Lluvia Flamenca Unites the Southwest and the World
If you've ever wandered into Crescent Ballroom early on a Saturday evening, you've likely been privy to the bewitching performances of Flamenco Por La Vida. Led by Angelina Ramirez and Carlos Montufar, the group expresses its Latin gypsy soul through sound and dance in the Ballroom's lounge weekly, but on Thursday, November 21 the group will take over the main stage of the Ballroom proper, as part of the multinational flamenco celebration, Lluvia Flamenca.
Courtesy Flamenco Por Vida
"Lluvia Flamenca, meaning Flamenco Rain, actually was a production that my first dance director Olivia Rojo, produced in Tucson," explains Ramirez, who founded Flamenco Por La Vida in 2009. Lluvia Flamenca finds Ramirez and her company sharing the stage with like-minded acts like Juncal Street, CBJ Flamenco Ensemble, and Flamenco Del Pueblo Viejo, with membership featuring musical ambassadors from Spain, France, the United States, and Mexico.
"As a company member of Flamenco Y Mas, we danced choreography set by renowned artists as well as performed with guest artists," Rameriez says. "She named it lluvia because her production always showed during monsoon season. When Charlie [Levy, Stateside Presents and Crescent Ballroom owner] asked me to do some kind of flamenco festival, I thought the name would be appropriate. For me it's 'Go big or go home.' So I thought bringing Arizona artists together along with guest artists from all over would be nothing but a storm."
The flamenco roadshow continues the following night in the Old Pueblo, with a performance at the Rialto Theatre in Tucson. The connection, Ramirez says, is natural.