Sara Baras, as she is best-known, is arguably the leading female flamenco dancer of the present generation. She combines sublime and apparently effortless traditional flamenco with modern fusions, imaginative arrangements and innovative costume design.
Sara started her career in flamenco as a child, learning at her mother’s dance school in Cádiz. She danced at various festivals in Spain and at the age of 24 joined the Manuel Morao dance company, performing in Spain and France. As her craft developed she became a prestigious guest dancer in many international performances, including New York in 1992. In 1993 she won the award of the most outstanding Flamenco artist of the year.
In 1997 Sara formed her own company, which consisted of 8 dancers and 7 musicians. Their first performance was as the closing act at the Cante de las Minas in La Unión. The company’s first full production “Sensaciones”, an exploration of the various types of flamenco, was first performed in Murcia the following year. The company explored similar themes in two subsequent productions named “Sabores” and “Sueños”. Her style has certain masculine traits with an emphasis on rapid footwork whilst her upper body seems to float.
Sara and her company have worked alongside many celebrity artists all over the world. In 2006 she joined forces with tenor Josep Carreras, directing and choreographing a show to celebrate the works of the Spanish composers Manuel de Falla, Albéniz and Turina and the poet García Lorca, In 2007 she produced her own version of the opera Carmen with the collaboration of many artists including the guitarist Paco de Lucía.
One of Sara’s distinguishing features is her innovative costume design, choosing simple lines in soft fabrics which accentuate her dancers’ body shape. She has worked with fashion designer Amaya Arguaga when her dance company presented part of her collection in London Fashion Week. Sara has also modeled in Lisbon and Madrid fashion shows.
In 2010 Sara took a three year break from dancing to give birth and dedicate time to her son José. Although she was nervous at first about her return to the stage she found that her experience of motherhood had in fact enriched what she was able to offer emotionally on stage.
After a recent performance at London’s Sadler’s Wells Theatre the Telegraph critic stated that “Sara Baras is one of the performers you just can’t take your eyes off”: