Alba Flores

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Alba Flores
Alba Flores 2017.jpg
Flores in 2017
Alba González Villa

(1986-10-27) October 27, 1986 (age 34)
Madrid, Spain
Years active2004–present
Known forVis a Vis
La Casa de Papel
Parent(s)Antonio Flores
Ana Villa

Alba González Villa (born October 27, 1986), known professionally as Alba Flores, is a Spanish actress. She is best known for her roles as Saray Vargas in Vis a Vis (Locked Up) and Nairobi in La Casa de Papel (Money Heist).

Early life and education[edit]

Alba Flores is the only daughter of musician and composer Antonio Flores and Ana Villa, a theatrical producer.[1] The granddaughter of Lola Flores known as "La Faraona" ("The Pharaoh"), niece of singers Lolita Flores and Rosario Flores, and cousin of actress Elena Furiase.[2] [3] Her paternal grandfather, Antonio González referred to as "El Pescaílla" was also a Spanish singer and guitarist and considered as one of the fathers of Catalan Rumba. He was of Gitano ethnicity.[4][5][6]

Alba studied dramatic interpretation from the age of thirteen, with secondary training in piano performance. In her brief career onstage, she performed in a number of roles, the most notable of these Luna de miel en Hiroshima (Honeymoon in Hiroshima) (2005), and the Romani version of A Midsummer Night's Dream (2007). [7]


2005-2014: Career Beginnings[edit]

In 2005, Alba made her cinematic debut with Chus Gutiérrez's, El calentito (The Warm), with Verónica Sánchez, Ruth Díaz, Macarena Gómez, Estíbaliz Gabilondo, and Lluvia Rojo among other performers.[8]

In television, she first participated in an episode of the series the El comisario in 2006. In 2008, she landed a role in the Antenna 3 television series The Ulysses Syndrome. The same year she performed in the musical theater production of Enamorados anónimos (Love Anonymous: The Copla Musical in Broadway) helmed by dance choreographer Blanci Li and music composer Javier Limón.[9]

In 2009, she recorded her father's song, "No Puedo Enamorarme de Ti (I cannot fall in love with you)", for the soundtrack of a movie by Roberto Santiago's, Al final del camino, starring Malena Alterio and Fernando Tejero as the protagonists. [10]

She trained at the Corazza Acting Studio by the renowned acting coach Juan Carlos Corazza. She's one of the generation of actors of the studio, a list that includes Javier Bardem, an Oscar Awards winning actor.[11] She participated in the studio's 2011 theater play, Comedia Y Sueno (Comedia and Dream, the most beautiful lie).[12]

2013-2014: Television Roles[edit]

Beginning in 2013, she was cast in a main role as the protagonist's Moroccan servant, Jamila, in the Antena 3 series El tiempo entre costuras (The Time in Between), set in Spain and the Northern Protectorates in Morocco, following the Spanish Civil War. She then played an Indian woman in the movie made for TV based on the life of Spanish Missionary Vicente Ferrer. Filming took place in Anantapur, India.[13] This was followed by an appearance in the TVE series Cuéntame as an important witness in a plot involving corrupt police.[8]

2015-2019: Career Breakthrough[edit]

From 2015 - 2019, she played the character named Saray Vargas de Jesús, a Gypsy, who initially faced a 4-year prison sentence for Assault in Vis a Vis (Locked Up). The show suffered comparisons to Orange is the New Black before the premiere due to similar prison setting, however, after the initial episodes, was proven that the two shows are different in themes in which Vis a Vis is more of a high octane thriller Drama and Dark Humor as to the Comedy Drama of Orange is the New Black. Considered as a clever and thrilling breakout out hit by critics and fans alike, the show gave Flores her first breakout role in television. For this, she received her first TV Award, a shared Best Female Performer in Fiction Award with the female cast via Ondas Awards, a Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Award for Spanish Actor's Union Awards and several other acting citations.[14][15] [16] [17] In 2017, Netflix bought Global streaming rights for the show. With a strong following, the show run for a total of four seasons and an additional spinoff called Vis a Vis: Oasis premiered in 2020. Flores, who played an essential character on the main show had a special guest appearance in the finale to close the series.

2017-Present: International Recognition with La Casa de Papel[edit]

Nairobi mural in Köln-Ehrenfeld.

While working with Álex Pina in Vis a Vis, the producer called her and asked if she was interested in joining his new show La Casa de Papel (Money Heist). She didn't go to an audition process. Instead, Pina wrote a role specifically for her as one of the bank robbers on the show nicknamed Nairobi, an expert in counterfeiting and forgery and the team's Quality Control Manager who's in charge in printing the money in Parts One and Two and overseeing the melting of gold in Parts Three and Four. [18] After the series was cancelled after its one-season run, Netflix acquired the show's Global Streaming rights late 2017 and since then gained worldwide critical recognition, becoming Netflix's most viewed non-English series. Due to the massive popularity of the show worldwide, Netflix, ordered additional seasons prompting the producers, writers and cast members to return to the show. The series received critical acclaim for its sophisticated plot and engaging characters as well as winning several awards including best drama series at the International Emmy Awards. Her role as Nairobi brought her international recognition as well as numerous acting citations. She won a Premios Iris Best Actress Award as well as several nominations for her work as Nairobi.[19][20]

Other Works[edit]

She served as the Spanish narrator for the Netflix made documentary entitled Night on Earth. [21]


In between working in television she also performs in theatre plays. Some of her recent notable works are: The 2016 Spanish Representation La Rosa Tatuada by Tennessee Williams.[22] The Troyanas, based on the tragedy written by Greek playwright Euripides about the Women of Troy after the end of Trojan War. She played Políxena, the daughter of the King of Troy who was sacrificed after the fall of Troy. It premiered on Mérida Internation Classical Theatre Festival. Flores was nominated for Best Supporting Actress Award in Spanish Actor's Union Awards for her performance.[7] The musical play "Drac Pack" written by her Vis a Vis co-star and friend Najwa Nimri and the Spanish version of La excepción y la regla by German Playwright Bertolt Brecht wherein she was nominated for Best Theatre Actress on Fotogramas de Plata. [23] [24] [25]

Theatre Works[edit]

Year Title Author Director
2005 Honeymoon in Hiroshima Esteve Ferrer
2007 Midsummer Night's Dream William Shakespeare Tamzin Townsend
2008 Enamorados “Anonimos" Olga Iglesias Durán Blanca Li y Javier Limón
2011 Comedia Y Sueno William Shakespeare, Federico García Lorca Juan Carlos Corazza
2016 La Rosa Tatua Tennessee Williams Carme Portaceli
2016 Drac Pack Najwa Nimri, Emilio Tomé y Carlos Dorrego Fernando Soto
2017 Troyanas Euripides, versión de Alberto Conejero Carme Portaceli
2019 La excepción y la regla Bertolt Brecht Catalina Lladó

Personal life[edit]

Her father, Antonio Flores composed a song dedicated for her entitled "Alba" with lyrics, " So pretty, brunette, as gypsy as she was". She was nine years old when her father died, 15 days after her grandmother, Lola Flores died.[26]

Aside from acting, she is also a multi-instrumentalist and performs on stage thru theatre plays.

Flores is vegetarian and has campaigned on behalf of the Latin division of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, saying that, "You have to leave the animals off the plate."[27]

Openly lesbian and Romani on her father's side, she has been an active ally and advocate for the LGBT and Spanish Roma community as well as campaigning for environmental causes and women's rights. She participates in talks and advocacies about feminism.[28][29]



Year Title Role Director
2005 El calentito Amaya Chus Gutiérrez
2006 Los managers Chica Casting Fernando Guillén Cuervo
2013 Vicente Ferrer Shamira Agustín Crespi
2015 The Memory of Water Carmen Matías Bize


Year Title Role Notes
2006 El comisario Sohara Episode: "Y dime tonta"
2008 El síndrome de Ulises Arabia Salazar Episode: "Volver"
2013 Vicente Ferrer Shamira TV movie
The Time in Between Jamila 5 episodes
2014 Cuéntame cómo pasó La Chelo Episode: "En la boca del lobo"
2015–2019 Vis a vis Saray Vargas de Jesús Main role; 40 episodes
2017–2020 Money Heist Ágata Jiménez / Nairobi Main role
2020 Vis a vis: El Oasis Saray Vargas de Jesús Episode 8

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result Ref.
2015 Ondas Awards Best Female Performer in Fiction (ex aequo female cast) Vis a vis Won [14]
2016 Spanish Actor's Union Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Vis a vis Nominated [30]
2017 Premios Feroz Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Vis a vis Nominated [31]
Spanish Actor's Union Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Won [15]
2018 Premios Iris Best Actress Vis a vis Nominated [32]
Spanish Actor's Union Best Supporting Actress in Theatre Troyanas Nominated [7]
Premios Feroz Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Money Heist Nominated [33]
Spanish Actor's Union Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Nominated [34]
2019 Premios Iris Best Actress Money Heist Won [35]
Spanish Actor's Union Awards Best Lead Actress in a Television Series Nominated [36]
Premios MiM Best Actress Nominated [37]
Zapping Awards Best Actress Nominated [38]
Fotogramas de Plata Best Theatre Actress La Excepcion Y La Regla Nominated [25]
2020 Spanish Actor's Union Awards Best Lead Actress in a Television Series Money Heist Nominated [39]
Premios Feroz Best Supporting Actress in a Television Series Nominated [40]
Platino Awards for IberoAmerican Cinema Best Supporting Actress Won [41]


  1. ^ "Tokio & Nairobi, las actrices españolas que "la rompen" en La casa de papel". Infobae (in Spanish). January 28, 2018. Retrieved April 9, 2018.
  2. ^ Naranjo, Pablo (February 13, 2018). "Alba Flores, una actriz de raza que no se anda con tonterías". Chit Chat Post (in Spanish). Quokkers S.L. Archived from the original on August 12, 2019. Retrieved April 9, 2018.
  3. ^ ""The Flores Saga:25 years without La Faraona"". Elpais. Retrieved May 16, 2020.
  4. ^ Solari, Di Ilaria (April 1, 2020). ""Il matriarcato è già qui" parola di Alba Flores aka Nairobi la super star de La casa di carta 4". ELLE (in Italian). Retrieved April 26, 2020.
  5. ^ Davis, Arianna (April 2, 2020). "Alba Flores Reveals "Money Heist's" Nairobi Wasn't in the Original Script". Oprah Magazine. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
  6. ^ "Nairobi de "La casa di carta": "Quando a scuola mi chiamavano zingara"". (in Italian). July 2, 2018. Retrieved April 26, 2020.
  7. ^ a b c "Kuranda Representatives". Retrieved June 20, 2020.
  8. ^ a b "Alba Flores y Álvaro Cervantes, Premio Actúa Joven Talento de la Fundación AISGE". Artezblai (in Spanish). November 14, 2017. Retrieved April 9, 2018.
  9. ^ "Enamorados Anónimos el musical dela copla en Broadway". Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  10. ^ "Al Final del Camino Music Department Crew". Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  11. ^ "The Corazza Study". Retrieved June 20, 2020.
  12. ^ "COMEDY AND DREAM. THE MOST BEAUTIFUL LIE". Retrieved June 20, 2020.
  13. ^ "Vicente Ferrer Movie". IMDB. Retrieved June 20, 2020.<
  14. ^ a b Redondo, David (October 28, 2015). "Las chicas de Vis a Vis y El ministerio del tiempo triunfan en los premios Ondas". Los 40 (in Spanish). Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  15. ^ a b "Spanish Actors Union (2017)". IMDb. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  16. ^ "Alba Flores, La Revelación de Vis a Vis". El Mundo (in Spanish). Unidad Editorial Información General S.L.U. June 25, 2015. Retrieved July 4, 2018.
  17. ^ "Alba Flores es Saray: Vis a vis". Fox (in Spanish). Fox Networks Group España, S.L.U. 2015. Retrieved July 4, 2018.
  18. ^ Davis, Arianna (April 2, 2020). "Alba Flores reveals La Casa de Papel/Money Heist creator wrote Nairobi's role for her". Hearst Magazine Media, Inc. Retrieved June 7, 2020.
  19. ^ "El duro y aplaudido discurso de Belén Esteban tras recibir Sálvame un Premio Iris: "Darnos un premio es un milagro"". El Mundo. Unidad Editorial Información General, S.L.U. November 19, 2019. Retrieved November 19, 2019.
  20. ^ Marrón, Mireya (June 5, 2020). "Alba, una Flores "abrumada" y con "miedo" a su fama mundial: "Intento lidiar con ello"" [Alba, a Flores "overwhelmed" and "afraid" of her world fame: "I try to deal with it"]. Nius Diario (in Spanish). Retrieved June 5, 2020.
  21. ^ . 2020 Retrieved January 30, 2020. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  22. ^ "The Tattooed Rose at The Maria Guerrero Theater". Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  23. ^ "Trojans, I sing of resistance and strength". abc. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  24. ^ ""Drac Pack" of Dreams and Vampires". abc. Retrieved December 30, 2016.
  25. ^ a b "Fotogramas de Plata, Spain (2019)". Twitter Official Fotogramas Cine Account. Retrieved January 22, 2020.
  26. ^ "From Lola's death to Antonio's".
  27. ^ "Alba Flores se hace vegetariana: "Hay que dejar los animales fuera del plato,", 18 May 2020.
  28. ^ "Alba Flores Official Twitter Account".
  29. ^ "Alba Flores Official Instagram Account".
  30. ^ "Los protagonistas de 'La casa de papel' copan las nominaciones de los Premios de la Unión de actores". Antena 3. Madrid: Atresmedia Corporación de Medios de Comunicación. July 2, 2018. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  31. ^ "'La casa de papel' arrasa en las nominaciones a los premios Feroz". Antena 3. Madrid: Atresmedia Corporación de Medios de Comunicación. July 11, 2018. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  32. ^ "Atv Awards, Spain (2018)". IMDb. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  33. ^ "Feroz Awards, ES (2018)". IMDb. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  34. ^ "Spanish Actors Union (2018)". IMDb. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  35. ^ "Atv Awards, Spain (2019)". El Mundo. Retrieved November 19, 2019.
  36. ^ "Spanish Actors Union (2019)". IMDb. Retrieved March 29, 2019.
  37. ^ "Alba Flores, Pepe Viyuela y Paco Leon: entre los nominados de los Premios MiM series 2019". Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  38. ^ "Zapping Awards 2020". IMDB. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  39. ^ "Spanish Actors Union – 2020 Awards". Retrieved April 21, 2020.
  40. ^ "Feroz Awards, ES (2020)". Premios Feroz. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  41. ^ "The PLATINO Awards for Best Female Supporting in Mini-series or TV series is Alba Flores". (in Spanish). Retrieved June 29, 2020.

External links[edit]