Maestro Rafael Cañizares’ School of Flamenco Guitar

A true specialist

The school is directed by Rafael Cañizares, winner of the National Bordón Minero Flamenco Guitar Award (Festival de la Unión) in 1993. At the age of 18, in 1974, he was a finalist in the National Flamenco Guitar Competition in Jerez de la Frontera. He holds a university degree in flamenco guitar and has been a professor at the Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (ESMUC) for over a decade.

Internationally recognized

The maestro has accompanied great flamenco vocalists like Fosforito, La Niña de la Puebla, Chocolate, Curro Malena, Naranjito de Triana, Luis de Córdoba, Diego Clavel, Manuel Gerena, and many others. He was a member of the group of his brother, Juan Manuel Cañizares, for over 20 years and also accompanied Mike Oldfield in his tour of Spain in 1993 as a guest artist.

Exclusive methodology

The school offers private classes to students of all ages and levels who want to improve their skills as a hobby or receive professional instruction. To this end, the flamenco guitar school uses its own method developed by Rafael Cañizares, ‘Slowly and in Time’, to simplify understanding the guitar and improve students’ skills.

Classes: know the school

The Flamenco Guitar School Rafael Cañizares is a center highly recognized for its quality in teaching and the high level of all its programs.

Testimonials from students

Some opinions about the experience that students of different levels have had over time.

The “Intensive Course” I took with Rafael Canizares is one of the most important things I have done in my musical life, nearly as important as the first day I picked up the guitar or the day you realise your love for the instrument. Why? It is because Rafael finds the way to get your playing to the next level, he searches for ways and strategies, and with targeted exercises he facilitates the process. That is what I experienced with my time with him. The way he teaches is with the care and warmth of an uncle, with patience and generosity. It is also ultra clear the many years he has been playing professionally and the time he has been teaching, with the materials he gives for further study, and the ease at which he can problem solve issues in playing. For me personally, it was more than just simply another guitar class, the were beautiful moments shared together and fully recharging in the inspiration department.
Gracias Maestro!

Rafael was the best teacher I’ve ever had for transmitting the essence of what flamenco guitar is. His musicality, his ‘flamenconess’, and his personality inspire me. He helped me to realise what I needed and how to work to get it. This is why Rafael has been the best guide I could hope for to show me how to become a guitarist. Thanks a million, Rafael!

Dear Rafael, thank you very much for the quality of the intensive course week.
As you could discover in the first moments, I love the flamenco guitar ,but I did not know how to study.
Having no access to a flamenco guitar teacher who could guide me, I developed bad habits that affected both my evolution and my personal satisfaction.

In just one week, you managed to give me study guidelines, make me aware of what I was neglecting and, above all, gave me the saving perspective that I can play well with the right amount of effort, dedication and time on my part.
All that, in a week, to compas of your patient experience, love and your sense of humor that has no equal ?
I do not know how to tell you who impressed me the most, Rafael the teacher, or Rafael the person.
What is clear is that you won my esteem and admiration, and that I want to take classes and coffees with you again.
And when I get to play well, I’ll dedicate you some Alegrías, which is the least I owe you.
A hug!

I started as an autodidact from an early age, I honestly did not understand the instrument, but Rafael helped me to understand it.
the instrument, but Rafael helped me to understand it. I learned to master
the techniques of the flamenco guitar, to explore new styles, to interpret the music in a deeper way and also to correct mistakes and bad habits that had arisen.
I feel that I have made significant progress thanks to his guidance and support.
I want to express my sincere appreciation for your dedication, not only during the lessons, but also outside of them.

To keep this brief, I will single out two elements of Rafael Cañizares’ teaching that are of the highest value for me:  one, in the immediate gratification category; and the other, that ripens over time.

The element in mind that is so pleasurable in the moment is when the Maestro brandishes his guitar to demonstrate what needs to be learned:  the sounds unfurl themselves kaleidoscopically, impishly.  The essence of each palo, but with myriad variations, never the same; they seem to well up and gush out in an endless fountain of ideas. A miniature concert, each time an honor. 

The great gift that ripens over time is the exquisite attention that Rafael  Cañizares  trains on the use of the guitarist’s hands.  Is the right hand in the right position for this particular technique, the position that will lead to fluency, health, and speed?   Is the thumb getting in the way of the other fingers?   And what about the left hand?  Is the wrist forced?     Nothing escapes the Eagle Eye, and if the student came to the academy with bad habits, those are all unsparingly rooted out.      Little by little, the correct positions become habit – and voilà!  Overnight, a technique that had seemed impossible comes nimbly off the fingers – and so with another challenging technique!  And yet another!  And sounding good!  This is the sensation that I will work gratefully to perpetuate for the rest of my life. 

What to say about Rafa, just look at his career and that of his brother, both have played all over the world with the best, both teachers at the school of music in Barcelona, learning with him is to learn from someone who has been in the heart of flamenco with the best, not that they passed through there, but they are part of it. I’ve been with him for a year and I enjoy like a dwarf, the perfect methodology and Rafa, who before being a guitarist, is a great human being, a mentor, a teacher, humble and passionate, he gets involved even more than he should. Humanity, laughter and maximum knowledge. Whether you are looking for a professional future with the guitar or not, he changes your life I guess, because wherever you want to go he has already been there before.

Do you need more info?

We are sure that the Rafael Cañizares School of Flamenco Guitar will more than meet any expectations you may have.

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