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Orlando Ballet announces Mr Bujones is ill

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Orlando Ballet issued a press release today announcing the Fernando Bujones had recently been diagnosed with lung cancer and was taking a three month leave of absence to receive treatment in Miami. His wife will also be on leave during this time. Peter Stark, Orlando Ballet school director and AD will take on added responsibilties, as will Samantha Dunster, Ballet Mistress and Orlando Molina, Ballet Master. I do not have a link. I can copy and paste the release.

Our thoughts and prayers are with him.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Orlando Ballet Artistic Director

Fernando Bujones Takes Three-Month Leave

(September 27, 2005 – Orlando, FL) – Orlando Ballet announces that Artistic Director Fernando Bujones has been taken ill and will take a three-month leave of absence. He was recently diagnosed with lung cancer. Mr. Bujones will undergo treatment over the upcoming months and will be absent from his duties at Orlando Ballet for the duration. President of the Ballet’s Board of Directors Linda Landman-Gonzalez said, “During the treatment period upcoming, Orlando Ballet School Director Peter Stark will be Mr. Bujones’ representative at Orlando Ballet. Mr. Bujones’ direction for The Nutcracker and Holiday Triple Treat Rocks! will be set by Ballet Mistress Samantha Dunster and Ballet Master Orlando Molina. Also on leave will be Maria Bujones, Assistant to the Artistic Director. Mr. and Mrs. Bujones expect to return to work at the Ballet in the new year.”

Mr. Bujones is keeping his spirits high and, inspired by Lance Armstrong’s own miraculous “journey back to life,” is filled with his usual true winning spirit, determined to get well and return to Orlando Ballet.

Fernando Bujones is a former Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre and world-class dancer. He has partnered with some of ballet’s greatest ballerinas in the major ballet companies across the world. Mr. Bujones was the first American to win the gold medal at the Varna Ballet Competition.

Together with his wife Maria and his family, Mr. Bujones will be treated and will recuperate in Miami. Orlando Ballet and the Bujones’ family ask for the positive thoughts and prayers of his fans throughout the world.

Established in 1974, Orlando Ballet is the only premier professional ballet company in the Greater Orlando area. Under the direction of Artistic Director Fernando Bujones, the 32-year-old organization employs 28 national and international professional dancers, performing both full-length classical ballets and repertoire programs. Via its mission, Orlando Ballet seeks to entertain, educate, and enrich the cultural growth of our community through the highest quality of dance.

Orlando Ballet

Russell P. Allen, Executive Director

Orlando Ballet

1111 North Orange Avenue

Orlando, FL 32804

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Mine too! I remember when I was a kid he used to be a resident guest with Boston Ballet and I had the fortunate opportunity to be on stage as a peasant while he was Basilo in Don Q! He was gracious enough to sign autographs for me and some of my buddies! My thoughts and prayers go out to him and his family...

Oooh and I just remembered that his wife, Maria, danced with me in Don Q. She was a "friend of Kitri."

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I pray that Mr. Bujones faces this deadly cancer with grace, courage and dignity. May he recover fully and spend many more years passing on his love of ballet to the many students, company members and fans who admire him.

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This was very sad news to hear. For the short time we've known him, the year my son was an apprentice, I got the feeling that he was a family man, deeply religious and so passionate about his art. I was always surprised each time he approached us to give compliments on my son's performances...even coming over to our car in the parking lot. This was Fernando Bujones. My prayers go out to him, to his wife Maria and their family for a speedy recovery. Tango

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We took class together at Millenoff's in Miami as boys.

Fernando was and will always be an enormous inspiration to me, my family and the entire dance community.

He is the type of guy who remembers everyone.

Not a moment of today will go by that I don't send him my wishes and highest hopes of a very quick and complete recovery.

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To quote the playwright Peter Barnes, when I pray to God, I find I’m talking to myself. However, my secular good wishes go out to Bujones, his family, and his company.

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dirac, I second that and remember fondly when he came to my hometown of Fort Worth Texas (in the seventies????) and electrified us all. Saw him a few times after that in NYC. I can only imagine what an unbelievable teacher and company leader he is, and send my wishes that he will be back in those roles very soon.

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As dirac posted in Links, Fernando ain't gonna let it keep him down. He "continues to direct the Florida company from Miami, where he's undergoing radiation and chemotherapy. . . " notes the Boston Herald.

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