ESPERANZA FERNÁNDEZ (Sevilla, 1966) is, without any doubt, one of the main voices of flamenco cante (singing) at present. In addition to her excellent faculties, already proved in countless concerts, she has a large repertoire. An extreme versatile singer, she has lent her voice to many different musical styles.
Names such as: Yehudi Menuhin, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Mauricio Sotelo, Edmon Colomer, Rosa Torres Pardo, Angel Gil Ordoñez, Myrian Makeba, Enrique Morente, Noa, Edward Simmons, Juan de Udaeta, Rafael Riqueni, Kiko Veneno, José Miguel Evora and ensembles such as: Trío Accanto, Perpectives Ensemble (NYC), Lim (Madrid), Orquesta Nacional de España, Orquesta de Barcelona y Nacional de Cataluña, Orquesta Filarmónica de Málaga, Orquesta Joven de Andalucía, The Wesleyan Ensemble of the Americas, mark the career of ESPERANZA.
Her artistic versatility has taken her to make concerts in such different line ups as duo, trio, quartet, jazz bands, big bands, chamber orchestras and symphonies.
Her international projection has reached places such as New York, Paris, Bergen, Lisbon, Tampere, Brasilia, Marrakech, Cologne, Brussels, Rome, Toulouse, Connecticut, Thesaloniki, among others.
Born a gypsy in the legendary neighbourhood of Triana, she received her Flamenco legacy in a family of important cantaores, guitarists and dancers. Flamenco flows in her veins and she’s got the future in her hands. Gifted with privileged qualities for singing, her throat produces a delicate and gorgeous voice allowing her to interpret different and varied styles –laying her voice down as an offering before her talent.
From a very early age ESPERANZA FERNÁNDEZ began the search for her own place in the Flamenco Art scene. At sixteen she made her debut as primera cantaora (lead singer) in an important show, Mario Maya’s “Amargo” (Bitter). From then on she has seen continuous and inexhaustible progress, and shared the stage with such important artists as Paco de Lucía, Camarón de la Isla, Rafael Riqueni, Enrique Morente...
ESPERANZA FERNÁNDEZ is one of the best voices of contemporary flamenco, an art form that has found in her one of its unquestionable artists. Her youth and her profound knowledge of traditional flamenco may surprise us. But she has proved that her voice will remain steady, and that she can happily face new challenges, however hard they may seem. Her impressive sense of rhythm and melody, her age, a voice rich in nuances and a great elegance allow her to tread the most traditional roads of flamenco as well as other experimental paths closer to fusion, musical crossovers and classical world performing “La Vida Breve”, “El Amor Brujo,”, “Siete Canciones Españolas” and participating in the recuperation of the opera “Margot” by Turina (Teatro de la Maestranza in Sevilla 1999).
An imaginative, original and instinctive cantaora (singer), always willing to draw nearer to other artistic genres, she has mastered since her childhood the secrets of the stage and possesses the duende (the artistic gift) to reach out to the public by means of her pure tientos, soleás, alegrías, bulerías...
1994 was the year of artistic consolidation for ESPERANZA FERNÁNDEZ. With Enrique Morente, she starred in “A Oscuras”, one of the most successful shows of the 7th Bienal de Arte Flamenco that took place at Teatro de la Maestranza in Seville.
Since 1995 she has collaborated with the Orquesta Jovén de Andalucía on several occasions to perform Manuel de Falla’s “El Amor Brujo”. With this ensemble she will record the complete version of the work by the archetypal Spanish classical composer, under the direction of Juan Udaeta. This unprecedented recording coincided in 1995 with the prize Premio Andalucía Jovén de Flamenco awarded by the Culture Council of Andalucía. At the beginning of 1996 the Orquesta Sinfónica de Barcelona i Nacional de Catalunya, directed by Edmon Colomer, chose Esperanza Fernández for the recording they made of the 1915 version of “El Amor Brujo” to commemorate the Manuel de Falla memorial year.
This same work has given her the opportunity to act with the following orchestras: Sinfónica de Valencia, Sinfónica de Galicia, Ciudad de Granada, Nacional de Brasil, as well as others. In 2001 she recorded “El Amor Brujo” with the Spanish National Orchestra conducted by Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, closing the International Music and Dance Festival in Granada. The CD was released in February 2002.
The versatility of her voice, has allowed her to perform contemporary music such as the score written specifically for her by Mauricio Sotelo. She premiered the works “Epitafio” and “Nadie” (No-one) in the Segovia Summer Festivals of 1997, with the Trio Accanto. And with the same repertoire she took part in the Festival de Otoño de Madrid (Madrid Autumn Festival).
She brought to life the character “Candela” in the original version of “El Amor Brujo” (stage version) showed at the Teatro Lara in Madrid for a whole week. ESPERANZA FERNÁNDEZ became the substitute of the mythical Pastora Imperio.
As a cantaora she enjoys international projection. She was chosen by the Fundación Autor (a branch of the Spanish Musician’s Union, SGAE) to represent Spain in Pop Komm’97, held in Cologne, Germany.
That same year she was invited by master Yehudy Menuhin to take part in the “Voices for Peace” concerts along with such important artists as Myriam Makeba or Noa.
On the recording scene, since her participation in Camarón de la Isla’s legendary record “Potro de Rabia y Miel”, she has been sought by numerous artists and producers to collaborate in recordings such as “Los Gitanos Cantan a Lorca” (Volume 2), “Oratorio por Ceferino”, “Cruce de Caminos”.
In October 2001 she presented her first album titled: “Esperanza Fernández”, obtaining excellent critics from the specialized press, and being since that moment one of the best selling records of flamenco.
During April and May 2003 she was on tour (25 Spanish theatres) collaborating as singer in the show “El duende, la molinera y el corregidor”, with music by Manuel de Falla, and in which also participated the dancer Aída Gómez.
2003 has been a fruitful year for Esperanza. Besides her many concerts of traditional flamenco with her quartet, she has performed some more with Jean Marc Padovani and his jazz orchestra; she has performed the two versions of “El Amor Brujo” with orchestra in several Italian cities, as well as “Siete Canciones Españolas” by M. de Falla, in version for Chamber Orchestra.
Also she was invited by Festival Ilhê-de-France, to present for the first time her show ALMADIA at Le Cirque d’hiver in París, in collaboration with musicians from Morocco and with which she is making a tour.In summer 2004 she has participated as singer in the show “El Café de Chinitas” co-production of the Castell de Peralada Festival, International Festival of Santander, Musical Fortnight of San Sebastian, Dance and Music International Festival of Granada and Dance Andalusia Centre of Junta de Andalucia, production made together with “El Sombrero de Tres Picos” to commemorate the birth of Salvador Dalí.