Jesús Carmona, “the fenómeno of the Flamenco World”: He won Best International Artist and
Best Production. This is the first time a candidate bagged two Latin UK
Awards for the same category in the same edition
By Rose Maramba
The UK isn’t exactly what would come to mind when one thinks of awarding Latin artists for their outstanding achievements. But there you have it, The LUKAS (Latin UK Awards) giving recognition to the growing global impact of the Latinos in six categories, thereby covering practically all the manifestations of the diverse Latino culture: Dance, Theatre, Film, Art, Sport and Music. And it is the only Latin Awards ceremony of its kind in Europe too! Couldn’t Spain have thought up something like it before the UK did? After all, apart from Portuguese (think Brazilian), “Latin” – as in Latin American – is all but synonymous to Spanish.
Well, at least, a sensational Spanish (from Spain) bailaor has won two awards in the Dance category this year: Best International Artist and Best Production. This is the first time a candidate has won two awards for the same category in the same LUKAS edition. He is Jesús Carmona.
A native of Barcelona, Carmona won Best Production for his ÍMPETU’S which premiered late in 2015. After which Carmona took the flamenco show to such cities as Miami, Albuquerque, Santiago de Chile and Los Angeles in 2017. So far, in 2018, it’s been to Portland, Boston, New York, Manchester and London, reaping rave reviews from the international press and great enthusiasm from the public. So much so that Carmona appeared in The New York Times thrice in a single week! TNYT referred to him as “a fenómeno of the Flamenco World.”
Heather Wisner of Oregon Artswatch wrote last March: “Pure happiness doesn’t seem to exist in flamenco; a hint of melancholy, a sense of world weariness, suffuses the music and the dance. But there is pure happiness to be found in watching flamenco, especially when it’s done very well. [And] Jesús Carmona does flamenco very well.”
Further, Carmona “has entangled ballet and flamenco to make something astonishing,” comments Wisner.
During its world tour, ÍMPETU’S performed before a packed Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London, The Lowry in Manchester, New York City Center, Lincoln Center of New York, and Berklee Performance Center in Boston. It was shown in France, Brazil, Italy, Bulgaria . . .
In September, Carmona will take ÍMPETU’S to Dubai (Dubai Opera) and to China (Suzhou Arts Center).
While he waited for the LUKAS gala, Carmona spent the whole month of July wowing the audiences at the historic Tablao Flamenco Cordobes in his hometown.
The annual LUKAS kicked off six years ago to recognize the impact of Latino culture in the UK. And to think that there are just a measly one million Latin American, Spanish and Portuguese residents in the Land of the Brits! This year the gala ceremony will be held on 9 August at Troxy in London.
LUKAS awardees win by popular vote (50%) and by the vote of a jury of experts (50%). Twenty-one in all garnered awards in the different categories in the 2018 edition.
Images supplied except
LUKAS logo/Fair use
Carmona in ÍMPETU’S from Carmona’s official website
Troxy/Jbanham91, CC BY-SA4.0