Stella Arauzo

Artistic Director
Stella Arauzo, Directora artística

She was born in Madrid, where she began studying dance under the teacher Mariemma, making her professional debut with Mariemma’s company at the age of 13, later dancing with the ballets of Maria Rosa and Rafael Aguilar. She joined the Antonio Gades Company at age 17, and the teacher gave her the role of “mother” in Bodas de Sangre. Starting in 1988 she played the starring role in Antonio Gades’ Carmen, replacing Cristina Hoyos in a role that matches her strong temperament and dramatic intensity perfectly. She played Candela, the leading role in Gades’ Fuego, at the Théâtre du Châtelet in 1989. She also danced with Rafael Aguilar Company in the ballet Rango before returning to the Antonio Gades Company in 1994 to reincarnate the role of Carmen, also performing in the production of Fuenteovejuna. In recent years she has worked with the dancers Granada Manolete and Juan Andrés Maya. She has staged choreographies like Flamenco libre and El Amor Brujo in Sweden and participated in the movie Callas forever, under the direction of Franco Zeffirelli. She has also toured Europe with the guitarist Paco Peña and will be perform at the Arena di Verona with Camborio’s company. She worked as an assistant to Mario Maya in 2002, starting a teaching career that she would further develop at the Carmen de las Cuevas school in Granada, where she taught master classes.

She returned to the stage in 2004, combining performances at the tablao Rincón de Chinitas in Marbella with the artistic direction for the production of Juan Andrés Maya’s La Pasión. The Antonio Gades Foundation booked her for the artistic direction of the Antonio Gades Company in 2004, and she once again played the role of Carmen with the company. Under her leadership the company has restaged productions like Carmen, Bodas de sangre, Suite Flamenca and Fuenteovejuna. In 2011 she performed the choreography for the Spanish premiere of the opera Ainadamar with the Antonio Gades Company and performed the opera with resounding success at the Philadelphia Opera in February of that same year. She also commemorated the 10th anniversary of the death of Antonio Gades that same year, recovering one of the artist’s iconic ballets, Fuego, never staged before in Spain and which premiered at the Teatro de la Zarzuela in Madrid.

This in addition to the courses, workshops and lectures which, organized by the Antonio Gades Foundation in collaboration with other organizations in the world of dance, she teaches both in Spain and abroad.

Her loyalty to and knowledge of Gades’ artistic philosophy have returned the Company to the elite ranks of Spanish dance.