Ensemble Ibérica

Ensemble Ibérica is a nonprofit performing arts organization.
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Beau Bledsoe - Artistic director, guitars, oud
Beau's performances have been described as “pointedly musical” by Paul Horsley The Kansas City Star.  He regularly performs and records with some of the greatest artists in Tango, Flamenco and classical music as he seeks to integrate different musical cultures with diverse audiences. Beau studied classical guitar at the UMKC Conservatory of Music under Douglas Niedt where he received a Master of Music. It was at this time that Beau met many of the musicians that he still performs with today such as tenor, Nathan Granner, soprano, Victoria Botero, composer/pianist, Brad Cox, and Argentine Tango quintet Tango Lorca. He has continued his own musical studies with such masters as Antonio Andrade, Pedro Cortez and Luis Heredia of La Repompa de Málaga. Through his many diverse projects and ensembles, Beau has had the great fortune of performing in almost every state in the United States. In addition, Beau has toured extensively in Mexico, Argentina, Spain, Portugal, Germany, France, Switzerland, Turkey and Russia.
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Victoria Botero - soprano
With a voice described as “clear, beautiful and thrilling” Colombian-American Soprano Victoria Botero deftly passes between opera, concert and world music stages in repertoire spanning the early baroque to living composers. Her most recent work has been with the critically acclaimed duo Botero Bledsoe with guitarist Beau Bledsoe in programs that feature the intersection of art, folk and popular music from around the world. Their new CD Un ramo de voz (Tzigane) was released in 2013 followed by a concert tour in the Midwest.
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Zsolt Eder - violin
Born in Budapest, Hungary, Zsolt has established himself as an international soloist and chamber musician. Zsolt is in his fifth season as Concertmaster of the Topeka Symphony and enjoys being an active freelancer and violin teacher in the Kansas City area. He is a faculty member at the UMKC Conservatory’s Academy and performs regularly in the Kansas City Symphony. He also works for outreach programs Musical Bridges and Harmony Project KC. Zsolt’s interest in different musical cultures and traditions led him to establish folk music group Ensemble Amarcord in 2014.
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Fedra Cooper Barrera - vocalist
From Vera Cruz, Mexico, Fedra began her professional career at sixteen in as a model and actress with Televisa under the tutelage of Ernesto Alonso and the great actress Aurora Molina. She later graduated from the school of Miguel Angel Valles with honors at the age of eighteen. Fedra was soon employed by the popular Mexican vocalist Luis Miguel as his principal backing vocalist where she toured Europe, South America and Asia extensively for eight years. Soon after, she recorded her first single with producer Alan Coelho that received airplay in the U.S. and Mexico and later recorded her first solo record produced by Pablo Ortiz. She currently resides in Kansas City and is the manager of the Latin pop group “Miratti”.
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Victor Penniman - viola da gamba
Victor Penniman is a violist da gamba (traditional and electric), composer, producer and educator. He has performed as a soloist and with numerous Historical Performance ensembles, including the Oregon Bach Festival, The Tallahassee Bach Parley, the Kansas City Baroque Consortium, as well as countless modern groups covering a wide variety of genres and repertoire. Based in Kansas City, MO, he holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in Operation of Early Music Programs from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
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Rich Wheeler - saxaphones
Rich Wheeler has been a professional saxophonist and saxophone teacher in the Kansas City area for the past 10 years. Rich studied saxophone with the internationally known Vince Gnojek, and jazz with the equally well known Dan Gailey at the Kansas University. Rich has performed across the US and Europe, and can be heard locally with the Rich Wheeler Quartet, Brandon Draper New Quintet, Topshelf Tunes, Peoples Liberation Big Band of Greater Kansas City, and Son Venezuela. Rich can also be heard on many albums including recording dates with The Yards, New Vintage Big Band, Boulevard Big Band, the Fraga band, two albums from the Brandon Draper Quintet, and the new release "Tamam Abi" by Alaturka.
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Brandon Draper - percussion
Brandon’s extensive resume includes performances with both the New Mexico and Santa Fe Symphony Orchestras and the Kansas City Symphony. In contemporary and jazz settings, Draper has performed and/or recorded with Particle, Ottmar Liebert, DJ Logic, Donna Summer, Mose Allison, Steve Coleman, Dick Oatts, Mike Moreno, Bobby Watson, and Kevin Hays. Draper currently performs as a solo artist, multi-in- strumentalist, and with the Turkish-Jazz ensmble - Alaturka, whom he recorded, co-mixed and performed on the 2013 release Yalniz (4.5 Stars - Best albums of 2013 - Downbeat Magazine). Brandon plays guitar with his father (a renowned Hammond B3 organist) in The Draper Family Band and he runs the acclaimed children’s interactive music program Drum Safari with his wife of 14 years Teryn. Currently Draper is on the music faculty at the University of Kansas.

Guitarras Ibéricas

Our resident guitar ensemble featuring Beau Bledsoe, Michael McClintock and Jordan Shipley.
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Michael McClintock - guitars
Michael McClintock graduated from the nationally acclaimed University of Missouri Kansas City Music Conservatory with a Bachelor of Music in guitar performance in 2006. At the conservatory Michael studied under the classical guitar master Douglas Niedt. Since graduation Michael has taken his place squarely in the Kansas City music scene. His first professional musical project was with the Manos Rojas School of Flamenco in Kansas City where he played with, among others, Beau Bledsoe. Bledsoe introduced Michael to the nuances of Flamenco and Argentinean Tango. In 2007 Michael, with dancer Aimee Hughes and guitarist Jarrod Stephenson, formed an independent Flamenco group, Alma Flamenca, which played in the Kansas City area and throughout the Midwest. In 2010 Michael and Jordan Shipley created Mistura Fina in order to perform authentic Brazilian folk and jazz music.

Jordan Shipley - guitars
Jordan studied jazz guitar at the University of Missouri – Kansas City with renowned guitarist Rod Fleeman and under the direction of the great jazz saxophonist Bobby Watson. While at UMKC he also studied classical guitar under Douglas Niedt. Since his studies at UMKC, Jordan has sought out studies of Brazilian music under percussionist Doug Auwarter and classes with renowned Brazilian jazz educator Antonio Adolfo. Jordan is fully immersed in Brazilian music and culture, and as a result he is well versed in many musical styles and instruments from Brazil and speaks Brazilian Portuguese. He has traveled and performed throughout the Southeast region of Brazil, in the cities of Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, as well as many venues in the Kansas City and greater Midwest region. Jordan Shipley’s passion and dedication to the music of Latin America has come to fruition in his most recent project, Mistura Fina.