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LA LUNA NUEVA Festival of Hispanic Arts & Culture Held At Miracle Theatre 9/17-10/2

LA LUNA NUEVA - A festival of Hispanic arts and culture from around the world in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, Sponsored by PGE Foundation

WHEN: September 17 to October 2, 2010 (see list of individual events and artists below)
WHERE: Milagro Theatre, 525 SE Stark Street, Portland, Oregon 97214
ADMISSION: Admission varies; many events are FREE. All events are general seating; see details below.

Purchase tickets from 503-236-7253, or the PDX Ticket Network box office
at the Hollywood Theatre on NE Sandy Blvd. daily 1-9 p.m.
MORE INFORMATION: 503-236-7253 or

A festival of Hispanic arts and culture from around the world - 22 performances over 16 days - in celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month

Beginning September 17, Miracle Theatre Group is pleased to present "La Luna Nueva", a festival of Hispanic arts and culture from around the world celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. Like the new moon emerging from The Shadows, "La Luna Nueva" shines its light on new artists and new work across a variety of disciplines. Join us for spirited flamenco, passionate tango, Cuban jazz and intimate boleros, bilingual poetry and songs from local authors and musicians, storytelling for families, open mic nights and staged readings of four new plays, including this season's world premiere of Boomcracklefly.


• Tango éxtasis
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Friday, Sept. 17, 2010 • $25
Uncover the exquisite passion and the burning intensity of tango for one night only. Let the music and the dance embrace your body and capture your heart with this unique performance showcasing moves you won't see at milongas. Artists from Portland and Seattle include Sean Battles, Angela Bevill-Kohler, Dominic Bridge, Mauricio Carvajal, Jaimes Friedgen, Alex Krebs, Christa Rodriguez, Jenna Rohrbacher, Pols Sungjong Oh and Remanda Xiang. [See artist bios below] NEW PHOTOS AVAILABLE

• Aliolé: Flamenco agridulce
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Saturday, Sept. 18, 2010 • $25
"Agridulce" is the newest work from flamenco troupe Aliolé expressing life's bittersweet moments through singing, guitar, percussion and dance by artists living in Portland, Oregon (Mark Ferguson, guitarist; Lillie Last, dancer; Laura Onizuka, dancer; Toshi Onizuka, percussionist and guitarist) and Sevilla, Spain (Melinda Hedgecorth, dancer) with special guest singer Stephanie Pedraza from Vancouver, B.C. [See artist bios below.] NEW PHOTOS AVAILABLE

• Fusion Flamenco: Travesuras ("Pranks")
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Saturday, Oct. 2, 2010 • $25
Flamenco guitarist Ricardo Diaz - who recently recorded his debut album in Spain's Jerez de la Frontera, the cradle of flamenco music - taps the passionate and intense gypsy energy that will leave audiences with stories to remember. At Milagro, Diaz will be joined by international musicians Cristo Cortes, Vicente Griego and Antonio Arrebola. [See artist bios below.]


• Una noche con Edna Vazquez
One performance: 7:30 p.m. • Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010 • $15 • Bilingual
Portland's rising star Edna Vazquez, a singer/songwriter/guitarist originally from Colima, Mexico, brings her dusky voice to this intimate concert filled with both original music and familiar songs. Guest artists include acoustic guitarist Juan Carlos Serbulo from Oaxaca, among others. [See artist bios below.]

• Correo Aereo: A Sultry Night in Latin America
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Friday, Sept. 24, 2010 • $15 • Bilingual
Correo Aereo ("air mail") are Austin Music Award-winners now based in Seattle. The Latin American/world music trio performs traditional and original music from Venezuela, Argentina, Mexico and beyond, combining a stunning array of string and percussive instruments with silken vocal harmonies described as "locked in carnal embrace" by the Austin Chronicle. Hailed for exciting musical virtuosity and profoundly moving performances through unknown landscapes of Latin America, their sensual music is both viscerally ancient and vibrantly contemporary. Abel Rocha plays Venezuelan and Mexican harp, guitar, cuatro, quinta huapanguera and vocals. Madeleine Sosin offers violins, maracas, bombo, jarana, quijada and vocals. They are joined by Amy Denio, (Kulture Shock & The Tiptons), on accordion, clarinet and vocals. Their music is richly polyrhythmic and soulfully melodic - soaring, fiery, haunting and joyful ... this is the universal language. [See artist bios below.]

• Jessie Marquez: La noche de boleros (Night of Boleros)
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010 • $20 • Bilingual
Jessie Marquez, an emerging Northwest Latina artist that Latino Beat Magazine calls "a musical gem," brings to the Milagro a night filled with boleros, those intimate and poetic Cuban love songs. Pianist Clay Giberson accompanies. [See artist bios below.]

• Jessie Marquez: La Habana jazz (Havana Jazz)
Two performances: 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. • Friday Oct. 1, 2010 • $20 • Bilingual
"Jessie Marquez has become la reina of Cuban music in the Pacific Northwest," writes Latina Style magazine, and she returns to Milagro with an evening of cool and soulful sounds of Cuban jazz. Guest artists include Upper Left Trio and Idit Shner. [See artist bios below.]


• Nuestro Canto: Leyendas de México (Legends of Mexico)
2 p.m. • Sunday, Sept. 26, 2010 (also Sunday, Sept. 19, 2010) • $7 ages 5-12; $12 ages 13+ • Bilingual
Mexico is well known for its legends, myths and tales from the Aztecs, Mayans, Toltecs and Huicholes - legends of love, nature and everyday life. In this family-friendly bilingual performance, Nuestro Canto (Gerardo Calderón and Nelda Reyes) fills the evening with the magic of masks, movement and imaginative storytelling. [See artist bios below.] NEW PHOTOS AVAILABLE

• Noche de los poetas (Poets Open Mic Night)
7 p.m. • Tuesday, Sept. 28, 2010 (also Tuesday, Sept. 21, 2010) • Free • Bilingual
Enjoy readings of work by Latino poets - from both the canons of literary giants such as Pablo Neruda and Federico García Lorca as well as original work by local authors. Audiences are invited to also bring their own Latino poetry to share in English or Spanish.

• Dreaming the Americas: Encounters/Encuentros
One performance: 7:30 p.m. • Thursday, Sept. 30, 2010 • $10 • Bilingual
From Latin America to the Texas border to the Northwest, "Encounters/Encuentros" dreams the Americas anew. Poet-dramatist Cindy Williams Gutiérrez is joined by guitarist/Aztec instrumentalist Gerardo Calderón, and writer/storyteller Lynn Darroch teams up with Latin Grammy-nominated guitarist Alfredo Muro to present poetry and stories in a lively interplay with music. Gutiérrez's poems reveal the indigenous tapestry of the Americas - from Olmec to Chinook - accompanied by Calderón on water drums, clay flutes, and wind whistles, and by Native American drumming. From Panamá to Beaverton, Darroch's musical portraits of activists, musicians, and brujos ride the boleros, rumbas, and danzones from Muro's guitar. Also joining the evening's presentation are cellist Kendra Carptenter and didgeridoo player Coral Barry. [See artist bios below.] NEW PHOTOS AVAILABLE


• Boomcracklefly written by Charise Castro Smith
One staged reading • 7 p.m. • Monday, Sept. 20, 2010 • Free • Presented in English
When you spend your life dreaming, what happens when you finally get what you want? In a New York barrio, a female impersonator ignores the advice of his imaginary grandmother to fall in love with an insatiable scientist; in a Key West circus, two acrobat sisters are divided over the ghost of Ernest Hemingway; and in revolutionary Havana, a man who wishes he had wings yearns to fly away to another land. Three seemingly disparate stories weave together in a clever combination of science fiction and magical realism to create an eccentric environment that is as unsettling as it is irresistible. This staged reading is part of the development process for this new play that will have its world premiere at Miracle in March 2011. [See playwright's bio below.]

• Our Lady of the Underpass written by Tanya Saracho
One staged reading: 7 p.m. • Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2010 • Free • Presented in English
The same week Rome announced a new Pope, a woman driving home from work spotted an image of the Virgin Mary on a discolored wall on the Fullerton Avenue underpass. In this comedy, award-winning playwright Tanya Saracho renders the voices of those who were drawn to that wall, exploring issues of faith and desire in present day Chicago. [See playwright's bio below.]

• Don Juan Tenorio written by José Zorrilla
One staged reading: 7 p.m. • Monday, Sept. 27, 2010 • Free • Presented in Spanish (no subtitles)
The legendary Don Juan, that selfish rogue who took great pleasure in defying the opponents of his romantic interests, is revisited in this classic version by José Zorrilla. Presented in its original Spanish, Don Juan Tenorio offers a chance to experience the legendary play that inspires this year's Day of the Dead celebration at Miracle. [See playwright's bio below.]

• Tío Pepe written by Matthew Lopez
One staged reading: 7 p.m. • Wednesday, Sept. 29, 2010 • Free • Presented in English
The Candelarias are a family of singer/dancer/actors who dream of a life as Broadway gypsies. They live on West 66th Street in Manhattan which would be an ideal location were it not for the fact that the year is 1958 and the city of New York plans to tear down their building to make way for Lincoln Center. As their neighborhood disappears around them and eviction is imminent, they retreat more and more into the dream life that only Broadway musicals provide. [See playwright's bio below.]

ABOUT THE GUEST ARTISTS (in alphabetical order)

Antonio Arrebola began dancing at age eight and received instruction in ballet and classical Spanish dance at the Conservatory of Málaga. At the same time, he studied flamenco seriously with Susana Lupianez and Pepe Ruiz. In 2001 the Fundación Cristina Heeren de Arte de Flamenco in Seville offered him a full scholarship to continue his studies with flamenco greats such as Manolo Soler, Javier Barón and Hiniesta Cortés. A year later, Mario Maya selected him as a student at the Centro Escénico in Granada, where Antonio Arrebola studies with Alejandro Granados, Rafaela Carrasco, Belen Maya, Juan Andres Maya and Mario Maya himself. After successfully completing a year of studies in Granada, Antonio Arrebola was called back to the Fundación Cristina Heeren de Arte de Flamenco to teach as a substitute teacher for Rafael Campallo. Back in Seville, he deepened his studies with Pilar Ortega, Andres Peña and others. Since the age of 15 Antonio Arrebola has been performing in many tablaos of Andalucia, like El Ricon del Tiriri and El Tano in Málaga, La Cueva, La Rocio, Los Tarantos and Palacio Andaluz in Granada, El Arenal, Casa de la Memoria and Casa Carmen in Seville. Antonio Arrebola has delighted audiences in the Netherlands, Germany, Poland, Italy, Marroco, Canada, and Japan. Most prominently, he worked with Yoko Komatzubara, Ursula López and Rafael Cortés, with whom he opened up for Paco de Lucía at the Leverkusener Jazztage Festival in November 2006. In Spain he danced at many festivals like the Festival de Castiblanco de los Arroyos (with Rosario Toledo and Chano Lobato) and the Festival Flamenco de la Alameda de Hercules. In 2007 he appeared at the Festivals Los Veranos del Corral in Granada and the Festival de Jerez, also with Mercedes Ruiz, Manuel Liñan and Belen Lopez at the Bienal de Mlaga.

Sean Battles is a Portland-based multi-instrumentalist/songwriter. He has studied classical guitar with David Franzen and Bryan Johanson, and classical voice with Carl Halvorson. He performs regularly with his band, as well as solo, and as a member of Dos Sirenes.

Angela Bevill-Kohler is a native Oregonian and a dancer since the age of two. Prior experience includes dancing in Performing Company at Westside Dance Academy and at the Oregon Ballet Theater before she attended Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington.

Dominic Bridge has taught and performed up and down the west and east coasts of the U.S., Chicago Tango Week '09, Italy, and Buenos Aires, where he has spent months engaged in extensive training. Dominic spent last year building a tango school and teaching full time in Florence, Italy at l'Associazione Pablo Scuola di Tango Argentino.

Gerardo Calderón (originally from Mexico) is an award-winning composer and the musical director of Grupo Condor - Latin American Folk Music and Nuestro Canto. He is also a sound designer for ballet and theatre companies, and has toured throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe with folk ensembles, world music ensembles and choirs, playing a variety of Latin stringed instruments and pre-Hispanic percussion and flute. He studied classical guitar at the Escuela Superior de Música in Mexico City and theory and composition at Portland Community College. His latest CDs are "Viajero/Traveler" (solo) and "Emerald Heart" (collaboration with poet Cindy Williams Gutiérrez).

Mauricio Carvajal was born in Colombia and exposed to Argentine tango from an early age. He has danced for as long as he can remember (including competitively as a ballroom dancer) and has taught Afro-Antillean rhythms for several years. He retired from teaching and now spends his time as a television director as well as lurking at milongas, apprenticing as a tango dancer.

Correo Aereo (Air Mail) is an award winning multi-instrumental and vocal Latin American/World Music Duo. Abel Rocha and Madeleine Sosin combine a stunning array of string and percussive instruments with silken vocal harmonies described as ‘locked in carnal embrace' by the Austin Chronicle. Correo Aereo performs traditional music of Latin America: especially of Venezuela, Argentina & Mexico, and original music rooted deep in these lineages & their Indigenous roots and African, N. African & Sephardic diasporas. Their deep and sensual honoring of tradition while embracing organic innovation results in music that is both viscerally ancient and vibrantly contemporary. Dirty Linen Magazine proclaimed them ‘one of the most exciting acoustic ensembles to appear in many years'. Abel sings & plays harp, guitar, cuatro and quinta huapanguera. Madeleine sings & plays violins, maracas, bombo and jarana. They are joined by Amy Denio, (Kulture Shock & The Tiptons), on accordion, clarinet and voice. Her 4-octave voice is ‘a thing of wonder' according to the Seattle Times. Correo Aereo has recorded 3 CDs and appears on many audio compilations and collaborations. They are featured in film & television, including Universal Pictures ‘The Life Of David Gale', FaronWestProduction's star studded music documentary ‘Before the Music Dies' and composed & performed the soundtrack for ‘Shipibo Konibo' by Dutch filmmaker, Willem Malten. Correo Aereo has performed at festivals, theaters and music venues throughout the U.S. and abroad, including Winnipeg Folk Festival, Austin Music Hall, EMP Seattle, Holland's prestigious Moondive; an international media project/concert produced by VPRO Television-Radio Amsterdam, Seattle International Children's Festival and the Knitting Factory, NYC. Their music has been featured on NPR Radio programs; Latino USA, All Things Considered and on Amy Goodman's Democracy Now. Correo Aereo was selected winner of the prestigious Austin Music Award for ‘Best Traditional Mexican/Latino Act 2000-2001 and their many artistic adventures and collaborations include their original bi-lingual multi-media ensemble production, ‘Para Cantarle al Rio/To Sing A River", ‘Warped Like Space & Time' with LelaVision and ‘Songs across Walls of Separation', an international collaborative CD project produced by KKV Norway.

Cristo Cortés was born in Marseilles in 1971. He comes from a family of singers from the region of Almeria (Andalusia). At the age of six, he distinguished himself in weddings and family Juergas, and then quickly on stage with his brothers. In 1996, he started with the great singer Carmen Linares, a tour in France and Spain where Antonio el Pipa involved and guitarists Juan Carlos Romero and Jose Maria Bandera, nephew of Paco de Lucia. In Paris, Salle Pleyel, he sang in an adaptation of the short life of Manuel De Falla with the National Orchestra of Ile de France under the direction of Jacques Mercier. During 1998, he was invited to sing at the coffee tablao Chinitas Madrid then he accompanied dancers from Seville tablao Los Gallos. He participated in the Biennale de Lyon flamenco and Seville. He lived for a period of five months in Tokyo with dancer Juan Andrés Maya. In 1999 he toured the U.S. and Mexico with a dancer Andres Marin and January 2001, attended the opening of the festival with the participation of Nimes Tomatito, Niño de Pura, Manolo Franco and Marina Heredia. From September to November 2001 he toured the U.S. and Canada with the dancer Alejandro Granado Seville. In 2002, he performed in various formations in the U.S., Switzerland, Germany, Greece, and in Guadeloupe. In 2003, he sang the first part of the Paquera Jerez. In 2004, he toured France with the show Romancero gitano by Federico García Lorca under the artistic direction of Vicente Pradal, celebrated by critics in Le Monde and Le Figaro. In May, it happens again in Guadeloupe with the young dancer from Córdoba, Manuel Gutierrez Cabello.

Lynn Darroch is a music journalist, radio host and performer who has lived and taught in Spanish-speaking countries and edited the anthology, Between Fire and Love - Contemporary Peruvian Writing. His musical stories about jazz figures appear on his latest CD, "Local Heroes/American Originals," and he hosts a weekly jazz show on KMHD. He has contributed articles on music to the Oregonian, The Encyclopedia of United States Popular Culture and to the Oregon Encyclopedia. He taught literature and writing at Mt. Hood Community College for 18 years and currently edits the monthly magazine, Jazzscene.

Amy Denio is a composer, singer, multi-instrumentalist, audio engineer, international collaborator, record producer, and founder of her own record label and publishing company, Spoot Music. Her main instruments are voice, accordion, alto saxophone, clarinet, electric guitar, and bass. Since 1996, she has recorded 43 CDs and performed at international festivals solo and in collaboration with diverse musicians and artists from East and West Europe, Brazil, Mexico, Taiwan, Japan, India, Russia, and throughout North America. She's a founding member of Tone Dogs and Billy Tipton Memorial Saxophone Quartet. She has toured and recorded with Bosnian group Kultur Shock since 1999.Denio's music was included in the John Cage Retrospective at the 1993 Biennale di Venezia. She composed the soundtrack for "Pangaea's Brood" by Thomas Edward, which won Best Animated Film at the 1997 New York Underground Film Festival; and for Jamie Hook's feature film, "The Naked Proof," which premiered at the Seattle International Film Festival and was named Best Undistributed Film, in the Village Voice 2003 Annual Critics' Poll. Her soundtrack for David Dorfman Dance's "Sky Down" received the 1987 NY Bessie Award for Music. Other commissions include music for Italian National Radio, the Berkeley Symphony, The New York Festival of Song, Relache Ensemble, the Austrian chamber octet Die Knodel, choreographers Pat Graney, Victoria Marks, Aiko Kinoshita, Li Chiao-Ping, and puppeteers Dan Hurlina and Dan Froot.

Ricardo Diaz discovered the art of flamenco in San Francisco, where he began his studies with guitarist Jorge Liceaga. At the advice of his teacher and mentor Liceaga, Ricardo started traveling to Madrid, where he studied with "El Entri" and "El Viejin". Ricardo would soon begin working in the San Francisco Bay Area "Tablaos" accompanying many Bay Area Flamenco artists. Soon after, Ricardo would start traveling the U.S. and Europe working with Gypsy singer Cristo Cortes and Flamenco Sur, performing in cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Diego, Portland, London, Amsterdam, Geneva and Paris. Ricardo continued touring in China with a San Francisco group led by guitarist Roberto Aguilar. Later he would appear on Shaw TV, CBC Canada, Fox TV, NBC and TF1 in France also interviewed in Argentina with Flamenco magazine "Contratiempo" and web magazines such as SF Flamenco and Luna del Olivar as well as the SF Chronicle. Ricardo has continued working in different Peñas in Seville and several Festivals around the world in Seville, Vancouver, Albuquerque, Avignon, Grenoble and Mont de Marsan. Ricardo has perform with world renown Flamenco artist such as La Tania, Alejandro Granados, Jesus Montoya, Jose Anillo, Juan Requena, Pastora Galvan, Canito, Alegria Suarez, David Lagos and Andres Marin.

Mark Ferguson was born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania. He began studying the flamenco guitar in 1995. He has spent two years in Spain learning how to accompany flamenco song and dance. Mark spent one year as resident flamenco guitarist at the University of New Mexico and has toured with the Second Company of María Benítez. Mark has entertained audiences throughout the U.S., Mexico and South Korea. Mark has studied with many maestros, among them being: Pascual de Lorca, Flecha, David Serva, Chuscales, Juan Maya "Marote", Jason McGuire, Jesús Álvarez, Niño Jero, Antonio Jero and others. Mark currently teaches Spanish at Pacific University of Oregon.

Jaimes Friedgen has been a full-time tango teacher for most of his adult life. Before that, he traveled from town to town with a suitcase and his guitar, sleeping on rooftops and singing songs for bus fare. A dancer of extraordinary accomplishment, Jaimes is hailed for his beautiful movement and musicality. His teaching career began early in his life, giving classrooms composed of various stuffed animals and plastic toys lessons in reading, writing, and basic arithmetic. He has since passed this responsibility on to his daughter, Ravenna, who was born in the fall of 2006.

Clay Giberson is a well-traveled (geographically and musically) keyboardist/composer. A Southwest Washington native, he studied in Coral Gables, Florida, University of Miami (B.M. Cum Laude, Studio Music and Jazz) and New York City, New York University (M.M. magna cum laude, Music Technology) where he studied with Jim McNeely and Fred Hersch. Clay has released four recordings on the Seattle based Origin Records. His latest recording "Spaceton's Approach," a piano trio project, received national airplay and favorable reviews. He has performed throughout Europe, Scandinavia, the Mediterranean, the South Pacific and Caribbean and Japan. Clay also served as musical director for shows in Atlantic City and has performed at such well known New York jazz clubs as Birdland and the Knitting Factory. Having been influenced by all types of music, Clay draws from these idioms in his own compositions and in the interpretation of others. Currently he is a member of the Portland-based groups, Upper Left Trio and Go By Train. He is on faculty at Clackamas and Mt. Hood Community Colleges where he teaches electronic music and piano.

Vicente Griego - "El Cartucho" from Dixon/Embudo, New Mexico - has devoted his life to the study of the art of flamenco singing. In 1992, Vicente began touring the U.S., Canada and Latin America, with the José Greco II Flamenco Dance Company, where he was mentored by Caño Roto singer, Alfonso "Veneno" of Madrid, Spain. Vicente remains a pupil of acclaimed guitarist, Chuscales and continues to accompany internationally renowned companies such as; Yjastros, Juan Siddi Flamenco Company, Carola Zertuche's Teatro Flamenco, Martinez' Pueblo Viejo, Fanny Ara, Jesus Montoya y Pureza Flamenca and Encuentro, to name a few. Vicente Griego "El Cartucho" is striking for his deep, sonorous wails that seem to come from a cavern, someplace deep within his soul... Anna Poplawska, Chicago Artist's News.

Cindy Williams Gutiérrez collaborates with artists in music, theatre, and visual art. Her CD, "Emerald Heart," features her Aztec-inspired poetry with pre-Columbian instrumentalist Gerardo Calderón. Publications include Borderlands, Calyx, Harvard's Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion, Portland Review, Quiddity, Rain Taxi, Rattle, ZYZZYVA, among others. Productions include the Miracle's El Grincho's El Dorado Escapade and Familia, Food & Fiesta. Cindy earned an MFA from the University of Southern Maine Stonecoast Program with concentrations in ancient Mexican poetics and creative collaboration. She has taught through the Attic, Annie Bloom's Book, Wordstock, and Writers in the Schools.

Melinda Hedgecorth graduated in 1997 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance (ballet, modern, and flamenco) from the University of Missouri, Kansas City. She then began performing professionally with flamenco and modern dance troupes from all over the U.S., most notably Olé Music and Dance of Spain directed by Tamara Carson in Kansas City and Carmona Flamenco from Seattle. In 1999 Melinda began yearly trips to Madrid and Jerez to cultivate a more profound understanding of flamenco at the source. There she studied with talented teachers such as Mercedes Ruíz, Belén Fernández, and La Truco among many others. In 2004 she moved to Sevilla, Spain and began to perform in the local flamenco tablaos, as well as the Centro Andaluz de Arte Contemporáneo, and individual projects with highly respected artists from other venues. While living in Sevilla Melinda maintains two groups in the U.S., Flamenco Mío in Kansas City with guitarist Beau Bledsoe and Aliolé in Portland, Oregon with dancer Laura Onizuka and singer Diana Bright. Each year she travels to give workshops, teach at universities, and perform internationally.

Alex Krebs has taught and performed tango extensively in the U.S. and Europe over the past decade. He has recorded three tango albums and owns the all-Argentine Tango studio in SE Portland, "Tango Berretin" ( Aside from being a tango-addict, Alex is also raising two boys, Tuvan throat-singing, and directing a 15-piece gypsy-brass band.

Lillie Last's interest in flamenco was sparked by a poster publicizing a fiesta. After a decade of study, she continues to develop her skills as a dancer in an art form that is complex musically and culturally. Lillie's strength is improvisation, allowing her to connect with the singers and musicians honestly and sincerely. She travels to Spain regularly to gain inspiration from artists such as: Pastora Galvan, Manuel Linan, Adela Campallo, Chiqui de Jerez, Ricardo Lopez, Maria Bermudez and Felipe Mato.

Matthew Lopez's most recent play, The Whipping Man, received its West Coast Premiere at The Old Globe in San Diego in May, 2010 followed shortly by its New England Premiere at Barrington Stage Company in Pittsfield, Massachusetts. The play premiered at Luna Stage in Montclair, New Jersey and was subsequently produced at Penumbra Theatre Company in St. Paul, Minnesota under the direction of founder and artistic director, Lou Bellamy. Matthew's work has been developed and heard at Manhattan Theatre Club, the McCarter Theatre, The New Group, Ars Nova and The Lark Play Development Center. Other plays include Reverberation and Zoey's Perfect Wedding. He is a current member of the Ars Nova Writers' Group and an artist-in-residence at the Old Globe Theatre.

Jessie Marquez, whose father grew up in Havana, was raised on her grandmother's Cuban cooking and on family stories about life on the island. She first visited Cuba in 1996. "Right away, there was something very familiar about it - the way people spoke, their gestures, their attitudes. I felt at home." In 2003, members of the Afro-Cuban Allstars heard her sing in Havana and offered to produce her first CD. "Sana Locura," recorded in a haphazard home studio between power outages, reached the top of the salsa and Latin jazz charts in Europe and the U.S. In 2005 and 2006, the Cuban Department of Culture sponsored her to sing in the country's International Bolero Festival. She performed in theaters and clubs throughout the island with Cuban greats Omara Portuondo, Ela Calvo and many others. Marquez was recently awarded a grant by the Oregon Arts Commission to promote her original music.

Alfred Muro is an acclaimed master of Brazilian and other Latin styles, a Peruvian-born guitarist who has performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and in many international guitar festivals, including the Entre Cuerdas International Guitar Festival in Chile and similar festivals in Peru and Argentina. His latest CD, "Latin Impressions," was nominated for a Latin Grammy in 2009. His previous CDs include "Alma Brasiliera" Vols I and II. He and Darroch collaborated on the 2007 CD, "Beyond the Border - Stories of the Latin World." He now lives in Boulder, CO.

Laura Onizuka has trained in Sevilla, Madrid, and Jerez, Spain with artists such as: La Truco, Miguel Cañas, Matilde Coral, Manuel Liñan, Marcos Flores, Inmaculada Ortega, Angeles Gabaldón, Ricardo López, María López, Felipe Mato, and María Bermúdez. She is known for her strong technical skills, attention to detail, and passion as both a performer and instructor. Laura has performed with renown flamenco artist, Ricardo López. She also performs
throughout the Portland area with artists such as Tarik and Julia Banzi of Al-Andalus, Ricardo Diaz, Vicente Griego, Toshi Onizuka, Greg Wolfe, Danny Romero, Reinhardt Melz, and Diana Bright. She holds a Master of Arts in Education and is skilled in teaching both adults and children.

Toshi Onizuka was born in Tokyo, Japan. At twenty years old, he began playing guitar. Inspired by the music of Al DiMeola, Paco De Lucia, and Django Reinhardt, Toshi sought to develop his own sound. Toshi realized that in order to achieve this, he would need to teach himself. He quickly became consumed with the guitar and devoted himself completely to developing his technique. In 1993 he moved to Seville, Spain where he lived for five years. Based in Seville, Toshi immersed himself in the Spanish music scene, playing with as many musicians as he could, traveling to different parts of the country as well as Morocco. Two of those years Toshi spent performing and touring with the internationally acclaimed Flamenco fusion group Pata Negra. While in Spain, Toshi developed a fascination with rhythm which can be heard in his playing today. In 1997 he released his first solo CD, Toshi, an effort that featured musicians from Spain and Brazil and included all original songs written and produced by Toshi. Toshi has appeared on the recordings of various artists including the internationally acclaimed singer Gino Vanelli. He has collaborated with a variety of local artists including Lawson Fusao Inada, Oregon's 2006-2008 Poet Laureate, Portland Taiko, Bobby Torres, and AaRon Meyer. In January 2008 he was featured on OPB's Oregon ArtBeat and has been featured on KMHD's Home Grown Jazz and Home Grown Live and has taken the stage at numerous northwest events such as the Cathedral Park Jazz Festival, Art in the Pearl, the Dragon Moon Festival, and the Sandy Summer Concert Series. Toshi released his second solo CD, Voy Con Fusión in September 2008, a creation which he describes as a musical stew consisting of flamenco, jazz, rock, and hip hop. Toshi has become known for his keen improvisational skills and his distinctive sound that uniquely combines flat picking with dynamic percussive sounds made on the surface of his guitar. Critics have said that Toshi makes it seem as if "two guitars were playing," Pamela Ellgen, The Asian Reporter; that his "fingers move like a butterfly fluttering its wings as he shows how he plays his flamenco-flavored jazz-fusion music," Rob Cullivan of the Gresham Outlook; and that "Onizuka has found it in his way-talented heart to bless Portland with his classy, delicate playing," Max T. Malt of the Willamette Week. Toshi's music isn't easily categorized and can't be limited to a specific genre; he prefers to think of it as a truly international sound that knows no borders and has no boundaries. Toshi currently resides in Portland, Oregon where he performs with local talent such as Israel Annoh, Damian Erskine, Mariano Deorbegoso, Jon Hughes, Phil Baker, Reinhardt Melz among others, at various local venues.

Stephanie Pedraza brings to the stage over 17 years of artistic experience. She is a unique combination of singer, song writer and flamenco dancer. Having grown up in Latin America, she stays true to her roots and culture and is influenced by a wide variety of musical genres such as latin and pop. It was at 19 that she fell in love with flamenco, and ever since, has dedicated her life to mastering the art. In 2003 she moved to Andalucia, Spain, where she trained intensively both in singing and dancing with some of the most prominent figures in flamenco such as: Milagros Menjibar, Rafael Campallo, Carmen Ledesma, Andres Peña, Sonia Miranda, Javi Navarro and David Hornillo to name a few. Over the past decade, she has performed nationally and internationally in countries such as Spain, Mexico, Colombia and the U.S., touring and collaborating in several musical projects. Among her many appearances on stage, some include: Concurso Nacional de Flamenco 2010, organized by The National Institute of Flamenco in Albuquerque NM, Vancouver International Flamenco Festival 2009, Vancouver International Film Festival 2008 closing gala ceremony, The Portugese Heritage Month concert series 2008 in Vancouver, BC, Al Mozaico Flamenco Dance Theatre productions Poemas de Alegria and Feria de la Costa under the direction of Vancouver´s acclaimed Oscar Nieto and several performances with Flamenco Rosario, under the direction of Rosario Ancer, founder of Vancouver´s Centro Flamenco. She currently lives in Vancouver, B.C., where she is well-known among the flamenco community of students and aficionados for teaching ongoing classes and workshops in both singing and dancing.

Pols [Sungjong Oh] has danced for eight years in Korea and one year in the U,S. The reason he dances tango is to feel nothing but his partner and the music; these two elements absorb him in the dance. He has taught several lessons at Café el Tango in Seoul, South Korea. Recently, he obtained a flight instructor certificate and is hoping to teach in the States.

Nelda Reyes, originally from Mexico, is co-founder of Nuestro Canto, She has been a professional actress for over 10 years and has specialized in physical theatre and in Latin American and Mexican cultural expressions. She holds a MA degree in Theatre Arts from Portland State University and also has studied in the Moscow Art Theatre School at Harvard University, with Luis de Tavira, and with Teatro Línea de Sombra in Mexico City. In addition to from her acting experience and education, she has studied language, literature, and classical and folk dance from different
cultures, specifically those of Spain and the Caribbean. She has been a performer in ongoing projects at the Company of Theatre of the University of Guadalajara, assisted in the direction of diverse theatrical and opera productions in Mexico, and while in Portland, she has participated in several productions at PSU, Theater! Theatre! and Miracle Theatre Group, both as a performer and educator.

Abel Rocha, singer and musician, performs music of Latin America. Abel plays Mexican and Venezuelan harp, guitar, quinta huapanguera and Venezuelan cuatro. Born in 1960 in Mexico City (Distrito Federal), Abel received his first musical training and inspirations from his family. At 18 years old, he started university studies in the National School of Anthropology (Escuela nacional de antropologia e historia), and simultaneously started classical guitar studies in the Estudio de Arte Guitarristico de Manuel Lopes Ramos. He co-founded Quetzalcoatl in 1985. Their music was featured in films American Me, and W. I. Warshawski. He co-founded the award winning multi-instrumental vocal duo Correo Aereo with Madeleine Sosin in 1992. Correo Aereo performs traditional and original music of Mexico, Venezuela and Argentina, sometimes joined by Evan Flory Barnes on stand-up bass or Amy Denio on accordion, clarinet and voice. Correo Aereo tours nationally and internationally. Correo Aereo's music has also been featured in film, television and radio.

Christa Rodriguez began her affair with tango as a completely incompetent beginner. Five years later, she is one of the most influential dancers in the city and serves as the primary inspiration for a whole generation of female dancers. She takes great pride in the progress of her students and continues to pursue her study of dance with the same voracious appetite as when she was that wobbly, wide-eyed teenager years ago. Those who know Christa well know her to be a master of creating beauty out of anything; be it sheet metal, a beat-up old guitar, oil on canvas, the intricate movements of tango, or a friend with two left feet.

Jenna Rohrbacher is excited to present Tango Éxtasis to Portlanders who've not had a taste of Argentine tango. After studying in the U.S. and Buenos Aires, Jenna finds that dancing tango is a never-ending search for a complete art, balanced by sensitivity, communication, and aesthetic. She now dances, performs and teaches in Portland as well as other major cities around the U.S. and in Europe. More information on Jenna can be found at

Tanya Saracho was born in Sinaloa, México and is a resident playwright at Chicago Dramatists and Teatro Vista, a Goodman Theater Fellow at the Ellen Stone Belic Institute for the Study of Women and Gender, an Artistic Associate with About Face Theater and the Co-Founder and former Artistic Director of Teatro Luna. Tanya's writing has been featured in most of Teatro Luna's ensemble-built works. Her plays include: El Nogalar a play inspired by The Cherry Orchard commissioned by Teatro Vista and opening in the Spring of 2011 at The Goodman Theater, an adaptation of The House on Mango Street for Steppenwolf SYA (2009), Our Lady of The Underpass with Teatro Vista (2009) and 16th St. Theater/Teatro Vista (2010), Surface Day with Chicago Children's Humanity Festival (2008),Jarred (A Hoodoo Comedy) with Teatro Luna (2008), Kita y Fernanda at 16th Street Theatre (2008) and Quita Mitos with Teatro Luna (2006). Saracho is a recipient of the Ofner Prize given by the Goodman Theatre as well as a 3Arts Artists Award. Tanya is also an actor and a voice over talent. She is currently working on a project titled The Good Private for About Face Theater about a transgendered civil war soldier.

Idit Shner is an active performer of both jazz and classical music, and has played in various distinguished venues in the U.S. and abroad, such as The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and Lincoln Center in New York. Currently Shner plays with her jazz quartet in Eugene and Portland, Oregon. Her latest project involves nursery rhymes and ancient melodies from the Jewish liturgy performed in a jazz setting. In September 2008, her first jazz CD, titled Tuesday's Blues, was released on OA2 Records. Tuesday's Blues got great reviews from JazzTimes, All Music Guide, and Jazz Review. Jazz festival performances include the Diet Coke Woman in Jazz Festival (NY), Bellayre Festival (NY), and New-Trier Jazz Festival (IL). During 2005-2006 Idit frequently played lead alto with Sherrie Maricle and the DIVA Jazz Orchestra.

Charise Castro Smith received a Bachelor's degree in Public Policy/Theater Arts from Brown University and a Master of Fine Arts degree from Yale School of Drama. Her first play, Estrella Cruz [The Junkyard Queen], was produced at the Yale Cabaret. In addition to playwriting, Charise is also an actress, and has performed at Ars Nova, The Public Theater, Lincoln Center Theater, The Guthrie Theater as well as in film and television projects. She was born and raised in Miami and currently resides in Brooklyn. She is so excited and grateful to have her play find a home at Teatro Milagro!

Madeleine Sosin begged for and started playing violin at 4 years old under the Suzuki Method. At 5 years old, she auditioned and was selected to study with Mary West, who became her beloved violin master and teacher of life. Also starting very young her mother took her often to flamenco performances late into the night, and that music stirred and flowed in her blood as the voice of her Spanish Sephardic heritage. At 9 years old, Madeleine was selected to be Concert Mistress of the Minneapolis Youth Symphony where she also performed Solo work. She attended summer music camps under the direction of the members of the world acclaimed St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, where she did both orchestral and chamber work, and was selected to perform solo work. One year later, she also started playing for the St. Paul Youth Symphony where she was 1st Chair 2nd Violin under the direction of Ralph Winkler. At 13 years old, Madeleine took a job playing orchestra for the Children's Theater Company of Minneapolis. At 16 years old, Madeleine continued to expand her creative expression beyond classical music, studying Flamenco with Susanna de Palma and founding her first company, Kithara, a world music and dance company. With Kithara, Madeleine performed in festivals and on street corners. At 18 years of age, Madeleine was accepted into the California Institute of The Arts. Madeleine chose this school because of the interdisciplinary approach to the arts, one that allowed her to be accepted into both the music and dance departments. During this time, she studied violin with Yoko Matsuda, modern and contemporary dance with Gus Solomons Jr., Donald Byrd, Members of Martha Graham Company, Bella Lewitsky Co., & ballet with Mia Slovinska. She studied Javanese and Balinese music with Pakchokro Wenten and dance with I Nyoman & Nanik Wenten. She enjoyed being able to break out of the rigid boundaries of classical music, exploring classical and world music, dance and theatre. Madeleine started acting during this time period, and a few years later, began performing physical theatre with The Palace Theatre (Minneapolis) and Creation Company (New York). She moved to Chicago where she studied theatre and performed with Steppenwolf Theater Ensemble. She continued her theatre studies in New York with Uta Hagen. Madeleine continues to study and explore various art forms and creative expression while being grounded in music.
She co-founded the award winning Latin American music group Correo Aereo with Abel Rocha in 1992 and tours nationally and internationally. Their music has also been featured in television and films such as Universal Pictures, The Life of David Gale, directed by Alan Parker. With Correo Aereo she sings, plays violin, maracas, bombo, jarana and Quijada. For more information about Correo Aereo, go to: , She is also co-founder of AMA Trio with Abel Rocha & Amy Denio. Her countless collaborations include writing, directing & performing "Para Cantarle Al Rio/To Sing A River", a bi-lingual multi-media music & theatre ensemble piece commissioned by the International Seattle Children's Festival. Performing as Concert Mistress at Benaroya Hall & Town Hall Seattle for Evan Flory Barnes's acclaimed, "Acknowledgment of a Celebration", an orchestral suite with dance. "Warped Like Space and Time" with LelaVision at Broadway Performance Hall, Seattle. "Red", and "Gravity of Kindness" with UMO Theatre Company. With Meklit Hadero at the Triple Door, Seattle, "Songs Across Walls of Separation", an International CD project with KKV Records, Norway, and "Moondive", an international collaborative music project for TV, radio and stage, Amsterdam, Holland.

Upper Left Trio plays a unique form of original music that pays homage to the tradition of the jazz piano trio, while looking to the future for inspiration. Incorporating elements both conventional and bold, Upper Left Trio creates a distinctive sound in which the virtuosity of the individual musician serves the song via each player's ability to hear and respond to any and all sonic events. Upper Left Trio is composed of Clay Giberson on piano, Jeff Leonard on bass, and Charlie Doggett on drums.

Edna Vazquez is originally from Colima, Mexico. She started singing when she was 14 years old and today also composes music and writes lyrics. She is studying to be a teacher, and she loves to motivate people through her lyrics, which come from the experiences that she has lived. She is a member of Los Palmeros Mariachi band.

Remanda Xiang grew up with a heart and soul for music and arts. She devoted many of her school years learning and performing Chinese folk dances. For the past three years, she has been dancing tango nonstop, which helped her develop her own understanding and style of Argentine tango.

José Zorrilla y Moral (1817-1893) was a Spanish Romantic poet and dramatist educated by the Jesuits at the Real Seminario de Nobles in Madrid. In 1833 he was sent to study law at the University of Toledo, but after a year of idleness, he fled to Madrid, where he horrified the friends of his absolutist father by making violent speeches and by founding a newspaper which was promptly suppressed by the government. He narrowly escaped transportation to the Philippines, and passed the next few years in poverty. The death of the satirist Mariano José de Larra brought Zorrilla into notice. His elegiac poem, read at Larra's funeral in February 1837, introduced him to the leading men of letters. In 1837 he published a book of verses, mostly imitations of Alphonse de Lamartine and Victor Hugo, which was so favorably received that he printed six more volumes within three years. After collaborating with Antonio García Gutiérrez on the play Juán Dondolo (1839) Zorrilla began his individual career as a dramatist with Cada cual con su razón (1840), and during the next five years he wrote 22 plays, many of them extremely successful. His Cantos del trovador (1841), a collection of national legends written in verse, made Zorrilla second only to José de Espronceda in popular esteem. National legends also supply the themes of his dramas, which Zorrilla often constructed by adapting older plays that had fallen out of fashion. For example, in El Zapatero y el Rey he recasts El montanés Juan Pascual by Juan de la Hoz y Mota; in La mejor Talon la espada he borrows from Agustín Moreto y Cavana's Travesuras del estudiante Pa-atoja. His famous play Don Juan Tenorio is a combination of elements from Tirso de Molina's Burlador de Sevilla and from Alexandre Dumas père's Don Juan de Marana. He considered his last play, Traidor, inconfeso y mártir (1845) his best play.

For more than 25 years, the Miracle Theatre Group has been dedicated to bringing the vibrancy of Latino theatre to the Northwest community. In addition to its national tours, Miracle provides a home for Spanish and Latin American arts and culture at El Centro Milagro, where it enriches the local community with a variety of community outreach projects and educational programs designed to share the diversity of Latino culture. For more information about the Miracle Theatre Group, visit or call 503-236-7253.

Miracle Theatre Group is funded in part by Meyer Memorial Trust, Oregon Arts Commission, National Endowment for the Arts, Regional Arts & Culture Council and Work for Art, The Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, The Kinsman Foundation, The Collins Foundation, James F. & Marion L. Miller Foundation, Juan Young Trust, Oregon Cultural Trust, The Shubert Foundation, and Oregon Community Foundation.

The PGE Foundation, the corporate foundation of Portland General Electric, was established in 1997 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization with a permanent endowment. The Foundation's giving is separate from the corporate giving of PGE. Since its inception, the Foundation has distributed more than $13 million to help improve the quality of life for all Oregonians by supporting statewide programs and services that encourage healthy families, provide educational opportunities and encourage the arts and cultural diversity. Gwyneth Gamble Booth is chair and Carole Morse is president. Since 2000, PGE Foundation has supported the Miracle Theatre Group with four grants totaling $37,500. To learn more about the PGE Foundation, visit

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