Contemporary Dance of Cuba: The Great Reference

Contemporary Dance of Cuba: The Great Reference
Fecha de publicación: 
19 February 2024
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This year Contemporary Dance of Cuba celebrates its 65 anniversary, but much moreit’s celebrated. It’s the anniversary of the founding act of modern dance movement in Cuba, at least as an institutional dimension.

Because, although Ramiro Guerra himself, the founding teacher, had starred in some specific presentations of that demonstration, it was not until the triumphant revolution offered him key support for the founding of a group, in September 1959, that it was possible to speak in Cuba of an authentic creative exercise of modern dance.

There were, of course, precedents regarding stage dance. We can’t forget the extraordinary work of the three Alonso, Alicia, Alberto, and Fernando, in promoting ballet here.

But modern dance was something else. The first director of the National Theater, the beloved Dr. Isabel Monal, recently recalled that many of those who attended the first performances said that this was not dance.

If one looks in perspective, Ramiro Guerra and his colleagues, teachers, choreographers and dancers were pioneers, authentic architects of a titanic work of socialization, creation, training.

Today Cuba is one of the pillars of modern and contemporary dance on the continent, an indisputable reference. And we have to thank the founding teachers for that. And to the company they created.

First the Modern Dance Department of the National Theater, then the National Dance of Cuba, then the current Contemporary Dance. Several denominations, one company. Because throughout these decades the public and critics have witnessed the evolution of a poetics, which built its bases in the Cuban technique of modern dance, another authentic achievement of that movement, but it didn’t stop there, because it has been enhanced with multiple dialogues with creators, schools, styles.

The company has been the mother of many of the groups, whose creators were trained in Dance. And still at this point it’s perfectly possible to find dancers and choreographers from Cuban Contemporary Dance in almost every casts in the country.

Contemporary Dance of Cuba has been, in short, inspiration, reference, spur. It’s one of the emblems of Cuban culture. Since the founders to the current generations they have contributed a lot.

Translated by Amilkal Labañino / CubaSí Translation Staff

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