Fundación Cristina Heeren









The foundation’s most important project has been the inauguration in 1996 of the International School of Flamenco Art, which has as its purpose the teaching of all aspects of Flamenco to a national and international student body. Since its creation the school has welcomed more than 8,000 students, 60 percent of whom have been Spanish and 40 percent foreign.

Our goal has been to offer our students the opportunity of becoming well-rounded professionals, whether performers or teachers, in the specialities of dance, singing, and guitar-playing. The academic programme includes three yearly courses covering three progressive levels, at the end of which graduates will receive a Flamenco Art certificate which carries with it a prestige resulting from our renowned commitment to endow each student with practical expertise in his or her individual field combined with a solid knowledge of the history of Flamenco as well as an in-depth understanding of its musical essence. To the three year programme we have added an optional year of practical apprenticeship, “prácticum”, during which exceptionally talented graduates assist our teachers in class.

In order to work our way towards the official recognition and in accordance with a recently-passed law requiring Flamenco to be introduced into the Andalusian Public School curriculum, we are cooperating with several schools in the Province of Seville.


Acting on the premise that prestigious artists can contribute to the formation of future prestigious artists, right from the start our group of teachers has always included well-known “maestros” such as Milagros Menjíbar, Ursula López ( who later directed the Andalusian Dance Company) and “Naranjito de Triana”, “José el de la Tomasa”, Calixto Sánchez, Paco Taranto, as well as rhythmic styles expert Manuel Soler.

More recently our specialists in dance have included National Dance Award winner Javier Barón, Rafael Campallo, Carmelilla Montoya, Luisa Palicio, Antonio Molina “El Choro”, and Fernando Jiménez, the latter being a permanent staff member together with Luisa Palicio and Beatriz Rivero.

The guest artists who are scheduled to hold dance workshops this year are Paola Comitre, Mercedes de Córdoba, Miguel Angel Heredia, Rafael Campallo, and Antonio Molina “El Choro”, and at the guitar: Juan Campallo.

In guitar our students have learned their trade with Dani Navarro “el Niño de Pura”, Pedro Sierra, Salvador Gutiérrez, Pedro Barragán, and Pedro Sánchez. In the past guitar students have enjoyed workshops offered by Rafael Riqueni, Rafael Rodríguez, and Juan Campallo.

Responsible for teaching singing are Manuel Romero and Lidia Montero. In order to provide variety to our students, we have brought in, on a temporary basis, Esperanza Fernández, Juan José Amador, Jesús Corbacho, and Vicente Gelo. Both Corbacho and Gelo will be teaching again this year.

An important innovation in the teaching of singing has been the introduction of a vocal technique class, headed by Liliana Aracil.

Methods of communication between performers of the three specialities are taught by Patrcia Lozano in her Tablao class.

In order to expose our dance students to additional visions of a specific Flamenco speciality, recently we have called upon Pastora Galván, Eva “La Yerbabuena”, María Moreno, and Miguel Angel Heredia to teach short dance courses. This year Paola Comitre, Miguel Angel Heredia, Rafael Campallo, and Antonio Molina “El Choro” will be with us for short periods.

In guitar, Rafael Riqueni, Rafael Rodríguez, and Juan Campallo have inspired the students through their workshops. This year we are expecting Juan Campallo to return to share his expertise in dance accompaniment with the advanced guitar level students.


Numerous alumni are successful in their professional careers, some of whom received public recognition by winning important contests such as the Lámpara Minera at La Unión ( in singing), the Desplante Minero at La Unión ( in dance), the Bordón Minero at La Unión (guitar), the Revelation Prize of the Bienal of Seville ( singing), the Revelation Prize of The Festival of Jerez (dance), and the National Contest of Córdoba.

Included in this group are singers Rocío Bazán, Celia Romero, Laura Vital, María José Pérez, Jeromo Segura; dancers Lucía Alvarez “La Piñona”, Florencia O’ Ryan, Luisa Palicio, Alberto Sellés, Antonio Molina “El Choro”, El Perrete, and Juan Tomás de la Molía, as well as guitar players Juan José Rodríguez “ el Niño Brenes” and Francisco Moncayo “Gastor de Paco”. Others like Rocío Márquez, Argentina, Manuel Lombo and Jesús Corbacho are frequently seen performing on national and international stages.

Then, there are those who came out of our school and who chose to develop careers outside the world of Flamenco like India Martínez, Yasmin Levy, and Farah Siraj and José Luis Pérez-Vera.


The Flamenco Art School is determined to offer its students a combination of technical development and cultural knowledge.

The creation of a method of teaching a subject as complex as Flamenco, an artform which in the past has been handed down through generations in an informal and fragmented manner, has been an extremely difficult task that demanded considerable study. Since 1996 the academic programme has evolved steadily as specific needs became apparent. The result resembles a university course that includes theory, in the form of history as well as the study of musical content, and practice in one of the three specialities (dance, singing, and guitar.)

The syllabus stresses the need for the three teams of students to work together, in anticipation of their future as professionals. Over a three year period, guitar-players must acquire an agile technique plus the knowledge of accompaniment of dance and singing. Singing students must learn solo singing as well as singing as accompaniment to dance. And dancers must achieve technical proficiency, involving footwork and body movement, as well as a knowledge of choreography.

Communication between performers of all three specialities is a vital aspect of our academic programme. This subject is taught in classes involving students from all three specialities.

The school bases its didactic philosophy on the principles of classical Flamenco. In their theory class students of all three specialities will learn to listen to and to watch the contributions of artists from previous generations who formed Flamenco’s rich identity. Innovation has taken place throughout the history of Flamenco thanks to inspired individual artists who developed their creativity within the strict framework of Flamenco tradition. The syllabus includes historical, anthropological, literary, and musical information vital to the understanding of all the peculiarities of Flamenco. Students will leave us having learned every style that exists within the rich fabric of Flamenco, enabling them to go about their work as confident and knowledgeable professionals.

Classical structures and styles are the basis of our academic programme. Although we understand the desire of some of our graduates to explore other forms of music and dance, fusions and extra-flamenco adaptations, however respectable and attractive, will not be encouraged at the school.



Rocío Bazán: 2002 María José Pérez (2015)

Laura Vital: 2000 Jeromo Segura (2013)

Celía Romero (2011)


Rocío Márquez (2008)

Luisa Palicio: 2006 Gema Jiménez (2005)


Alberto Sellés: 2014 Juan Jose Rodríguez “Niño Brenes”: 2006

Luisa Palicio: 2015 Francisco Moncayo “Gastor de Paco”: 2010

Antonio Molina “El Choro”: 2016

Florencia O’ Ryan: 2021


Lucía Alvárez “La Piñona” 2011


Florencia o’ Ryan: 2019

El Perrete: 2019

Juan Tomás de la Molía: 2022


Of the 8,000 Spanish and Foreign students who have benefitted from our school’s programme over the last 25 years, more than 10% have received scholarships from the Fundación. Nearly 500 of these have been Andalusian. The U.S. non-profit American Friends of Flamenco awards one scholarship per year to a North American student. Our most outstanding benefactor is the company ACCIONA, thanks to whom the school has been able to hold yearly contests, the Concursos Talento Flamenco, for which this generous organisation donates the prizes plus several scholarships. Also since 2019 talented students have received scholarships from the TreadRight Foundation, from Fundación Cajasol, and from Fundación Alalá. Our foundation has welcomed international students whose studies have been supported by Erasmus+ from Europe, Fulbright USA, Conaculta from Mexico, the Maruwa Foundation from Japan, or, in the case of spaniards, the Society for Artists and Performers ( AIE) from Spain.


The Cristina Heeren Foundation cooperates with various social and educational organisations which have expressed their gratitude for our contribution in various ways.

We should also mention the scholarships awarded by the foundation itself throughout our existence to talented underpriviledged young people who are now professionals of the Flamenco world. In 2017 the school welcomed José Galán’s Taller Flamenco Inclusivo, a class designed for handicapped people.

With this spirit of social conscience our school incorporates children who show an interest in Flamenco from the Fundación Alalá and other organisations to its classes.

We at the foundation are proud to have cooperated in a ground-breaking project designed by the public high school Carmen Laffón of the near-by town of San José de la Rinconada, —that of the creation of a degree of Performing Arts, which includes Flamenco Studies as an option. This academic novelty won the prize Premio Flamenco en el Aula of 2018. In 2021 our school joined an experimental project created by the high school of the town of Mairena del Alcor that offers Flamenco as a subject. Now that the Andalusian Parliament has passed a law requiring that a basic knowledge of Flamenco be taught in High School classes, we hope to assist their teachers in their endeavour.


The Fundación Cristina Heeren de Arte Flamenco has been in existence for more than 25 years. Many institutions have expressed their recognition of Cristina Heeren’s relentless dedication to the preservation, promotion, and teaching of Flamenco. The Ministry of Culture has awarded the founder the Orden de Alfonso X el Sabio; the Junta de Andalucía has honoured her with the prize Flamenco en el Aula, and the City Hall has given her the Medal of Seville in 2018. The foundation has also received an award from the Diputación de Sevilla. More recently Cristina Heeren was invited to join the Real Academia de Bellas Artes Santa Isabel de Hungría as the member representing the city of New York. At the ceremony Cristina read her speech “ El Flamenco es un Arte Universal”, a title which intended to prove that Flamenco is indeed an art-form.


The Fundación Cristina Heeren de Arte Flamenco started its activities in 1996 in a XVIIth century house in the well-known Barrio de Santa Cruz, where it was based for ten years. Then the school moved to the neighbourhood of Heliópolis. But there again the student body grew out of the available space, and it became necessary to acquire another studio to house the dance classes, an unsatisfactory solution considering the fact that at an early stage of apprenticeship, students from all three specialities need to work together. This uncomfortable situation led to the definitive move to a suitable building.

In 2016 we established our headquarters in Triana, a neighbourhood which has played a vital part in the development of Flamenco. The Fundación Cristina Heeren is now located at number 76 of Calle Pureza. As our president explains, “ to gather all the students under one roof was an absolute necessity since our teaching method stresses the importance of team work.”

Our base consists of an area of 1,500 square metres, a building designed by Balbontín Arquitectos to our specifications. It contains 9 classrooms differing in size and equipment, the reception area leading to a spacious traditional “patio”, offices, cloakrooms, a recording studio, a small patio, and two terraces. The centre of the building houses a theatre, also used as a classroom, which seats 130 spectators.

Every evening professional Flamenco artists perform in our Teatro Flamenco Triana.


According to the magazine Lonely Planet, ours is the largest educational centre specialising in Flamenco in the world.

From its new headquarters in Triana the foundation participates Seville’s cultural and social life. In our theatre the documentary “Belmonte” was shown in the context of the Cinema Festival, and the press conference announcing the the Festival de las Minas of La Unión was held there, too; so was a meeting organised by the U.S. Ambassador to meet American residents in Sevilla. Several Flamenco artists such as Esperanza Fernández, María José Pérez, and Manuel Lombo have presented their records there. The foundation has welcomed famous visitors like Sir Norman Foster, Dua Lipa, Pasión Vega, Noa, Tomatito, Arcángel, Estrella Morente, and Dorantes, as well as the Director of the Sevilla Symphony Orchestra and the Directors of various Flamenco Festivals.

The foundation has hosted events that were attended by representatives of several branches of the Spanish government and by important personalities of the business world. Also several interviews by national and international publications have been held in our headquarters.

Teatro Flamenco Triana

Cristina Heeren fulfilled one of her dreams when she created a Flamenco theatre. Having dedicated over 25 years to the promotion and the teaching of an art-form that has been designated a World Heritage by UNESCO, Cristina has finally opened her own theatre to the public. The Teatro Flamenco Triana is the first theatre in Seville to exclusively hold Flamenco performances in the form of dance, guitar-playing, and singing, on a daily basis. Soon after it opened, the theatre positioned itself in first place at Tripadvisor. Its 130 comfortable seats, its unique decor reminiscent of the year 1929, its first class technical installations, plus the exceptional quality of the performances by professional artists make it one of Seville’s favourite entertainment venues. Tickets are for sale on the website


Thanks to a donation from you, the Fundación Cristina Heeren would be able to fulfill its original objectives: the teaching, the consevation, and the promotion of Flamenco in Andalusia, in Spain, and in the rest of the world.

We would receive your donation with our upmost gratitude, no matter how modest your contribution.

With your help, you will be offering talented young people with limited economic conditions an opportunity to pursue their dream of eventually entering the professional world of Flamenco.

In the case of U.S. contributors, donations should be sent to American Friends of Flamenco, a charity based in New York. These contributions, which are tax-deductible, will fund our scholarship programme for American students.