The Department of Music begins its celebration of California State University, Fresno’s 100th year at 8 p.m. Sept. 2 with “A Double Shot of Flamenco,” featuring professor and guitar virtuoso Dr. Corey Whitehead and internationally acclaimed singer Jesús Montoya.
Whitehead will open the program, and then will be joined Flamencos de Fresno (Alberto Marques, Juan Moyoli, John Martin III and Frank Giordano) and Montoya. After intermission, the Jesús Montoya Company will perform music and dance accompanied by Whitehead and José Tanaka.
Whitehead is the only flamenco guitarist chosen twice by the legendary flamenco guitar master Manolo Sanlúcar to receive a scholarship sponsored by Andalusia’s development agency. He is the only guitarist from the United States ever selected for the honor. He has performed at the flamenco festival held in Córdoba, the Andalusian capital in southern Spain.
Whitehead studied with Cordoba-born guitarist Juan Serrano, a Fresno State professor emeritus of music, and with Sanlúcar, Manolo Franco, José Antonio Rodríguez, Juan Carlos Romero and Paco Serrano. He was appointed in 2006 as Juan Serrano’s replacement at Fresno State. Recently he and Javier Alcantara-Rojas translation Sanlúcar’s “Sobre la guitarra flamenca: Teoría y sistema” into English.
Montoya, a native of Seville, began his career as a flamenco singer, guitar player and dancer as a child and was touring worldwide by the time he was 13 as “El Rey del Fandango.”
He is the artistic director of his flamenco performance company and was featured as the voice of Riuz Alonzo in the production and recording of “Ainadamar (Fountain of Tears),” a 2007 double-Grammy winner in Classical Contemporary Composition and Best Opera.
“A Double Shot of Flamenco” will be performed at the Concert Hall in the Fresno State Music Building. Tickets – $15, general; $10, seniors, students – are available online at Vendini.com