángel, Manuel Molina, Juana la del Pipa among others. He has toured all over Europe with the legendary dancer Manuela Carrasco and has appeared as a soloist in important flamenco events internationally such as the Mont de Marsan Flamenco Festival in the south of France. This will be Javier's 4th time in the Bay Area.
KINA MENDEZ was born into the Mendez clan of Gypsy artists of Jerez de la Frontera. Steeped in the flamenco tradition, she began singing under the influence of her aunt, legendary singer La Paquera de Jerez. Her professional career began when she joined Manuel Morao's company and led her to work with Mario Maya and tour internationally with Salvador Tavora's productions Carmen and Carmina Burana. Her explosive, expressive presence on stage and her dynamic vocal range has made her a sought after performer in both Spain and the U.S. Performing in festivals such as "La Fiesta de la Buleria" and "La Fiesta de la Vendimia" in Jerez de la Frontera, she has shared the stage with many renown flamenco artists including Manuel Agujetas, El Grilo and La Macanita. Her debut recording "De Sevilla a Jerez" was released in 2009 and she was a featured soloist with her own night at the prestigious XIV Festival de Jerez in 2010 in "Los Conciertos de Palacio". Since relocating to the US in 2010, Kina has been a featured guest artist with companies such as La Tania Baile Flamenco, Theatre Flamenco, Caminos Flamencos, Juan Siddi Flamenco Theatre Company and Zahara. She was a guest artist on Diego del Morao's 2011 concert at the 6th Annual Bay Area Flamenco Festival/Festival Flamenco Gitano and she appeared in Bay Area Flamenco's presentation of Concha Vargas and Juan del Gastor in 2012. Later that year she toured with Festival Flamenco Gitano USA, performing in San Francisco, Los Angeles and New York City as part of the 12-member cast of "Fiesta Jerez" featuring Juana la del Pipa and Diego del Morao.
Stephanie Narváez began dancing flamenco at the age of 7 and spent her formative years studying with Omayra Amaya while performing with several groups including Flamenco Vivo Carlota Santana. Since coming to the Bay Area several years ago, she has joined San Francisco's oldest flamenco dance company, Theatre Flamenco. She spent three summers in Santa Fe, New Mexico performing six nights a week at the Maria Benitez Theatre with the Juan Siddi Flamenco Theatre Company and toured with them nationwide for six weeks in the spring of 2012. She has also toured with the Latin/Reggae/Rumba Flamenca fusion band LoCura, playing percussion and dancing.
Clara Rodríguez began her dance training in her native Santa Barbara. She spent 3 years in Spain continuing her studies and while living in Granada she performed regularly at such venues as Tablao Albayzin, Venta el Gallo, Eshavira, and Zoraya de los Jardines alongside such noted artists as Rafalín Habichuela, Emilio Maya, Ana Calí and Juan Angel Tirado. Her teachers in Spain were Concha Vargas, Juana Amaya and Andrés Marín among others and she studied cante with legendary singer Inés Bacán of Lebrija. Returning to the US, she was a soloist in the Benise "Nights of Fire" PBS Special and 20-city US tour, and in 2011 was invited to perform in India along with the company at the Jaipur Palace. Clara currently lives in the Bay Area and she has performed with the leading flamenco companies here including Yaelisa’s Caminos Flamencos, La Tania Baile Flamenco, and Theatre Flamenco. She performs regularly at popular local venues such as Thirsty Bear, Peña Pachamama in San Francisco and hosts a monthly flamenco show at Disco Volante in Oakland. Last year Azahar Dance Foundation presented her solo show "Somos Tierra" at the Cowell Theater in San Francisco. A classically-trained pianist and instructor, she holds a B.A. from UCLA in Ethnomusicology.
From Valencia, Spain, Alex Conde is the son of Spanish singer Alejandro Conde. He began playing piano as a child. He was awarded a scholarship to the prestigious Berklee School of Music in Boston where he studied from 2007 to 2011 with professors such as Danilo Perez and Esperanz Spaulding. He currently lives in the Bay Area where he teaches music to high school students in Oakland and collaborates with Theatre Flamenco. He released his second solo recording this year, a wonderful flamenco-jazz project entitled "Barrio del Carmen". He has collaborated with many flamenco artists such as Nino de los Reyes, Chuscales, José Luis Rodríguez, Juan Siddi, Kina Méndez and Corral de los Reyes.
Keni "El Lebrijano" is one of the only professionally active guitarists in the US today who cultivates traditional pueblo-style flamenco. His deep and long lasting friendships with such legendary artists as la Fernanda de Utrera and el Farruco and his studies in the early 1970s with Diego del Gastor and Pedro Bacan among others, gave him an insider's understanding of the essence of toque gitano. Keni performed at the Bienal del Arte Flamenco de Sevilla in Spain in the early 90s and has performed with many great visiting artists here in the Bay Area.
When & Where
La Peña is a community cultural center with a national reputation and a global vision that promotes peace, social justice and cultural understanding through the arts, education and social action.
As a welcoming gathering place, La Peña provides opportunities for artists to share diverse cultural traditions, to create and perform their work, and to support and interface with diverse social movements.
Annually, La Peña presents over 200 events with emerging and established artists; organizes an arts education program; produces new works by local artists, presents internationally and nationally renowned artists, and houses a Latin American cafe which complements the organization's mission.