Flamenco Festival presents Flamenco Singing Star
First Major North American Tour supports new CD "Autoretratto"
featuring her late father, legendary flamenco singer Enrique Morente
Tour includes Carnegie Hall, Chicago Symphony Center, LA's Royce Hall, Miami's Arsht Center and DC's Strathmore Theatre
"The first time I saw Estrella Morente live, was at a concert at the Madrid College of Medicine in 1998. I was speechless. No other artist had ever impressed me as much on stage......It seemed impossible, someone so young with so much wisdom at the same time. Or was it intuition? Or was it in the genes? Who cares? For me, that day, a star was born (her first name, Estrella means 'star' in Spanish).
Today, fate has forced Estrella to become matriarch of a family quite unlike any other in the Spanish arts realm. She began recording her new album with her father, mentor and teacher, as well as producer, the great Enrique Morente. He was unable to finish it.
"Autorretrato" (Self Portrait) is pure magic. It consists of seemingly disparate tracks which, passed through the filter of Estrella's voice, become one, in a kind of unique composition, an oratory in several movements. It is like a confession, even a statement. It is the overwhelming intimacy of the music which makes it a self -portrait. The self-portrait of a great star. Estrella, as she is today. "
- Fernando Trueba [film director/producer, Calle 54, Chico and Rita]
Estrella Morente: Autorretrato (Self-Portrait):
Autorretrato is the third album by Estrella Morente, breaking a six year recording hiatus since the release of Mujeres in 2006. There are 15 tracks, including collaborations with Michael Nyman and Pat Metheny to old sevillanas, a classic habanera by Carlos Cano, a sophisticated approach to caribbean rhythms, and heart-rending seguirillas accompanied by Paco de Lucía at the guitar. Guest musicians include flamemco guitarists Tomatito and Vicente Amigo. The album closes with “Adagio”, an extraordinary duet featuring her late father, Enrique Morente, who passed away shortly after recording the song.
The Press Says…
“Her physical authority is at one with her amazing voice.” The Guardian UK
“ Her grand finale, walking out of the state, breaks into pieces that imaginary barrier between the singer and the audience. It electrified the room. Everyone ended eating at her hand. A rare twilight moment where everybody felt part of a ritual” Huffington Post, UK
“A singer of amazing power and rhythmic control.” New York Times
“A reminder that flamenco is foremost an improvisational music, and in the hands of Morente and her collaborators remains a living, breathing tradition.” BBC Radio
Estrella Morente (Es-TRAY-ah Mor-RENT-ay) was born in Granada, the eldest daughter of the legendary flamenco singer Enrique Morente and the dancer Aurora Carbonell. She grew up surrounded by flamenco and has since become one of Spain’s most sought-after performers.
She came to the attention of audiences worldwide as the singing voice behind Penelope Cruz in Pedro Almodovar’s hit film Volver. Estrella was nominated for a Grammy for best flamenco recording for her debut CD Mujeres (Women).
Recently, she recorded De Falla’s El Amor Brujo with the Spanish National Orchestra, under the direction of Maestro Joseph Pons. She has sung with the top orchestras across Spain and Catalunya and her recordings have reached platinum status
She is a fervent admirer of La Niña los Peines, Camarón de la Isla, Marchena, Vallejo, and of course, her father Enrique. Lola Flores, María Callas and Montserrat Caballé have all influenced Estrella’s approach to singing.
Estrella Morente has adhered to simple and untainted song forms and her singing is neither pure nor orthodox, but contains that edge of personality that makes for a true revolution in the best tradition of flamenco cante.