Eva Yerbabuena brings flamenco dancers, plus musicians, to Mondavi

By From page A11 | March 07, 2014

Eva Yerbabuena1W

Eva Yerbabuena dances traditional works in Ballet Flamenco. Klaus Handner/Courtesy photo

Ballet Flamenco Eva Yerbabuena — a company featuring five dancers, three singers, a guitarist and a percussionist — will visit the Mondavi Center on Tuesday, March 11, at 8 p.m., performing a program titled “Lluvia” (“Rain”).

Born in 1970, Eva Yerbabuena grew up in the Spanish city of Granada, formed her company in 1998 and has toured extensively since then (with some time off periodically for the birth of a child). She received the Spanish Ministry of Culture’s Premio Nacional de Danza award in 2001, and the Andalusian Medalla de Cultura in 2007, as well as several Max Stage Arts Awards as best female dancer, in 2004, 2005 and 2010.

According to Yerbabuena, her program “Lluvia,” which premiered in 2009, was appropriately “born on a gray day of pure melancholy” and “is a tribute to melancholy and coldness, to being alive, and to the endlessness of life.”

Reviewing a performance at London’s Sadler’s Wells Theatre in 2010, critic Judith Mackrell of The Guardian wrote, “La Yerbabuena’s percussive footwork is powered into bursts of rhythmic intensity so detailed you hear them as angry, despairing monologues. Her arms are almost as eloquent — striking with the defensive speed of a cobra or stilled to a heartbreaking simplicity.

“When she slowly unclenches her fists and stares at her empty palms, the moment speaks of pure loneliness.”

Tickets for the Mondavi Center performance are $25-$49, available at www.mondaviarts.org or 530-754-2787.

Jeff Hudson

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