Attention Londoners! I’ve got a brilliant plan for you this weekend. The wonderful guitarist, José Almarcha is coming to town to present his new album “Alejandra” and there will be 3 concerts with the participation of Lucía Ruibal, flamenco dancer and Demi Garcia Sabat, percussionist. Not to mention the guitar and mantón workshops…
Oh yes, José and Lucía in London! Let the weekend begin! Right, it’s only Wednesday, so while we wait for the rain to stop and the weekend to arrive, let me share some info about the artists, followed by details of the shows and where to get your tickets.
About the artists: José is from a Spanish town called Tomelloso in Castilla La Mancha, the land of Don Quijote. He started playing guitar at a very young age and then went on to study flamenco at the Cordoba Conservatory of Music with great flamenco guitar masters such as Paco Serrano and Niño de Pura. He participated in many guitar competitions and in 2007 won the II. International Flamenco Guitar Competition “Niño Ricardo”. He often works with renowned flamenco artists like Olga Pericet and Marco Flores and travelled the world accompanying flamenco stars like Antonio Canales. “Alejandra” is his second solo album; his debut album “Vejézate” was published in 2015 and had excellent reception. Have a look at his website for a more detailed biography and his upcoming concerts.
Lucía was born in El Puerto de Santa María, Cádiz, where I, personally left my heart in Spain. In the UK, I always explain Cádiz as the place between Gibraltar and Portugal, references people know here. It’s in the south, in Andalusia, where you can meet -if you are lucky- some of the kindest and warmest people; their heart is huge, their soul is profound, they came about flamenco to express love, joy, death and sorrow. Lucía is one them. She found her passion for dance very young. Surely, her father, singer-songwriter Javier Ruibal and her brother, drummer-percussionist Javi Ruibal had an influence on her artistic awakening. She started with classical ballet but moved onto flamenco in her teenage years and trained with such incredible flamenco dancers as La Lupi and Mercedes Ruíz. She studied flamenco dance at the Conservatory of Málaga, then moved to Madrid where she performs regularly at tablaos, with major flamenco groups such as those of Rafael Amargo or Juan de Juan, with her father Javier Ruibal or most recently with Miguel Ríos and Amaral.
Demi is originally from Barcelona but is London based since 1999. He studied at the London College of Music and the Barcelona Conservatory of Music. He is a versatile persussionist who performs with flamenco, jazz, Latin and Arabic groups around the UK and Europe. More details on his website.
This is a unique opportunity to see artists from Spain who may not be the most well known names out there (just wait until they will be!) but they are those artists with deep flamenco roots and passion. A concert like this, the presentation of José’s new album that bears the name of his mother, promises to be a special one. José remembers his mum through the language of music, taking us on a journey from childhood memories through the universality of music; suggesting a personal and intimate experience.
There will be 3 concerts and 2 workshops as follows:
8 April (Friday) 8.30pm Concert at Battersea Spanish (263-265 Battersea Park Road, London, SW11 4NE). Tickets available here.
9 April (Saturday) 3.30-5.30pm Mantón workshop with Lucía at Battersea Spanish (263-265 Battersea Park Road, London, SW11 4NE). Tickets available here.
9 April (Saturday) 7.00pm Concert at Battersea Spanish (263-265 Battersea Park Road, London, SW11 4NE). Tickets available here.
10 April (Sunday) 3-5pm Guitar Masterclass with José at the Peña Flamenco de Londres (Church Hall of the Holy Apostles, Cumberland Street, Pimlico, London, SW1V 4LY). Tickets available on eventbrite.
10 April (Sunday) 7.30pm Concert at the Peña Flamenco de Londres (Church Hall of the Holy Apostles, Cumberland Street, Pimlico, London, SW1V 4LY). Tickets available on eventbrite.
See you on Saturday? I will be there!