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Spain-based, Canadian flamenco music, dance ensemble performs at Shambhala Music Hall

By Contributor
July 3rd, 2018

Fin De Fiesta is a professional touring ensemble of award-winning international flamenco artists based in Spain that is coming to Nelson to perform July 19 at the Shambhala Music Hall. 

Direct from Spain – Fin de Fiesta Flamenco dance and music ensemble will travel across Canada this summer to present SALVAJE, an untamed new production that explores the wild, unrestrained side of one of the world’s most passionate and intense art forms: flamenco.

The searing vocals of Alejandro Mendia (Noces Gitanes, France) are accompanied by the intricate guitar arpeggios of Dennis Duffin (Ventanas, Canada) and the haunting flute melodies of Lara Wong (Vancouver/Madrid). Dancer Lia Grainger (2017 Certamen New York International Flamenco Competition finalist) brings the stage to life with fierce and sensual choreographies and improvisations and Hanser Gomez (Cuba) holds down the rhythm on cajon. Stunning guest dancer Deborah “La Caramelita” (Noces Gitanes, France) will also join the ensemble for this tour only.

Though they come from France, Cuba, and Canada, Fin de Fiesta’s core members all spend live in Spain, collaborating with and drawing inspiration from the world’s best flamenco singers, dancers and guitarists.

Dancer and artistic director Lia Grainger was once a collegiate level basketball player, and then an award-winning journalist, but she left her life in Toronto behind to pursue flamenco full time in Madrid’s hallowed Amor de Dios Academy.

Further south in Seville, cradle of flamenco, Fin de Fiesta guitarist Dennis Duffin has become a true local, playing in the ancient city’s peñas and collaborating with its master artists.

Though he is a trained astrophysicist, Duffin gave up that career to play flamenco in the streets and clubs of Spain.

The group’s singer Alejandro Mendia is from Bordeaux, France, but spends much of the year in Jerez, singing with the masters of the flamenco art form, and Canadian flautist Lara Wong plays regularly in Madrid’s most respected flamenco establishments.

This year, for the first time since their founding in 2012, Fin de Fiesta will be joined for the entirety of their 40-show Canadian tour by reknowned guest dancer Deborah “La

Caramelita.” Raised in Canada to parents of Indian origin, Deborah moved to Spain at the age of 18 and never looked back. In the decade that has passed since her arrival, she has developed a truly spectacular style all her own, at once savage and refined.

Also joining the ensemble for the first time is Cuban percussionist Hanser Santos Gomez. Born and raised in Havana and currently based in Montreal, Gomez has performed around the world and brings an unmistakable latin flavour to the group’s repertoire with his irresistible rhythmic playfulness.

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