Antonio Canales was born in 1961 in the Triana neighborhood of Seville. He began his formal studies at the National Ballet of Spain, where he was able to work as a soloist, deciding later to make the move to Paris. There, Canales joined the company of Maguy Marin, which opened the doors for him to the world of dance on an international level. He headlined in some fifty performances, appearing on show bills with important figures such as R. Nureyev or Maya Plisetskaya. At this point, Canales had become an international dance celebrity.
In 1988, he received the Navisela award in Italy for best dancer. In 1990, Canales was also joint recipient of the Best International Dancer prize in Mexico with Julio Bocca. In 1992 he created his own company with two choreographies: A ti, Carmen Amaya and Siempre flamenco. His next show, Torero, premiered in Montreal, Canada, in 1993. Just one year later, the show opened in Madrid, where it was so successful that to date, the show has been performed on more than 1,000 occasions. Antonio Canales received the National Award for Dance in 1995. One year later, the show Gitano premiered in the Teatro Central of Seville. In 1998, he teamed with the Catalan stage designer Lluis Pasqual to present Bengues in the Madrid Autumn Festival. As a result of a commission from the National Ballet of Spain, he created Grito, which premiered in New York’s city centre.
In 1999 he opened the school that bore his name, Fuerza Latina in Avila; he also received the Max Award for best dance performer, he filmed the movie Vengo and he received the Medal of Andalusia, his homeland. In 2000, the Theatre Festival of Merida invited him to premiere Prometeo. Over 2001, he toured Latin American and Spain with Bailaor. The following year he celebrated the tenth anniversary of his company with the reopening of Torero. In 2003 he offered a show in Seville that paid tribute to Fernando Villalon called Ojos Verdes, also receiving another Max Theatre Award for best dance performer. Carmen, Carmela (2004) showed Canales’ vision of Carmen de P. Merimee. He also took part in the Seville Biennial Flamenco Festival along with flamenco giants such as Paco de Lucia, Tomatito and Eva Yerbabuena. He also participated in the Festival of Classical Theatre in Merida in 2005 with Sangre de Edipo. In 2006, he presented Musical Flamenco Los Grandes, touring with that show until 2007. In Caracas, Venezuela he presented in 2009 his personal version of The House of Bernarda Alba, the timeless play written by Federico Garcia Lorca.
In the last few years, Antonio Canales has worked in Guanajuato, Mexico participating in events related to the bicentenary of Mexico’s independence. He has also taught lessons at the Theatre of Madrid, collaborated with the Cervantes institute and continued offering his shows in different European and American capital cities.