The Stephanie Pedraza Quartet, featuring Stephanie Pedraza (voice and guitar), Andre Stepanian (nylon string and electric guitar), David Stampalolo (percussion), and Lyndon Dewitt (percussion and kit) will rock the Vernon Jazz Club Sept. 8. (Photo submitted)

The Stephanie Pedraza Quartet, featuring Stephanie Pedraza (voice and guitar), Andre Stepanian (nylon string and electric guitar), David Stampalolo (percussion), and Lyndon Dewitt (percussion and kit) will rock the Vernon Jazz Club Sept. 8. (Photo submitted)

Quartet kicks off Vernon Jazz Society season

Stephanie Pedraza Quartet to perform Sept. 8

Candice McMahon

Special to The Morning Star

The Vernon Jazz Club will be starting its new season off with the Stephanie Pedraza Quartet. This will be a night filled with Latin, Pop, Roots, Latin groove and a lot of fun Sept. 8.

Pedraza is a unique combination of singer, songwriter, flamenco dancer and cantaora (traditional flamenco singing) based in Vancouver. Born into a Latin American family and having moved to Colombia at a very early age, she has been constantly immersed in her Latin roots of song and dance.

It was at the age of 19 that she fell in love with flamenco and, ever since, has dedicated her life to mastering the art. In 2003, she moved to Andalucia, Spain after a four-year intensive training period at Vancouver’s Centro Flamenco with Rosario Ancer.

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It was in Sevilla where she trained intensively both in singing and dancing at the world-renowned Fundacion de Arte Flamenco Cristina Heeren. She has studied with some of the most prominent figures in flamenco such as Milagros Menjibar, Fuensanta (La Moneta,) Sonia Miranda, Joaquin Grilo, El Farru, Olga Pericet, Isabel Bayon, Andres Peña and David Hornillo to name a few.

Her original musical compositions are an honest reflection of her rich Latin American background, of her experience growing up in Cali, Colombia, and a perfect blend of traditional Latin rhythms, root, rock, pop, as well as English and Spanish lyrics.

Over the past decade, Pedraza has toured extensively and taught workshops across Canada and internationally in countries such as Mexico, Spain, Colombia, Guatemala and the United States. She released her first CD titled Where I Rest in November 2011 and, since then, has been featured on CBC Radio and Roundhouse Radio. She is currently writing her second album, which will explore Americana, country and roots genres.

In 2014, Pedraza had the opportunity to open for legendary Latin songstress Ana Gabriel at the Estadio Pascual Guerrero in Cali, Colombia with an audience of 25,000 people.

Among her numerous performances, some highlights include Festival de Artes Escenicas del Gran Caribe 2014 in Cartagena, Colombia, Noche Flamenca Colombia Flamenco Tour 2014, Expolatino Calgary, The Harmony Arts Festival, Cultural Blast, numerous shows throughout the years for the Vancouver, Victoria, and Calgary International Flamenco Festivals, Alma Vieja flamenco production in Guatemala and the Vancouver International Film Festival.

The Stephanie Pedraza Quartet will be onstage at the Vernon Jazz Club (3000-31 Street) Sept. 8 at 8 p.m. Doors open at 7:15 p.m. A cash-only bar is on site. Tickets $20 online at www.vernonjazz.com and at Expressions of Time (2901-30 Ave), with a $5 rebate at the gig for VJS members. We are a volunteer-run organization. Please consider joining us.


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