Fernando Barros Lirola was born in Motril (Granada) Spain in 1952 and focused his studies on geology at the University of Granada. Since 1980 he has performed in concerts and at Andalusian flamenco festivals around the world. He is a singer (cantaor), composer, historian, writer and innovator specializing in flamenco music. With emphasis on bringing voice to the poets and writers of Spain, Fernando composes and sings the works of Miguel De Cervantes, Federico Garcia Lorca, Antonio Machado, Juan Ramon Jimenez, and Miguel Hernandez. Additionally, he specializes in interpreting the texts of several anonymous medieval and Sephardic poets.
Fernando is the author, with Sandra González, of the theatrical text, “Que venga, que venga flamenco!” His book, “Flamenco en las Aulas”, is to be used in future college courses on flamenco. He is writing a second book, which is currently being translated and will be available in English by the fall of 2016. His contributions to various periodicals is extensive, and he lectures in conjunction with teaching master classes on the intricacies unique to flamenco.
As an invited member of the International Dance Council of UNESCO, Fernando is an active participant in the preservation of dance around the world, attending the UNESCO congress in Miami in 2015. He attended the First International Congress held by the Andalusian Institute of Flamenco. As Director of the First International Convening of “Motril Flamenco” in 2013, his responsibilities included hosting delegations from other cities in the region. Additionally, at the initial gathering of International Folk Music Analysis, he participated in “Experience in Teaching Flamenco”, as well as offering workshops on his theories presented in his book, “Flamenco in the Classroom.” Fernando also has a solid body of work available on social media sites and appreciates its accessibility to peoples around the world.
While in New Mexico as an artist in residence in 2014, Fernando conducted master classes in Denver and Boulder, CO, and at the University of New Mexico under the aegis of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese. He performed in venues in Santa Fe, Taos, Albuquerque and Boulder and led workshops at elementary and secondary schools in Santa Fe.
Fernando is on the leading edge of integrating the tradition of flamenco with his unique understanding of its cadences and rhythms, as well as the “melody” inherent in the poetry of his countrymen. His innovations include combining traditional melodies with harmonies unique to the flavors and textures of verse. Using his voice as an instrument of power and persuasion, he guides the audience in experiencing emotional depths tuned to life’s mysteries, joys, challenges and triumphs.
Fernando’s work can be viewed on various social media sites. He is available to conduct classes, design curriculum, perform, and participate in panel discussions on the fascinating history of flamenco as it has evolved over the centuries.