The Princess of Asturias praises the flamenco art of Carmen Linares and María Pagés

The singer Carmen Linares and the choreographer María Pagés were awarded in Spain with the Princess of Asturias Award for the Arts, for being “part of the genealogy of contemporary flamenco”, according to the jury’s decision released this Thursday.

They are “two of the most important flamenco figures of recent decades”, who “have known how to modernize and adapt their essence to the contemporary world, elevating it, even more so, to the category of universal art”, stated a note from Press of the Princess of Asturias Foundation.

This award, the first of eight that will be awarded weekly to outstanding individuals or institutions in various fields worldwide, was announced in Oviedo (northern Spain).

Thanks to the improvement in the health situation in Spain due to the high vaccination rate, the jury met again in person, after two years in which it had to do so virtually.

According to the jury, Linares and Pagés “have opened paths of repercussion not only artistically but also socially and have become an example of work, talent and dedication for future generations”.

Carmen Linares, born as Carmen Pacheco in 1951 in Linares (Andalusia, south), is considered one of the most important voices in flamenco singing.

During her long career, she has set milestones such as being the first flamenco singer to perform at Lincoln Center in New York, while she has offered shows in theaters in Buenos Aires, Sydney, Paris and London.

An artist who has won numerous awards both in Spain and internationally, she is still active, currently on tour to celebrate her more than four decades on stage.

“I am very happy for myself and for flamenco art, in capital letters, which is what I love most and what I have given my life to,” Carmen Linares reacted in a statement.

On her side, María Pagés, born in 1963 in Seville (also Andalusia), has run her own company since 1990, with which she has produced a multitude of works with which she has renewed “the forms of flamenco dance through the mixture of traditional and modernity”, according to the Princess of Asturias Foundation.

In addition to taking his shows around the world, he has shared the stage with outstanding dancers such as the Russian Mijaíl Baryshnikov or the Spanish Ángel Corella.

The Princess of Asturias also recognized the solidarity work of Pagés, who through his association Artedea acted, for example, in Fukushima shortly after the 2011 earthquake.

In 2021, the Arts trophy went to the Serbian Marina Abramovic, considered an icon of ‘performance’, for works such as “The Artist is Present”, in which she sat for more than 700 hours at the Moma in New York, or “Balkan Baroque”, in which he washed animal bones for days in mourning for the Balkan war.

In this section, characters from the seventh art such as Woody Allen, Martin Scorsese and Pedro Almodóvar, architects such as Óscar Niemeyer, Frank Gehry and Santiago Calatrava and musicians such as Ennio Morricone, Paco de Lucía and Bob Dylan, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, have been honored in the past. .

This year, Linares and Pagés were selected from among 43 candidates from 19 countries.

The Arts Prize inaugurated the cycle of the international Princess of Asturias Awards, considered the most prestigious in the Ibero-American world.

There are eight in total, which the Princess of Asturias Foundation will award weekly during May and June to world-renowned people or institutions in fields ranging from scientific research to sports, including international cooperation and the social sciences.

These prizes, instituted in 1981, are endowed with 50,000 euros (about 53,000 dollars) and a sculpture created by the late Catalan artist Joan Miró.

The awards, which take their name from the title of the heiress to the throne of the Spanish Crown, Princess Leonor, are presented by the King and Queen in October at a ceremony in Oviedo, the capital of Asturias.

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The Princess of Asturias praises the flamenco art of Carmen Linares and María Pagés