The Flamenco Arts Festival mission is to place a spotlight on Hispanic Heritage Month through the presentation of world-class flamenco performances and related arts educational programs; promote and preserve the art of flamenco; make the performing arts accessible to families and children; diversify the performing arts calendar; and build bridges of positive experiences between people.


The Flamenco Arts Festival coincides with National Hispanic Heritage Month and presents world-class flamenco performances and educational arts programs. It is an annual event that brings a prominent flamenco company from Spain to Santa Barbara. For 4 days, the visiting guest artists perform, teach, lecture, interact with participants, and represent Spain. Festivities include live concerts, lectures, films and documentaries, award presentations, dance and music workshops, and celebrations.

Vibiana and her father, Alberto Pizano, founded the Festival in 1999. It was Vibiana who sought to create a flamenco festival in Santa Barbara after attending the Bienal de Flamenco de Sevilla in 1994. Her father, Alberto Pizano, who co-founded the Santa Barbara Mariachi Festival in 1995, had the know-how and experience to get it off the ground.

For Vibiana and Alberto, Santa Barbara was the perfect location for a flamenco festival. With the beautiful coastline, its courtyards, paseos, and Spanish legacy, there is no better place for a flamenco festival than Santa Barbara, the American Riviera.

Photos by Fritz Olenberger