Diego 'El Cigala' at 6th Annual Bay Area Flamenco Festival

Diego 'El Cigala' at 6th Annual Bay Area Flamenco Festival

Latin Grammy awarded Spanish singer Diego El Cigala will headline 6th Annual Flamenco Festival in San Francisco Bay Area.

When I listen to him, it warms my heart.

— Paco De Lucia

a conjurer of impulsiveness and abandon.

The New York Times

Noted as a pioneer for his unique approach to Latin American music forms such as the bolero, tango and Afro-Caribbean jazz, Diego el Cigala has deep roots in the culture of Spanish Gypsy flamenco. As explained by Josh Kun in The New York Times, Cigala is able to "enter flamenco into conversations with other traditions without ever sacrificing its distinctive identity."

He won his first Latin Grammy for Bebo & Cigala: Lagrimas Negras, hailed by critic Ben Ratliff of The New York Times as Album of the Year and "one of the great new cross-pollinating documents of Latin music." And then he went on to win another for a more flamenco-oriented CD, Picasso en Mis Ojos, which featured guests such as the legendary Paco de Lucia and Latin jazz master Jerry Gonzalez.

Returning to the bolero, his 2008 project, Dos Lagrimas, united him with giants of Cuban percussion Tata Guines and Changuito and established his ongoing collaboration with the musicians who will be appearing with him at Zellerbach: guitarist Diego del Morao, pianist Jaime Calabuch Jumitus, percussionist Sabú Porrina and Cuban bassist Yelsy Heredia.

Just nominated for yet another Latin Grammy, his latest album, Cigala & Tango, marries "Spanish flamenco with the equally gritty and powerful South American tango" (The Observer, UK). "It works effortlessly," says Felix Contreras of NPR who describes it this way: "it's a cross-genre type thing. It's as if John Legend made a blue grass album and killed."

Cigala's appearance in Berkeley is part of his first major North American tour which will include stops in Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, Detroit, Vancouver, Toronto and New York City from October 20 through November 6, 2011.

The 6th Annual Bay Area Flamenco Festival will feature performances by visiting artists from Spain including guitarist Diego del Morao (on October 22nd at the Brava Theater in San Francisco), singer Diego El Cigala (on October 23rd at Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley), and dancer Jose Maya & Company (on October 29th at Crocker Theater Cabrillo College in Santa Cruz and on October 30th at Cowell Theater Fort Mason in San Francisco). Visiting artists will also offer workshops and master classes.

The Bay Area Flamenco Festival is presented by The Bay Area Flamenco Partnership, founded in 2004 by Artistic Director Nina Menéndez. The BAFP presents world-class artists from Spain and facilitates cultural exchange opportunities and workshops with visiting artists from Spain as well as providing a forum for the rich pool of outstanding local flamenco artists.

The 2011 Festival has been made possible in part by a grant from the Alliance for California Traditional Arts in partnership with the Walter and Elise Haase Fund, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the James Irvine Foundation. Community partners include Amoeba Records, KPFA, Univision, and La Peña Cultural Center.

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  • Music
  • San Francisco
  • Oct 23, 2011
  • 07:00 pm


Zellerbach Hall, UC Berkeley Campus, Bancroft Way, CA 94720-4800

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Bay Area Flamenco Festival