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Durham Performing Arts Center
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Ballet Hispanico to make American Dance Festival debut

by Michelle Tabnick
June 17, 2014
Durham Performing Arts Center
123 Vivian Street
Durham, NC 27701
919.688.3722

Featured Dance Company:

Ballet Hispanico
Ballet Hispanico (office)
167 West 89th Street
New York, NY 10024
212-362-6710
www.ballethispanico.org

Ballet Hispanico, recognized as the nation's leading Latino dance organization since 1970, will perform for the first time at the American Dance Festival at Durham Performing Arts Center on June 20-21 at 8pm, with a special Children's Matinee on June 21 at 1pm. Highlights of the program include Artistic Director Eduardo Vilaro's Danzón, which melds Cuban rhythms with jazz improvisation, as well as Show.Girl., the highly anticipated latest creation by ADF audience favorite Rosie Herrera. Durham Performing Arts Center is located at 123 Vivian Street, Durham, NC 27701. Tickets start at $10 and are available at www.dpacnc.com/events/detail/ballet-hispanico.

Since its inception, Ballet Hispanico's contemporary repertory has reflected the ever-changing diversity of Latino culture, showcased masterfully by some of "the most technically accomplished and musical dancers you'll find in the contemporary sphere" (The Washington Post).

The evening program at Durham Performing Arts Center includes:

"Show.Girl." by Rosie Herrera
Miami-based choreographer and 2013 Princess Grace Award winner Rosie Herrera presents her first work for Ballet Hispanico, one that uses the Cuban cabaret aesthetic to explore the Latina female identity. "Show.Girl." was commissioned by the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami-Dade County and the prestigious American Dance Festival, where Herrera has been invited to show her work for three consecutive years.

"Sombrerísimo" by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa
An absorbing exploration of identity, Sombrerísimo makes references to the surrealist world of the Belgian painter René Magritte, famous for his paintings of men in bowler hats. This athletic work for six male dancers was commissioned by New York City Center for the 10th anniversary of the Fall for Dance Festival.

"Sortijas" by Cayetano Soto to the music of Lhasa de Sela
Cayetano Soto, one of the most dynamic and groundbreaking Spanish choreographers of his generation, is known for his musicality, attention to detailed technique, and expressive choreography. In Sortijas, a darkly lush duet full of emotional complexity, he ponders the unavoidable pull of fate in our lives. Costume design is by Munich-based fashion designers Talbot Runhof.

"Danzón" by Eduardo Vilaro
Artistic Director Eduardo Vilaro has taken this traditional and quintessentially Cuban dance form and reinvented it with contemporary movement riffs. The work plays on the fusion of jazz improvisation and Cuban rhythms, which propel the dancers into a joyous celebration of music and movement.

ABOUT BALLET HISPANICO

Celebrating 43 years of dance and culture, Ballet Hispanico is recognized as the nation's premier Latino dance organization. Led by Artistic Director Eduardo Vilaro, the Company boasts a rich and diverse repertory of over 100 works by the foremost choreographers and emerging artists of our time. Building on founder Tina Ramirez's legacy, Ballet Hispanico explores the diversity of Latino culture through a fusion of Latin and contemporary dance powered by theatricality and passion. The Company has performed for an audience of nearly 3 million, throughout 11 countries and on 3 continents. Through the work of its professional company, school of dance, and community arts education programs, Ballet Hispanico celebrates the dynamic aesthetics of the Hispanic diaspora, building new avenues of cultural dialogue and sharing the joy of dance with all communities. For more information, visit www.ballethispanico.org. Follow Ballet Hispanico on Facebook and Twitter.

EDUARDO VILARO , a first generation Cuban-American, began as artistic director of Ballet Hispanico in August of 2009, becoming only the second person to head the company since it was founded in 1970. Mr. Vilaro has been part of the Ballet Hispanico family since 1985. As a dancer with the Ballet Hispanico Company, he performed throughout the U.S., Latin America and Europe and assisted founder Tina Ramirez with the development of dance education residencies. Mr. Vilaro is also an accomplished choreographer, having created works for the Ravinia Festival, the Chicago Sinfonietta, the Lexington Ballet, the Civic Ballet of Chicago, and over 20 ballets for Luna Negra Dance Theater, the company he founded in Chicago. He received a B.F.A. in Dance from Adelphi University and an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Art from Columbia College Chicago, where he served as Artist-in-Residence at The Dance Center. Mr. Vilaro was a guest speaker at the Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Leaders and the National Association for Latino Arts and Culture, and continues to speak to the growing need for cultural diversity and dance education.

ROSIE HERRERA first stepped onto the national dance stage at the Arsht Center in 2009 with a performance of her first evening-length dance theater work Various Stage of Drowning: A Cabaret, a commission by the Arsht Center, which earned her an invitation to the prestigious American Dance Festival that summer. This led to two additional ADF and Arsht commissions - Dining Alone and Pity Party - works that have earned Herrera praise as "one of the brightest, most original choreographic talents to emerge from Miami" (The Miami Herald). In 2013, the company made their New York City debut performing to a sold-out crowd performing at the invitation of the legendary Mikhail Baryshnikov. A Hialeah, Florida native of Cuban descent, Herrera is an Artistic Associate at the Arsht Center, where she has workshopped and performed all of her original works since 2008. Herrera began her performance career as a cabaret dancer working in nightclubs in Miami's Little Havana, and as a hip-hop dancer in concerts and music videos for various hip-hop and Latin artists. While earning her B.F.A. in Dance Performance at the New World School of the Arts, Herrera performed with a hybrid cabaret performance group called Circ X and trained as a classical opera singer.
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