El Mati, winner of the ‘Lámpara Minera’ 2019 award
This cantaor from Barcelona also won the Mineras first prize and the 3rd Group of ‘Cantes Bajo Andaluces’. The Bordón Minero and the Desplante Femenino were awarded to José Fermín Fernández, from Granada, and Olga Llorente, from Barcelona. The cantaor El Perrete, from Badajoz, won in two other groups of cante. The Filón prize was awarded to Alejandro Solano
Matías López Expósito El Mati, from Barcelona, has been the winner of the Lámpara Minera 2019 award in the 59th edition of the Festival del Cante de Las Minas de La Unión, in Murcia. According to the press release published by the Festival, the jury awarded its biggest prize of 16,000 euros «for his great command and knowledge of the cantes mineros and for his proven competence in other styles of flamenco». This cantaor from Barcelona also won the Mineras first prize of 5,000 euros, and the 3rd Group of Cantes Bajo Andaluces, worth the same amount, for his performance of Seguiriyas and Tientos.
El Mati has a proven record in cante de atrás (singing for baile), as attested by his experience in the companies of Pastora Galván, Manolo Marín, Israel Galván, Rafael Campallo, Cristina Hoyos and Antonio Canales. Likewise, he has accompanied artists of the stature of Jorge Pardo, El Pele, Pepe Habichuela and Esperanza Fernández.
The cantaor Francisco Escudero Márquez El Perrete, from Badajoz, has been the winner of the 1st Group of Cantes Mineros for his performance of the Taranta and the Levantica, and of the 2nd Group, corresponding to the cantes of Málaga, Granada, Córdoba and Huelva, for the Malagueña and the Fandangos.
Olga Aznar García, better known as Olga Llorente, has been awarded the Desplante Femenino, for her baile of Caracoles and Tarantos. Olga is a renowned bailaora, dancer and choreographer. Born in Barcelona, she has shared the stage with Pastora Galván, El Farru, Belén Maya, Diego Carrasco, Juan Ogalla, El Junco and El Barullo. The Desplante Masculino prize was not awarded.
The Bordón Minero prize of 6,000 euros was awarded to the guitarist José Fermín Fernández, from Granada, for his toque por Tarantos and Bulerías. The Filón prize for the best instrumentalist, also 6,000 euros, was awarded to Alejandro Solano, from Cartagena, for his dexterity playing the marimba in the Tarantos and Seguiriyas-Bulerías.
Photo above: Winners of the 2019 Lámpara Minera. From left to right, Alejandro Solano, José Fermín Fernández, Matías López El Mati and Olga Llorente. Photo by: Festival Cante de Las Minas.