Ballet Hispánico comes to Abu Dhabi

The Abu Dhabi performance was attended by ambassadors of US, Costa Rica, Spain and France to the UAE….reports Asian Lite News

Ballet Hispanico of New York made its Arab world debut last Friday at the Cultural Foundation Abu Dhabi auditorium with a ballet performance that celebrated the fusion of diversity, heritage, and Hispanic culture.

Eduardo Vilaro, the Cuban Artistic Director and CEO of Ballet Hispanico, told the Emirates News Agency (WAM) that he was “thrilled to bring the show to this part of the world.”

He added, “The arts serve as a bridge to humanity,” and “we love to take our voices everywhere possible to show the many facets of being Latino.”

Vilaro stated that the auditorium saw 90 percent attendance over the two-day programme, with 1,500 attendees “enjoying a contemporary show that celebrated the different Latin cultures, with different types of dance movements like classical ballet, jazz and modern forms to create a distinctive movement vocabulary.”

The programme began with Pedro Rodriguez’s ‘Club Havana’, an homage to Cuban culture with West African influences through Mambo, Cha cha cha and Rhumba. Big band music, gorgeous costumes, and the story of six couples visiting a club took the audience on a journey to Cuba in the 1950s.

The performance continued with ‘Sombrerísimo’ by Annabelle López, a mysterious and playful work exploring the cultural significance of a hat. The last performance, titled ’18+1′, was an exciting ballet on the music of Pérez Prado, the famous Mexican orchestra leader, and choreographed by Gustavo Ramírez Sansano, presenting the different rhythms of Latin America with a dance of humour.

Ballet Hispanico, founded in 1970 by dancer and educator Tina Ramirez in New York, aimed to provide opportunities for Latino youth and artists when access to the arts was limited for the community.

Vilaro emphasised the company’s commitment to diversity and multiculturalism, highlighting the importance of embracing different perspectives and ideas. “As Latinos, we are a fusion of cultures such as African, Spanish, Asian, and others, which gives us a unique perspective celebrating all parts of those diasporas,” he added.

He stressed that multiculturalism “is important because it teaches us how to be better humans. It is the gateway to unity; if we can be good neighbours in a city, then we should be good neighbours in the world.”

In partnership with the US Embassy, Ballet Hispánico, the largest Hispanic cultural organisation in the United States and one of America’s Cultural Treasures, has performed throughout the Americas and the Caribbean, Europe and now the Middle East.

The Abu Dhabi performance was attended by the US Ambassador to the UAE Martina Strong; the Costa Rican Ambassador Francisco J. Chacón Hernández; the Spanish Ambassador Iñigo de Palacio España; and the French Ambassador Nicolas Niemtchinow, among other diplomats and officials.

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