Back Stage – Ivan Najera lectures at Mondavi Center |

Back Stage – Ivan Najera lectures at Mondavi Center

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For Ivan Najera, Wednesday will be one of those days he’ll always happily remember.

That’s because he will give a pre-performance lecture immediately preceding the Paco de Lucia concert at the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts at the University of California at Davis.

“Paco de Lucia is considered the best living, all-around guitarist in the world,” Najera noted. “I am so honored with this invitation, and I’m filled with excitement that I will have the opportunity to meet Paco and the rest of Paco’s sextet members, interview Paco, give my pre-performance lecture, and later hear them perform. I guess this opportunity comes sometimes once in a lifetime.”

In his 40-minute lecture starting at 7 p.m., Najera will talk about the Gypsy culture and history, and its role in Europe, particularly in Spain where flamenco music developed. A question-answer period is included.

“I’ll be discussing how Paco de Lucia became the pioneer in combining the traditional flamenco with the Western rhythms as in jazz and classical, as well as with Latin and Brazilian rhythms,” Najera added.

The Penn Valley guitarist isn’t nervous at all; Najera is used to playing original flamenco Latin jazz almost weekly solo and with his group in Northern California clubs and concert halls.

Wednesday’s concert is at 8 p.m. Admission is $29-$39 for adults and $14.50-$19.50 for students and children.

Call toll-free (866) 754-2787 for ticket information and/or directions.

For more information about Najera, check his Web site at or e-mail him at

Back Stage appears weekly in Prospector. Call in comments and art news: 477-4232.

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