FORT LAUDERDALE – In conjunction with PBS-TV affiliate WPBT, music star Benise and his Emmy-Award winning Nights of Fire cast return to the Au-Rene Theater at the Broward Center for the Performing Arts with The Spanish Guitar on Friday, November 5 at 8 p.m. as part of its 45-city tour, which coincides with the PBS pledge special and follows a critically-acclaimed performance on “Dancing With The Stars.”
The Latin equivalent of such beloved theatrical music and dance spectacles as Riverdance and Celtic Women, The Spanish Guitar integrates new songs and an ever-changing multi-media stage set with actual footage of Benise in his voyage across the globe through the cobblestone streets of Old Havana, an Arabian Desert, the romantic canals of Venice, the oldest bullring in Spain, a Paris café and a 2,000 year-old sacred Buddhist temple in India. This epic tale was filmed over three years and across 10 countries.
The show features Benise’s guitar as protagonist as it becomes the keeper of the stories of glory and tragedy through times and worlds gone by. A story of lost love and the gypsy guitar-maker whose mysterious workings create a guitar that can transport Benise to the far ends of the world. Through time on a quest for passion, the enchanted Spanish Guitar becomes a treasure chest of inspiration, propelling Benise into his role as troubadour for the ages.
Benise holds his audiences captive as exotic drums, Gypsy violin, Flamenco dancers, Brazilian Samba dancers and percussionists, African tribal drummers and Havana horns work together to create an unforgettable experience.
The Spanish Guitar is directed by Raj Kapoor (Josh Groban, American Idol, Dancing With The Stars and Britney Spears) and choreographed by Brazilian-born and Emmy-nominated Alex Magno (Madonna, Yanni, Pussycat Dolls, Ballet Hispanico) with lighting design by Bud Horowitz (Bette Midler, Natalie Cole, Yanni). Benise’s band is made up of such world-class musicians as Karen Briggs (Yanni); Walter Rodrigez (Stomp, Yanni); and internationally-renowned Cuban drummer and percussionist Daniel de los Reyes, who has worked with Don Henley, Sting, The Killers, Sheryl Crow, Jennifer Lopez, Ricky Martin, Shakira, Lionel Richie and many others. The Gitanas, Benise’s female dancers in The Spanish Guitar, were carefully handpicked from a global pool of some of the most brilliantly diverse talent to be found including traditional Flamenco dancers, Broadway dancers, and featured soloists from Madonna, Celine Dion and Ricky Martin. Breathtaking couture fashion and the unparalleled beauty of the dancers themselves complement the beautiful Spanish dancing.
Accompanying the tour is the release of The Spanish Guitar CD and DVD via Rosanegra Music and PBS video. Guest artists featured in filming of The Spanish Guitar include smooth jazz icon Dave Koz; from her own PBS special, Giorgia Fumanti singing Evermore (“The Wedding Song”); American Idol’s Kimberly Locke with the Los Angeles Gospel choir singing “Spanish Guitar;” and a Parisian waltz by Dancing With The Stars couple Nick Kosovich and Lena Bacheva.
The Spanish Guitar is Benise’s eighth CD, third DVD and second PBS special (he won an Emmy for his first, Nights Of Fire).
A former street musician, Benise began composing original works with powerfully emotional arrangements that are both wild and refined, producing a sound that is as edgy and exotic as it is romantic and sensual. Benise redefined the ordinary and started to promote his own concerts, eventually selling-out 2000-seat theaters with shows that become inspiring experiences.
Tickets are $29.50, $39.50, $49.50 and $59.50 and are available through the Broward Center’s box office at (954) 462-0222 or www.BrowardCenter.org. The Broward Center for the Performing Arts is located in the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District at 201 SW Fifth Avenue in Fort Lauderdale.
Mangos Restaurant & Lounge, Marriott Harbor Beach Resort & Spa, Mercedes-Benz, TAM Airlines, Sun-Sentinel and Comcast are proud sponsors of the Broward Center. All dates, programs and artists are subject to change.
About Broward Center for the Performing Arts
The Broward Center for the Performing Arts, now in its 20th anniversary year, is one of America’s premier performing arts venues. Presenting more than 700 performances each year to more than 700,000 patrons, the Center showcases a wide range of exciting cultural programming and events, and offers one of the largest arts-in-education programs in the United States, serving more than 150,000 students annually. In 2007, the Broward Center was named the Cultural Embassy of Broward County in recognition of its success in linking cultural activity with the region’s economic development. The Broward Performing Arts Foundation, Inc. receives and maintains funds to sustain, develop, and secure the future of the Broward Center. The Broward Performing Arts Center is located in the Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment District at 201 SW Fifth Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. For more information, visit www.BrowardCenter.org.
The Riverwalk Arts & Entertainment Consortium is a cultural partnership between the Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Museum of Art | Fort Lauderdale, Florida Grand Opera, Fort Lauderdale Historical Society and the Historic Stranahan House Museum. It is supported by the Broward County Board of County Commissioners as recommended by the Broward Cultural Council and the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau.