MARIA OSENDE – ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
Maria Osende is a highly accomplished professional dancer, teacher and choreographer. Osende’s personal and unique artistic voice ads to her deep knowledge of flamenco, ballet and contemporary dance. Her solo and company work is creative, engaging and impeccably produced. Her vision is one of flamenco as an open artistic form that is powerful and relevant in today’s world, and that can communicate with audiences everywhere.
In the fall of 2015 Osende was awarded with the “Established Artist Recognition Award” by Arts Nova Scotia and the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council.
Born and raised in Madrid, Spain, Osende started dancing ballet at the age of seven with Luis Fuente, Julia Estevez and José Granero and later on flamenco at the Centro de Arte Flamenco Amor de Dios.
At seventeen a Fulbright scholarship allowed her to deepen her ballet studies at the renown School of American Ballet in New York City. Osende danced professionally with the Compañia Nacional de Danza in Spain and the Berlin Ballet in Germany, where she was soon promoted to soloist. Prior to moving to Halifax, Osende worked with various internationally renowned choreographers, performing a wide ranged repertoire of classical and contemporary dance.
Overtime, Osende’s passion for creativity and artistic freedom brought her closer and closer to flamenco and her Spanish roots, becoming a freelance flamenco dancer in Berlin before moving to Canada in 2003 and taking Halifax by storm.
Since then, she has created numerous flamenco shows for her company and toured across Canada, obtaining rave reviews from critics and audience alike and becoming one of Canada’s leading flamenco artists. Her work has been described as “Some of the hottest, freshest flamenco this side of the Straight of Gibraltar“. Moving comfortably between tradition and innovation, Osende also engages in projects involving other dance forms, architecture, technology and various music genres.