White Bird Welcomes Compania Jesus Carmona to the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
White Bird presents one of Spain's most acclaimed new flamenco companies, Compañia Jesús Carmona, which will make its Portland debut at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall on Wednesday, March 14. Dance prodigy and pioneer in flamenco's evolution, Jesús Carmona has shared the stage with Spain's most legendary flamenco artists. For the Portland premiere, Jesús Carmona and his company of 10 dancers, musicians, and vocalists perform his emotionally charged, vibrant program Ímpetu's ("bursting with energy").
Jesús Carmona is a former dancer with Ballet Nacional de España. The flawless footwork and ballet-infused moves that make him one of flamenco's most dynamic performers can be found in the world-acclaimed performances of his company Compañia Jesús Carmona. From Jesús' early career as a performer to his first steps with his own company, he has developed an artistic maturity by showcasing flamenco culture in his work. Ímpetus provides a fresh artistic interpretation of Spain's greatest musical scores and reflects on Jesús stunning evolution as one of Spain's most powerful flamenco artists. Excerpts of the work premiered in the United States at the 2015 Fall for Dance Festival in New York City.
Ímpetu's explores the boundless energy that drives artists to realize their dreams. The 75-minute program, starring the spellbinding and charismatic Carmona, features famed Spanish scores by Albéniz, Riqueni, and Escudero and reflects the dance technique and music that have enabled him to grow as an artist and that have influenced his life and his character, both professionally and personally.
Born in Barcelona in 1985, Jesús Carmona began his dance training at age seven. He graduated with a degree in Spanish Dance and Flamenco from the Institute of Theatre and Dance of Barcelona in 2004. Carmona made his professional debut at the Teatro Zorrilla in Barcelona at age 16. Since then, he has worked with diverse companies such as the Ballet Nacional de España as first dancer, Nuevo Ballet Español, Carmen Cortes, El Guito, and Antonio Canales, amongst others. Carmona's technique, style and art have been well received by the critics. Carmona won the prestigious First Dance Award at the 52nd Festival de cante de las Minas de la Union 2012, the "First Outstanding Dancer" in the XX Flamenco and Spanish dance Contest 2011, and the 3rd prize for choreography in the competition Nou Barris in 2001.
Carmona's desire to showcase his personal side and pave his way into the arts led him to leave the National Ballet of Spain and embark on a new adventure in Black and white crib. Presented at the Bienal de Sevilla and Madrid en Danza in 2012, and Festival de Jerez 2013, the work was received as a major success. In 2014, he presented 7 Balcones, the second production with his own company. In this same year he participated in a tribute to Carmen Amaya La Capitana presented at the National Theatre of Catalonia alongside Rocío Molina, Mayte Martín and Ramón Oller. Carmona was principal dancer alongside Antonio Canales, Karime Amaya and Carlos Rodríguez at the Flamenco Festival Gala Flamenca, touring around the world and obtaining great reviews from press and audience. The Miami Nuevo Herald responded to the performance saying "2014 will be in our memories as the year that Jesús Carmona visited Miami."
White Bird's 20th season (2017-18) is supported by the Regional Arts & Culture Council, including support from the City of Portland, Multnomah County and the Arts Education & Access Fund; Work for Art; The James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, M.J. Murdock Charitable Trust, Oregon Arts Commission, Oregon Cultural Trust, and Starseed Foundation.