The Kennedy Center

Iberia Festival Iberian Suite: global arts remix

March 3–24, 2015

About the Festival

Continuing the Kennedy Center's exploration of international arts, Iberian Suite: global arts remix is a major festival highlighting the many cultures that comprise the Portuguese- and Spanish-speaking peoples—the impact they've had throughout the world, and the vast influences they've embraced from other cultures. Watch a video overview.

The festival, curated by Alicia Adams, Vice President of International Programming and Dance, includes dozens of performances by some of the world's best contemporary music, dance, and theater artists, many who are making their U.S. or D.C. debuts. Visual arts are highlighted in exhibitions and installations around the building, and additional events focus on literature, film, cuisine, and more.

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Curator Notes

From Alicia Adams
Vice President, International Programming and Dance
Festival Curator

The title of this festival, Iberian Suite, echoes the suite of exquisite piano compositions by acclaimed Spanish composer Isaac Albéniz, Iberia. Albéniz's music richly reflects the colors and textures of the Iberian Peninsula, and the aesthetics and spirit of its people. The Peninsula was once a grand crossroads of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. For more than a millennium, it was a vibrant melting pot of people, culture, and religions. When Spanish and Portuguese explorers and conquistadors set sail in the 15th century, the resulting encounters transformed the world. Global arts remix seeks to capture a sense of the reach of those historic voyages and the extraordinary mingling of arts and cultures they engendered. This festival offers you a chance to experience the culmination of hundreds of years of cultural history.

Iberian Suite will highlight the magnificent art of the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking people, their impact around the world, and the global influences they came to embrace.

The human history is both inspiring and sobering—marked by war and conquest, triumph and tragedy. But ultimately, what has endured is an outpouring of creativity and intelligence that is civilization's greatest gift. Iberia's legacy, enriched by its many cultures and evolved over hundreds of years, has brought us a rich bounty. It is that sense of artistic exuberance that we seek to celebrate in this festival. 

Iberian Suite will explore the visual arts in works big and small, old and new, from great architectural design to the exquisite beauty of ceramics. But it will also revel in the sounds of fado, the passionate dance of flamenco and tango, the exciting rhythms of bossa nova and salsa, the words of some of the world's greatest writers, and theatrical performances by extraordinarily talented actors. It promises to be a feast for eye, ear, and the intellect; a colorful pageant that honors the many people and cultures touched by Iberia.

Come join us for a grand voyage!

Alicia Adams signature

Festival Credits

The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts

David M. Rubenstein
Deborah F. Rutter

Festival Credits

Vice President, International Programming and Dance
Festival Curator
Alicia Adams

Director, International Programming
Festival Co-Curator and Manager
Gilda Almeida

Exhibition and Installations Design
Studio Adrien Gardère
Adrien Gardère
Mathieu Muin

Picasso Ceramist and the Mediterranean
Joséphine Matamoros and Bruno Gaudichon
Management in France
Anagraphis: Thierry Angles, Project Chief; Marie Barral, Assistant
Marielle Magliozzi - Administrative Coordination
Picasso Exhibition Management
Gilda Almeida
Administrative Coordination
Annette Dumas
Studio Adrien Gardère

Installations Production
Mickey Berra, Vice President
Glenn Turner, Head of Production Operation

Installations Graphic Design
Kokoro & Moi
Studio Adrien Gardère

So Blue So White
Fashions Centuries in the Making
Karen Taylor

Literature Series Curator
Marie Arana

Festival Consultants
Ana Miranda, Arte Institute
Marta Casals Istomin
Fredrica Jarcho
Elcior Santana
Osama Abi-Mershed, Georgetown University Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
Susan Douglass, Georgetown University Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
Pedro Cardim, New University of Lisbon
Tempest Entertainment

Festival Opening Performance
Robert Pullen, NOUVEAU productions

Festival Assistants
Annette Dumas, Sara Ross, Jeanne Sobel, Kathi Reynolds

Support Staff
Gintare Everett, Kate Oberdorfer, Jecamiah Ybanez
Volunteer: Debra Simon

Artistic Collaboration with
Arte Institute
Inter-American Development Bank Cultural Center
Embassy of Japan and the National Cherry Blossom Festival
Embassy of Mexico and its Cultural Institute
Embassy of Portugal
Embassy of Spain, Spain Arts and Culture
Georgetown University Center for Contemporary Arab Studies
Library of Congress
New University of Lisbon
The Etxepare Basque Institute
World Bank Group

Special thanks to the Kennedy Center staff and volunteers involved in the realization of this festival.