Grammy-winning Cuban singer Albita takes to London stage

Albita Rodriguez reflects on a long career as she continues the quest to bring Cuba's musical heritage to audiences around the world.

LONDON (REUTERS) - Grammy-award winning singer Albita Rodriguez is such a celebrated interpreter of Cuban music that when a new version of the opera Carmen was produced, set in revolutionary Havana, a role was created especially for her.

Albita plays Senora in Carmen La Cubana, a production of Georges Bizet's 19th century opera playing in London this month as part of a world tour that started in Paris, 2016.

Carmen is just the latest act in a distinguished career for Rodriguez, known as Albita, who was born in Havana in 1962 to parents that were popular Cuban folk singers.

She gained fame in Cuba but her career exploded when she arrived in Miami in 1993. Since then, she has performed around the world, befriended stars such as Madonna and Gianni Versace, and released eight albums, two of which have won Grammys.

Albita's long career has seen her perform her beloved Cuban music around the world and also seen her take to the stage on Broadway for the 2005 musical Mambo Kings.

With Carmen La Cubana she will continue that journey, with performances after current London dates scheduled in Germany, Switzerland and China.