mussel

7 dancers defected

22 posts in this topic

I saw an interview with three on them on a Miamian TV station. Very young dancers they are. I hope they make it to MCB. Meanwhile, maybe they could infuse some new life in the dormant CCBM...?

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I hope the Knight Foundation grant enables MCB to get on stable financial ground. And if the Mike Piazza casting brings more people to the ballet, that will help the bottom line as well. If so, then perhaps they will have the funding to hire more beautiful dancers, tour more often and give more performances (to packed houses).

MCB would be a great fit for the Vail and Chicago dance festivals.

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From left to right, four of the seven dancers. Ariadnni Martín-(20), Randy Crespo-(22),, Annie Ruiz Díaz-(24)- and Luis Víctor Santana-(23).. The other two are Edward González-(23)- and José Justiz-(20). Dancer # 7, Alejandro Méndez, 20, is still in Mexico.

Ruiz declaration stating "we were determined to find a better artistic life and economic wellness for our families" has stirred a great deal of controversy among the old exiled community, for which they are staying as political refugees, something the older community don't see as a fact among the young wave of Cuban immigrants.

In any case, bienvenidos a Miami! flowers.gif -(Pedro Pablo..how about a welcome gala with some nice glimpses of Black Swan or Corsaire? beg.gif )

557981_417512361678775_1818404547_n.jpg

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Ruiz declaration stating "we were determined to find a better artistic life and economic wellness for our families" has stirred a great deal of controversy among the old exiled community, for which they are staying as political refugees, something the older community don't see as a fact among the young wave of Cuban immigrants.

Yes, I read the same quote in a Spanish paper today, and the comments below were really questioning the motivations. They crossed into Texas asking for political asylum. But their quotes indicate they are economic refugees. How are they any different from the other Latinos who cross the Texas border illegally?

They also praise Alicia Alonzo in their quotes, but one could easily argue that she is the one holding them back, due to her 19th century-only rep choices.

When they go for their INS interviews, I doubt they will mention the economic and artistic repression and instead will focus on the politics. We'll see if the INS employee reads the same papers as cubanmiamiboy and me.

Around the country, American dancers must be thinking "oh great, more Cubans to take our job opportunites! Why didn't these Cubans just stay in Mexico and dance for one of *their* companies?!?"

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In effect, all political refugees are also economic refugees, as the problems caused by politics thoroughly affect the economics of daily life.

It is complicated, to say the least.

There are also many, many dancers in Europe (and, it seems, where I live in Germany especially) from many other countries, and the competition is very tough.

There are also some voices of concern over the "politics" of giving jobs to so many who are not citizens /nationals / long-time residents of the countries where the jobs are.

I, too, was one of those who came for work.

-d-

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I have no problem with anyone coming to the U.S. for a better life for any reason. I have been lucky in life and wish the same for others. Americans should always have competition for our jobs to keep us on our toes!

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^^ If only there were more people who thought the same way. :)

At any rate, it will be interesting to see where these young dancers end up!

-d-

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In effect, all political refugees are also economic refugees, as the problems caused by politics thoroughly affect the economics of daily life.

Try telling that to immigration. But they're Cubans, so in practice I don't think it matters what they say. It doesn't surprise me that that some in Miami are displeased with their candor, but I quite like it.

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From the very moment they need to "defect" and give up national Cuban rights of property, instead of just asking and getting permission to come and go to both Cuba and US-(something any of the two countries would had granted them)-they are tecnically political refugees. There's still a wave-(if a minority, true)-of us Cuban that didn't come here out of hunger, but I understand we're no more in 1959, and that the 98% of my peers start traveling back and forth in between the two countries as soon as they get permanent residency-(one year and one day after landing here). If anything, I really hope they could make it to MCB and inflict some new life in the current aging pleyade of Principals. Let's see.

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According to this article, Arianni Martin has also joined Ballet Arizona and will make her debut in the lead of the upcoming production of Ib Andersen's "Cinderella," and they're waiting for a work permit for Alejandro Mendez, who is currently training with the company until the permit comes through. Also among the new dancers at BA from Cuban National Ballet is Annier Navarro, who the article says came to the US earlier than the seven who defected during the tour to Mexico.

I listed Martin, Navarro, and Crespo in a roster update in the Ballet Arizona forum, but the names didn't strike me at the time, and the bios weren't yet up.

Then they flew to Miami, where the Cuban emigre community welcomed them and immediately set about helping them to find work.

“The day we arrived in Miami, we rested,” Martín says. “The next day, we were auditioning for a ballet academy.”

Eventually, word of the job searches came through the grapevine to Lisbet Companioni, the Cuban-born ballet mistress for Ballet Arizona. She secured auditions for five of them with artistic director Ib Andersen.

“I actually had openings, which I normally wouldn’t have in June,” Andersen says. “They have a good foundation, good training. They’re maybe not used to doing ballets that we do here. It’s a different approach.”

Though three of the seven found a home in Phoenix, all have found work: two in Puerto Rico, one at the Washington (D.C.) Ballet and one at the Sarasota (Fla.) Ballet.


flowers.gif Lisbet Companioni! I look forward to seeing these dancers during my next visit to Phoenix.

Josue Justiz has joined the Studio Company of Washington Ballet:
http://www.washingtonballet.org/sitewide-bios/justiz-josue

which would make Diaz and Santana the two dancers who are in Puerto Rico.

I surmise that because the public-facing part of Santana's Facebook Page lists him as a former member of National Ballet of Cuba, shows photos of him dancing, and states that he's in a relationship with Annie Diaz, I've got the right people. Annie Diaz's Facebook Page says she works at Ballet Concierto de Puerto Rico, whose website only features photos of six dancers. However, the video shows a bigger company.

http://www.balletconcierto.com/%C2'>

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Wonderful that they all found jobs. Interesting that they call came to Miami and none stayed at MCB.

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There's nothing to suggest they auditioned in Miami. In the Arizona Republic article, Ib Andersen states that normally he wouldn't have had positions open in June. Luckily for them and Ballet Arizona, he did. They defected at a tough time to get a contract in NA.

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There's nothing to suggest they auditioned in Miami.

A no so wild guess that they probably did not...

Good for their new companies. Our loss is their gain.

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Wonderful! Wish we had gotten one here at the Joffrey. (Or a MCB tour as someone mentioned...)

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Arianni Martin was cast in Ib Andersen's "Cinderella" this fall, and she and Eric White will do three performances of the Sugar Plum Fairy and her Cavalier, according to the Ballet Arizona "Nutcracker" casting .pdf, downloadable from this page:

http://balletaz.org/performance/next-season-nutcracker/

She's also dancing:

  • Snowflake
  • Marzipan

Randy Crespo is cast as:

  • Herr Stahlbaum
  • Soldier Doll
  • Mouse
  • Arabian Coffee
  • Russian Trepak

Alejandro Mendez is cast as:

  • Spanish Chocolate
  • Russian Trepak
  • Parent
  • Soldier Doll
  • Mouse

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