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Cuban Classical Ballet performance in Miami


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The opportunities for Cuban dancers in America has been a topic before on Ballet Talk. In today's LINKS, Beverly posted the following

Does anyone know anything about the start-up of the "Cuban Classical Ballet" in Miami?

Here is a link to an article in El Nuevo Herald


The article is in Spanish, but I translated it through http://www.freetranslation.com (always rough, but it gives the general gist).

The general gist is that Pedro Pablo Pena, Artistic Director of the International Ballet Festival in Miami, is starting up a ballet company that will provide a performing outlet for recent Cuban defectors.

I read the article and was impressed by the number of dancers involved. A quick count gave me 12 dancers in principal or soloist roles, and there is reference to a corps. The next "season" (temporada) of this company is given as January 2007. So perhaps "showcase" would be a better term. But what a showcase!

Among the dancers were several who have been discussed elsewhere on Ballet Talk, including Adiarys Almeida and Roland and Daniel Sarabia.. The program consisted of --

Grand Pas (Paquita) -- Octavio Martin, Arista Ettlinger, Kaleena Burks, Cameron Dawson, Andres Estevez, and Karen Mata;

Swan Lake Act II pas de deux, Adiarys Almeida and Rolando Sarabia;

Pas from La Fille Mal Gardee, Leah Burge and Raykdel Caceres;

Pas from Le Corsaire, Kaleena Burks and Andres Estevez (the article says that they recieved the fist "gran ovacion" of the evening);

Diana and Acteon, Zoica Tovar and Daniel Sarabia;

and Black Swan pas de deux, Adiarys Almedia and Daymel Sanchez.

Of Almeida's Black Swan, the writer comments: "It is possible that other ballerinas can equal the spectacular quality of the multiple fouttees of Almeida, but it is difficult to imagine anyone performing the famous 32 fouettes ... without interrupting the thread of communication established with the audience. In a coloquial manner and without any effort, her eyes in direct contact with the public, and with a defiant and amused look on her face. Without any doubt, a great portrayal."

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This sounds like a very exciting effort. Wish I could be there!


The article is in Spanish, but I translated it through http://www.freetranslation.com (always rough, but it gives the general gist).

I discovered (by accident, of course) that I can get a translation through Google by simply right-clicking text in French, Spanish, Italian perhaps other languages. No languages with non-Latin alphabets, though. :D Also rough but adequate.

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Thanks for that link -- with 4 performance photos, too. Fans -- or detractors -- of high extensions should check out Adiarys Almeida's Odile.

The article is itself is very "local pride" oriented and full of hyperbole, but you can gather the excitement of the event, especially for the Cuban community. ("The audience was in a delirium Sunday afternoon.")

Not to mention the rich praise for all the dancers. For instance, Almeida "is an absolute and total ballerina with extraordinary gifts which captivate and astonish from the first moment that she appears on the stage. ... She is the 'primerisima' ballerina which any professional company should desire to have among its ranks." You get the idea.

There are no references to the exisitence of those Cuban-American artists -- or ANY of the dancers, for that matter -- who perform at a company that is already firmly established in the city, Miami City Ballet.

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The DIARIO LAS AMÉRICAS may indeed have a political agenda (re: Cuba). I'm not sure. My friend who attended the performance said there were palpable political undertones to the pre-performance announcements. This may account for the omissions you note, bart.

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Bart and Beverly...Thankyou for posting these links. The pictures were really beautiful to look at!

My question is, assumming that most of these dancers already are members of other companies, does it sound as if Cuban Classical Ballet will be a company made up of 'guest artists' with only a few perhaps as actual members? Andres and Zoica are members of Orlando Ballet, Adiarys Almeida (Cincinnati), Daniel Sarabia (Boston) are just a few who already have employment elsewhere.

I was just wondering what exactly is Cuban Classical Ballet's ultimate goal?

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