Gabriela Granados started her dance training at the age of four, studying a wide range of classical and regional Spanish dances as well as Flamenco, Classical Ballet, Character dance and Latin American folklore. In 1985, her professional studies took her to Spain, where she made her debut at the Tablao Flamenco Los Canasteros, under the direction of Cristóbal Reyes. Other teachers in Madrid include La Tati, Paco Romero, Eloy Pericet, Pacita Tomás, Joaquín Villa and Ciro; and in Seville, Milagros Menjíbar, Javier Cruz, Manolo Marín, El Pipa and Javier La Torre. Ms. Granados also performed in Madrid’s tablaos Las Brujas and Zambra, where she had the opportunity to work next to well-known flamenco professionals such as La Bronce, El Camborio, Diego El Cigala, Pedro Montoya, La Tobala, La Tania, Dolores de Córdoba and many others. In New York, Ms. Granados has trained extensively with various flamenco teachers, among them José Molina, La China, Estrella Morena, Mariano Parra, Manolo Rivera, Maria Alba, Victorio, Jerane Michel, Mariquita Flores, Luis Montero, and her mentor Orlando Romero. In the US, she has also performed with the flamenco companies of Maria Benítez, Andrea del Conte, Carlota Santana, and with flamenco artists La Conja, Pedro Cortés, La Meira, Chuny Amaya, Liliana Morales, Concha Vargas, Juan Siddi, Chuscales and Antonio Granjero.
While appearing in classical productions, she performed in full-length ballets such as The Nutcracker, Giselle, Les Sylphides, Carmen, Pugni’s Grand Pas de Quatre, and other works by choreographer Christine Neubert. Ms. Granados has been on the faculty of the Neubert Ballet Institute for over a decade, an artist in residence at LaGuardia High School of Music, Art & the Performing Arts, on the faculty of Broadway Dance Center, a freelance teacher at Fazil’s Times Circle Rehearsal Studios, and a guest teacher and lecturer for the Dance Department of New York University and Barnard College.
Her choreographic credits include the creation of Spanish dances for Ballet Municipal de Lima in Perú, Cuadro Flamenco for New York’s Pancho Villa, La Traviata for Virginia Opera and Mannes Opera, Carmen -with soprano Denyce Graves- for Orlando Opera, La Vida Breve for DiCapo Opera Theatre, Goyescas and La Vida Breve for Bronx Symphony, and the original version of El Amor Brujo for Wesleyan University’s Ensemble of the Americas, where she performed with gypsy flamenco singer Esperanza Fernández.
Ms. Granados also creates numerous dances for American Bolero Dance Company, which she founded in 1996 to present other aspects of Spanish music and dance, besides Flamenco. In May 2002, her company received a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts in the category of Heritage and Preservation. Her work for ABDC encompasses classical and folkloric Spanish dances, 18th Century Bolero, Zarzuela and Flamenco. Affiliated with her company, Ms. Granados also founded in 2002 the Spanish Dance School, the first school in Queens, NY, dedicated exclusively to the preservation of all these dance styles; this includes at least one performance a year in a theatrical venue, for all her dedicated students.
As artistic director, dancer and choreographer of ABDC, Ms. Granados has successfully presented her productions in New York City, the Mid-Atlantic States and Europe, often appearing as a guest soloist with various companies, such as Queens Symphony, Baltimore Opera and Orchestra of St. Luke’s in Carnegie Hall. In October 2005, she created Spanish Gems, presented by the Flushing Council on Culture and the Arts, at Flushing Town Hall. In October 2007, Ms. Granados toured in upstate New York and Connecticut with The Sherman Ensemble and the Saratoga String Players, performing her newly created work Fandango by Luigi Boccherini. In September 2008, she performed with her company at the Metropolitan Opera in Lincoln Center, for a fundraising gala honoring tenor Plácido Domingo. She produces and performs in Tablao Flamenco, an ongoing series of shows taking place in Astoria, Queens since November 2008, that features live Flamenco and other styles of Spanish dance and music. The company has been awarded NYSCA and NYC DCA decentralized funding through the Queens Council on the Arts and direct funding from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs for the series. ABDC’s performances around NYC include the participation at the Queens County Folk Festival, on September 2009 at Queens College, and the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival at Flushing Meadows Park, on August 2010.
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