By Omar Naré
La Provence Presse called Manuel Gutierrez “a rising star in Flamenco dance.” Flamenco Magazine said “He evokes great artistic maturity… his technique, his stage presence, his collaborations and all his qualities are characteristic of the greatest Flamenco dancers.” Truly, Manuel Gutierrez is poised and ready to dance on the world’s stage. Unafraid to challenge tradition, he is one of the few “bailaores” today that has evolved with the times while maintaining the respect of the purists.
Manuel Gutierrez Cabello was born in Montpellier, France and from a young age showed a talent for dance. By age 8, he had won his first Flamenco award. Over time, he began to develop his unique style under the direction of Lita Peiro, José Galván and later with Joaquin Grilo and Javier Latorre. By age 20, Gutierrez began producing works and dancing across Europe with legendary artists including Duquende, Chicuelo, Juan Carmona, Diego del Morao and Chispa Negra. He also began to collaborate with top French choreographers Redha, Marjorie Ascione, and Gerome Zerbie.
In 2008, French socialite Karen Ruimy invited Manuel to choreograph her hit production “Flamenco Flamen’ka” which sold out the Lyric Theatre in London and and ran for 5 years in Great Britain and France. Guiterrez’s fame as a choreographer and producer was growing. The Telegraph in London called his work “Fiery.” Danse Magazine nicknamed him, “The Young flamenco Prince.” Figarro Newspaper raved “The dance is strong, voluptuous, and spectacular… a profound type of flamenco and incredibly explosive.” Manuel was invited to teach at the top studios in Europe including L’Opéra de Paris which added credibility and respect to his artistic vision.
In 2009, Manuel produced new works for the actress and philanthropist Eva Longoria (Desperate Housewives) for the “Par Coeur Gala” benefiting the Make-A-Wish Foundation and Eva’s Heroes. Impressed with his work ethic, Longoria invited Gutierrez in 2010 to become the artistic director for her charity event “The Global Gift Gala.” Manuel continues to work alongside Longoria and has produced events in Los Angeles, London, Paris, Cannes and Marbella as of 2013.
It is important to note that during this time, Manuel continued to dance and choreograph around the world with artists like Louis Winsberg, Souad Massi, Eric fernandez and San Francisco-based dance company “Caminos Flamencos.” In 2012, he helped create Juncal Street with Fanny Ara and his choreography was nominated for an Isadora Duncan Dance Award. Recently, Gutierrez began working with world-famous, Flamenco pianist Diego Amador and they are currently planning a new work to be released in 2014. Despite all these achievements, Manuel emphasizes that his greatest triumph to date was the birth of his first child “Manuelito” in 2010.
Today, Manuel Gutierrez is producing a new work in the United States. Currently in pre-production, “KOMPAZ” is the exploration of Flamenco rhythm outside of traditional boundaries. Manuel explains “Rhythm is life. There is rhythm in the way a person talks, how he eats, what he thinks, and truly, in how he dances. I want to explore these rhythms through the eyes and ears of Flamenco. But, also, I am interested in showing modern life and modern sounds. When does the rhythm of Flamenco stop being Flamenco? What does purity mean? How far can I take this art form? This is what I want to discover in my show.” To help with the process, Gutierrez has assembled a group of musicians and dancers from different genres and different parts of the world, including world-famous percussionist Salar Nader and award winning French stage director Marjorie Ascione. It is this mix of ideas and tastes that will help define KOMPAZ and make it unforgettable.
After 20 years, words cannot entirely capture Manuel Gutierrez’s journey. Talent, creativity, and natural instinct are all combined in one man and his style is instantly recognizable. This is precisely why we can be sure that this outstanding dancer, choreographer, and producer will never stop surprising us.
Lorca- Pradal “Romancero Gitano”
Maurane “Nougaro ou l’espoire d’un Homme”
Agathe Clery “Bande original du film”
Raphael Fays “mi camino en el flamenco”
Louis Winsberg “Marseille Marseille”
Antonio El Titi “disfruto flamenco”
Kayan by Maryam Nafaji
Kumpania by Katina Dunn