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Luz | Kuumbwa Jazz

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Date(s) - 02/06/2016
8:00 PM - 10:00 PM

Kuumbwa Jazz


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In Spanish, dar a luz means to give birth. This definition symbolizes the heart of Luz— a flamenco project honoring mothers who live and work as artists. Luz will explore the labors and joys found in balancing a life as caregiver and creator. It will feature choreography by award-winning artist, Fanny Ara, introduce world-class flamenco musicians from across the globe, and present American flamenco dancer and mother, Mele Martinez. Luz seeks to inspire, to embolden, and to enlighten those who recognize the synergy between motherhood and artistry.

This work will be infused with the development of vintage styles of flamenco, but structured in more innovative musical contexts aiming to give the community a message of how motherhood and creativity can do more than intersect – they can merge to nurture generations of artists to come. Luz is the first solo concert for flamenco artist, Mele Martinez, who aims to make every performance both emotionally and spiritually honest.

Flamenco is an art about family, communication, and the sacred and Mele’s approach is grounded in these values which help to transmit stories of pain, loss, and redemption through gestures that carry personal significance and through meticulous connections to music and to others.

Luz will feature a solo dancer, celebrating the art of of flamenco dance in its most authentic style of the art form, and one that is rarely showcased in the United States. Also unique to the project, Luz will focus on a narrative – the story of a woman who grows in artistic expression in tandem with her role as mother. The narrative will also be informed by newly composed music that will borrow from traditional rhythms and progress into modern lyricism. Content will also move out of common themes in flamenco to more complex motifs. Working against stereotypes of the flamenco dancer as both a symbol of sex and passion, and more specifically the typecasts of female flamenco dancer as an object of conventional Latina beauty, Luz will more accurately present the image of woman, particularly in the role of motherhood, as a being both defeated and elated, both sensual and cerebral, and both lost and redeemed.

Luz will first be presented in small venues throughout California,Arizona, and New Mexico. Aesthetically, this is the most authentic and effective method of showcasing flamenco and the intimacy of small venues will best present not only the delicate nature of flamenco’s sound quality, but also the warmth of this solo-dancer project.

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