"In the middle of a standing ovation, a brief and improvised finale added a hypnotizing ending to this Night of Duende:
Rosa Mercedes in dance steps and movements suggested with absolute mastery.
The indescribable magic of flamenco in one's flesh and bones."
Born in Barcelona, Spain, Rosa Mercedes is recognized for her expertise in all the styles of Spanish dance, including flamenco, bolera school, folklore and classical Spanish dance. Hailed by Dance Magazine as “a virtuoso”, she has performed in the most important theaters throughout the United States, Europe, South America and Canada as soloist and principal dancer with companies including Maria Benitez Teatro Flamenco, Compañía Flamenca de Carmen Cortes, Ballet Español de Lucia Real y El Camborio, Ballet Español de Madrid, Zorongo Flamenco Dance Theatre and Segovia Ballet Español.
She has also enjoyed an extensive career in opera, being featured as both choreographer and dancer with the Metropolitan Opera, Opera di Roma, Seattle Opera, Dallas Opera, Opera Lyra Ottawa, Cincinnati Opera, Michigan Opera Theatre, Atlanta Opera, Florentine Opera, Palm Beach Opera, Baltimore Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Tulsa Opera, Washington Summer Opera, Austin Lyric Opera and Opera Naples alongside such greats as Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Domingo, Jose Carreras, Agnes Baltsa, Renata Scotto, Denyse Graves, Julius Rudel, Marco Armiliato and James Levine.
Recent highlights in opera have included being featured as principal dancer for Franco Zeffirelli's production of LA TRAVIATA and the Three Tenors Gala at the Metropolitan Opera, as principal dancer and choreographer for Dallas Opera's production of LA TRAVIATA, and as choreographer for LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR, IL BARBIERE DI SIVIGLIA and DIE ZAUBERFLÖTE for Seattle Opera, AIDA for Cincinnati Opera, CARMEN and LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR for Atlanta Opera, THE PASSENGER, MAGIC FLUTE, RIGOLETTO and LA TRAVIATA for Florida Grand Opera, CARMEN for Opera Lyra Ottawa, AIDA for Michigan Opera Theatre, DON GIOVANNI for UCLA, LA TRAVIATA for Indiana University, FAUST for Opera Naples and LA CENERENTOLA for Green Mountain Opera Festival. She served as assistant director and choreographer for Seattle Opera's young artist production of DON GIOVANNI, and as assistant director on the Madrid production of LUISA FERNANDA with Florida Grand Opera, featuring Placido Domingo at the podium.
She has appeared with Savion Glover in Miami on Tap, in a Gala for UNICEF alongside Audrey Hepburn and Liza Minelli, in a special collaboration for the production Tango with Armando Orzuza and Daniela Arcuri (of Evita and Tango Pasion), as well as in concerts with the Gypsy Kings and Sara Montiel. Her television appearances have included two special programs for PBS, appearances in Puerto Rico and the U.S. as a soloist in presentations by Corazon Gitano, choreographer and dancer for Premio Lo Nuestro with David Bisbal, and numerous interviews for both spanish and english speaking television.
For over 30 years, she has taught classes and workshops around the world, including institutions such as the Escuela de Danza Rosita Segovia (Barcelona, Spain), Miami City Ballet (Miami, FL), Aspen Ballet & School, Cornish College of the Arts (Seattle, WA), Institute of Spanish Arts (Santa Fe, NM) Instituto de las Artes (Cancun, Mexico), Florida Dance Festival (Miami, FL) and the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts & Humanities (Greenville, SC). She has also taught on the faculties of the Harid Conservatory, New World School of the Arts and Florida International University and teaches "movement for singers" classes at opera companies and schools throughout the U.S and abroad. Rosa Mercedes is a recipient of several awards, including the Dance Miami Choreographers Fellowship and the ACCA Critics Choice Award in dance, and has served as a dance panelist and master teacher for the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.
Rosa Mercedes is founder and artistic director of Duende Ballet Español.