FLAMENCO DEL ORO: the music and dance troupe returns with a stunning guest lineup

Kina&GopalThe Emerald Tablet is very pleased to welcome back Flamenco Del Oro, a flamenco music and dance troupe with attitude and spirit delivering syncopated and sensual rhythms made with passionate guitar, intoxicating vocals, and fiery beautiful dancing.

Join us Friday April 19th, 8-10 pm for another unforgettable performance with Flamenco del Oro and very special guests. Admission is $10 suggested donation for the performers, but no one will be turned away for lack of funds. Red and white wine, Solera and complimentary food will be available. Ole’!

Flamenco del Oro core members are guitarist Gopal Slavonic and singer and dancer Kina Mendez. Performing with them will be dancer Melissa Cruz, along with Rebecca Kleinmann on flute and Benjamin Flores on guitar. Please view the following videos for a small preview of their remarkable talents, and scroll down to read their biographies (after the fold).

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. Performing in festivals such as ‘La Fiesta de las Bulerias’ and ‘Las Fiestas 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. Kina was a featured artist at the prestigious Festival de Jerez in 2009 and her debut recording ‘de Sevilla a Jerez’ was released in 2008. Her explosive, expressive presence on stage and her dynamic vocal range has made her a sought after performer both in Spain and the US.

Gopal Slavonic trained at the prestigious ‘Fundacion de Arte Flamenco Cristina Heeren’ in Sevilla, Spain where he studied intensively with leading flamenco guitarists Miguel Angel Cortez, Jose Postigo, Antonio Carmona, Eduardo Rollabar, Tino Van Der Sman, and Joselito Galvez. In his 17 years of dedication to flamenco guitar, Gopal has returned to Spain to further his studies several times, most frequently to Jerez de la Frontera. He has performed with flamenco artists including Cerro Negro, La Fibi, Mark Taylor, La Carola, Roberto Zamora, Pilar Moreno, Zahara, and Jose Galvez. Gopal recently released his second CD ‘Dos Orillas’ and is the featured guitarist for Northern California’s Flamenco del Oro.

Originally from New Orleans, Louisiana, Melissa Cruz is a Bay Area-based flamenco professional and has been a full-time flamenco artist for the past 10 years. After being exposed to flamenco while studying Spanish at UC Berkeley, she began dancing with Rosa Montoya and soon thereafter, joined Ms. Montoya’s professional company. Since then, she has built a career dancing, mentoring new dancers and choreographing flamenco across the United States. Garnering years of experience as a company dancer and soloist, she presented her own production in 2007, La Vida Flamenca. She can often be seen performing at the most prestigious theaters, including the San Francisco Opera House and the Hollywood Bowl, as well as at smaller venues like Yoshi’s Jazz Club and the Elbo Room. (Melissa’s website)

Growing up in a family of musicians and caregivers, Rebecca Kleinmann uses melody as a means to connect with others. She played the violin at age four, piano at six, and choose flute at age 11. After developing her exceptional talent in Youth Symphonies, Gospel Churches, and Appalachian folk music sessions, Rebecca pursued a bachelor’s degree at the prestigious Indiana University School of Music. She entered IU as a Classical Flute and Environmental Science Major, and emerged with degrees in Jazz and Spanish. A fearless traveler, Rebecca has steeped her ears in corners of the world ranging from Jazz clubs in NYC to Flamenco gatherings in Spain, pubs in Ireland to European symphony halls, and music festivals in California to dance parades in Brazil. (Rebecca’s website)

Renowned guitar master Benjamin Flores‘s lineage in the flamenco tradition traces directly to his teacher, Gypsy legend Diego del Gastor, creator and best known exponent of the guitar playing tradition of MorĂ³n de la Frontera, Sevilla. Benjamin Flores has performed for decades in flamenco venues, including the Old Spaghetti Factory and La Bodega right here in North Beach. We are excited and honored to welcome Benjamin to the flamenco sessions at The Emerald Tablet after his recent return from Mexico.

Friday April 19th 2013, 7:30 pm doors, 8 pm music, until 10pm.
The Emerald Tablet, 80 Fresno St, San Francisco, CA 94133 (map)
$10 suggested donation, sliding scale. Nobody turned away for lack of funds.
Drinks and refreshments available.
All door donations go to the musicians!

Please visit flamencodeloro.com to learn more about the Flamenco Del Oro troupe.

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