Paco Peña in concert in Vienna, VA
Spanish guitarist Paco Peña bring to The Barns at Wolf Trap his embodiment of both authenticity and innovation in Flamenco music.
Named Best Flamenco Guitarist of the Year 5 years in a row by Guitar Magazine, Paco Peña has brought his Flamenco around the world from The Royal Albert Hall to New York’s Carnegie Hall. As guitarist, composer, dramatist, producer and artistic mentor, he has transformed perceptions of this archetypal Spanish art form.
Born in the Andalucian city of Córdoba, Peña began learning guitar from his brother at the age of six and made his first professional appearance at the age of 12. In the late 1960s he left Spain for London, where his recitals of flamenco music captured the public imagination. Peña is based in London, but still spends a significant part of the year in his native Andalucía. In 1997 he was proud to be named Oficial de la Cruz de la Orden Del Merito Civil, an honour bestowed by King Juan Carlos of Spain. He’s also earned a Kennedy Center Gold Medal in the Arts for his lifelong commitment to the mastery and innovation of the art of Flamenco.
Mr. Peña is a virtuoso, capable of dazzling an audience beyond the frets of mortal man. He combines rapid-fire flourishes with a colorist’s sense of shading; this listener cannot recall hearing any guitarist with a more assured mastery of his instrument. It should come as no surprise that readers of America’s Guitar Magazine judged Paco Peña Best Flamenco Guitarist of the Year for five consecutive years.—The New York Times