The Flamenco Soul Project was born from the Young Flamenco Project, and both are coproduced by Spain Arts & Culture and the MMI. The Flamenco Soul Project band, composed of four Berklee students and two young flamenco artists, performed on the Blue Note Festival circuit, at the BBKING in New York, the Howard Theater in Washington, the Baltimore Soundstage in Baltimore, and the Arsenal Center For the Arts near Boston. The institute's goal with this project was to give our students professional opportunities and to promote new fusions of Mediterranean musical styles.
Flamenco Soul offered a musical journey: a glimpse of flamenco's oldest and most original styles, an overview of its distinct paths of evolution, its experimental modes of today, and a preview to flamenco's future.
The band was formed by two global studies students from Berklee in Valencia, Puerto Rican flute player Jeremy de Jesus and Mexican drummer José Andrés Marquez, Presidential Scholarship student Ariadna Castellanos ’12, and bass player Tamir Schmeling ’12. It also includesthe young and innovative flamenco dancer Nino de Los Reyes, and cajón player Jose Montaña.
In Flamenco Soul we have flamenco artists who know the flamenco roots and traditions very well, are already embedded within the flamenco community and well-respected by professionals and the grand masters in their field. These artists are young and highly skilled, their knowledge of avant-garde music, major music styles, and the world of performing arts in general allows them to transgress and restructure a thousand-year-old art without losing a bit of essence.
In this show we pay tribute to the flamenco dancers that have kept the flame alive for 100 years. Nino de los Reyes's dance is inspired by the great flamenco dancers, such as Carmen Amaya, and Ariadna Castellanos plays pieces by Paco de Lucía, as she usually does in her concerts.
The participation of Puerto Rican flute player Jeremy de Jesus as well as Mexican drummer Jose Andrés Marquez and the other band members enrich the selected repertoire as they bring their unique styles to the music.
- Javier Limón