It was 2011, and I was invited to attend an intriguing event called TEDxGreenville. I was somewhat familiar with TED talks online but had never experienced them live. I found myself taking a full dive into the magic that the harmony of ideas, images, and the energy bubbling in the audience created. The slate of speakers was just so perfectly crafted and balanced with the performances. It was like jumping into a pool of awesomeness, and I was hooked into TEDx!
In the afternoon session, a
strikingly beautiful couple appeared on the stage, as if posing for a painting, trying to capture an intimate moment in a land far away from Greenville. José de Guadalupe and his dance partner came alive with the beautiful, passionate movements of Flamenco. The sounds made me forget that I was in Greenville, and I was transported to Spain.
One of the characteristics I love about José is his generous disposition to share his talent to support the arts and worthy causes, and since his TEDx performance, he has given his artistic gift to various organizations. On April 30, 2011, José performed at USC Dance Program’s “Come Dance With Us,” a “FUNdraiser” for scholarships, and a year after his TEDx performance, José treated an audience of 200 people who attended Hispanic Alliance’s annual event, La Fiesta, in Greenville. José opened the night dancing on a stage in the middle of the room surrounded by guests standing feet away from him and his musicians, just like you would see it in a bar in Spain. Most people in the audience had never seen Flamenco live, and José truly created a magic memory on that night.
José taught master classes at USC’s dance department and served as guest faculty for their 2013 Summer Dance Conservatory. He has continued to grace many stages with his beautiful performances across South Carolina, Georgia, and the DC area, from the Roe Cabaret in Greenville to Savannah, GA, where he performed at the Savannah College of Art and Design, and to a sold-out crowd at Rancho Alegre with flamenco artists from Spain and the US. José has performed with renowned international Flamenco performers, such as singer/guitarist Jose Galvez, singer/guitarist Marija Temo, equally acclaimed guitarist Pedro Pimentel, popular flamenco singer Rocío Soto, flamenco dancer Gloria de Jerez, and Flamenco singer and dancer Javier Heredia.
We are extremely lucky to have talent such as José’s in the Upstate. I think he adds to the coolness that characterizes this area. José has been studying and performing for over 20 years, beginning in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain, with Marisol Couchiero. His artistic styling has been greatly influenced by his teacher, Gloria de Jerez, of Jerez de la Frontera, Spain. José continues with teaching flamenco and as a member of the SC Arts Commission’s Roster of Approved Artists for the Arts in Education Program.
Currently José is working on locating a space to create a Flamenco Academy or Studio in Greenville. He will be featured in February’s edition of TOWN magazine, and on February 8th, 2014, he will perform at Celebrating Dance for All Time at the Savannah Lakes Village in McCormick, SC. He is also working on a show for March 7th and 8th at the Warehouse Theatre in Greenville. If you have not had a chance to see him perform, you need to get your ticket and experience the art of José de Guadalupe!
In the meantime, you can enjoy his 2011 TEDx Greenville performance .
With this post, one in a series of past TEDxGreenville presenter updates, we hope to answer questions that we’ve asked a lot and have heard from many of you, So, they shared their idea/performance, what then? What have they been up to? Where are they now?
Adela Mendoza is executive director of Greenville’s Hispanic Alliance and a member of the TEDxGreenville Salons team. She is a native of Veracruz, Mexico.