María Teresa Peña Fernández (‘Tere Peña’) was born into the heart of one of the most important casas cantaoras of flamenco gitano: Los Peños. This renowned family has produced many prominent figures, such as her brothers Juan ‘El Lebrijano’ and Pedro Peña, her mother ‘La Perrata’, her uncle ‘El Perrate’, her cousins Pedro and Inés Bacán, Diego Carrasco, Gaspar de Utrera and Tomás de Perrate, her son Nano Peña and her nephews Dorantes and Pedro María Peña, among many others.
Her professional activity has always revolved around the dissemination of knowledge about flamenco. She is a prestigious communicator with more than twenty-five years experience of working for Cadena Ser as director and presenter of the flamenco programme ‘Temple y Pureza’, in addition to periodic collaborations with other media (El País, Canal Plus as well as specialised flamenco media).
At the same time, she has developed an important career as a music producer with more than thirty works to her name; among the highlights is the Palo Nuevo collection, containing her recordings of contemporary classical masters of flamenco. For the recording dedicated to Antonio Núñez ‘El Chocolate’ she won the 2002 ‘Latin Grammy’ for the best flamenco album. She has also received two gold discs and two platinum discs for recordings by the flamenco group Triana Pura.
She has received several major awards for her work in promoting knowledge about flamenco music and facilitating its spread. These include:
– The national prize of flamenco critics, Premio Flamenco Hoy, awarded in 2007
– Premio Nacional a la mejor Labor de Difusión, awarded by the Jerez de la Frontera flamencology chair in 2008
– Premio de Cultura Gitana, Comunicación, awarded by the Instituto de Cultura Gitana in 2015