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HAVANA, Oct 19 (PL) The people of Cuba parade this Saturday at the Gran Teatro de La Habana Alicia Alonso as a show of respect for the country’s most universal artist, recently deceased. Read more

Havana, Dec 21 (PL) The world’s most renowned Cuban artist, Alicia Alonso, celebrates her 98th birthday onFriday while the company she directs is rehearsing one of her favorite classics, The Swan Lake, an inescapable work in her career.

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havana-live-alicia-alonsoHAVANA, August 26  The National Ballet of Cuba will be touring cities all over Spain, headed by ballerina and choreographer Alicia Alonso, from September 16 to November 7. “We’re going to Spain with great enthusiasm. It’s been a long time since we’ve had the pleasure, the satisfaction of going there, but at last we’ll be there and we’re going to offer a very fine, very beautiful tour,” Alonso told EFE. The gifted ballerina has always been an advocate of classic dance, for which she founded her dance company in 1948.

The program in Spain will include the ballets “Carmen,” “Les Sylphides” and “Celeste,” and while 94-year-old Alonso is already immersed in rehearsals for the tour, she is also overseeing the “Swan Lake” production featuring premier danseur Dani Hernandez and prima ballerina  Anette Delgado.

The trip to the European country will open in Teatro del Canal in Madrid and will then be moving on to theatres such as the Cuenca Auditorium, Pamplona’s Baluarte, the Euskalduna Palace in Bilbao, and the Apolo in Burgos.
The tour will also go to cities such as León, Palencia, Zamora, Oviedo, Barcelona, Soria and Aranda del Duero, before its last show in San Sebastián.
http://www.latintimes.com/alicia-alonso-cuba-prima-ballerina-head-tour-national-ballet-spain-336514

havana-live-alonso--644x362HAVANA, August 23 (EFE)  Legendary Cuban ballerina and choreographer Alicia Alonso says the passage of time has not quelled her desire to dance, noting that ballet has been her “entire life” and is as vital to her as “eating and breathing.”

“I always have a desire to dance and now more than ever. The more time goes by, the more desire I have. I dance like crazy because I’ve danced since I was nine years old. Dance has been my entire life,” the 95-year-old Alonso told EFE in an interview at her office at Havana’s Cuban National Ballet, which she has headed since 1948.

Alonso is currently directing rehearsals ahead of her company’s upcoming tour of Spain, where it will put on performances of “Swan Lake” and “Don Quixote,” among other productions.

She recalled her affection for that Iberian nation, a country she began visiting with her family as a young child and where her passion for dance first took root.

“The first thing of dance I learned was Spanish dance, with castanets and everything. I loved it and I still do,” Alonso said.

She said that even as a young girl her desire was to “put on pointe shoes and dance classical ballet,” adding that she insisted on pursuing that dream even though when her career began to take off in the United States in 1938, with appearances in several Broadway musicals, she was advised to dance rumba.

Undaunted, Alonso joined New York’s American Ballet Theatre in 1940 and began a career that led to her becoming a principal dancer with that company and later being recognized with the rare title of prima ballerina assoluta.

Asked about the new stage of relations between Cuba, her “beloved” homeland, and the United States, where she cemented her place as an elite ballerina, Alonso said she hopes that the two nations continue to strengthen their bilateral ties and promote more cultural exchanges.

“If cultural exchanges are facilitated, we’d be more than happy and satisfied to tell them (the Americans) yes. We’d like to visit the United States soon with the Cuban National Ballet. We have great friends there,” she said.

Alonso, with the help of an assistant, continues to direct the company’s dancers at morning rehearsals, giving clear instructions about every step in the choreography despite vision problems that have afflicted her since she was a teenager.

“You can never be satisfied with how you dance. You always have to push yourself further and further.
The human body has to be made to do more,” Alonso insisted.