Juan Serrano

   Dr. Juan Serrano is a flamenco guitarist who has played concerts and made recordings throughout the world. He has devoted much of his life to giving concerts and teaching flamenco guitar in the United States.

   Serrano was born in Córdoba, Spain in 1935. At the age of 9, he studied guitar with his Spanish Guitar Talent Artist Juan Serranofather, Antonio del Lunar, a professional guitarist. Serrano made his professional debut at age 13, and soon earned a reputation throughout Spain and Europe as a gifted musician. He performed and recorded with flamenco musical, dance, and theatrical companies. At this time Serrano also started his solo career. His home town of Córdoba was so proud of his accomplishments that they replaced the bell in the town clock with recordings of his guitar playing.

   In 1961 Serrano accepted an invitation to come to America and perform on the Ed Sullivan Show. The success of this performance led to numerous solo flamenco guitar concerts and more TV appearances, then a recording contract with Elektra Records, who released his US debut album "Ole, la mano!" in 1962. The New York Times said Serrano had "ten dexterous fingers that often sound like twenty... a breathtaking technician who can wring rhythmic dance fury out of fandangos and zapateados. He is a lyric sentamentalist, who can make the strings cry."[1] Serrano made the US his home, where he achieved renown as an instructor. In Feb. 1968 he was the featured cover-photo artist for Guitar Player magazine.

   He developed the guitar program at California State University and headed the guitar department until his retirement. In addition to his teaching duties, Serrano is much sought after as a performer, for master classes and as a guest lecturer on the history of Flamenco. Serrano is the only flamenco guitarist in the world with a doctorate in humane letters and a tenured faculty position at a major university.

   Córdoba also awarded Serrano the "Potro de Oro". This prestigious honor is awarded once Check out the Juan Serrano MySpace page.every ten years; Serrano and Paco Peña are the only guitarists ever to be so honored. Serrano received the Page One Ball from the Newspaper Guild of New York for his outstanding performances. He was also awarded the Medalla de Oro from the Spanish Academy of Fine Arts, the Catedra de Flamencologia from Jerez, Spain, and an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from Fairfield University in Fairfield, Connecticut. The city of Fresno has bestowed on Serrano the "Fabulous Fresnan" and "Horizon" awards.

 

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