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The unique style of Cuban ballet is galvanizing the world of dance in the United States, Europe, Latin America, and beyond. This beautifully illustrated book explores the history of Cuban ballet by focusing on the life and career of the indomitable Alicia Alonso. It also spotlights many of the young dancers who are changing the face of ballet with their superb technique, impeccable work ethic, and spectacular performances: Lorena Feijoo, Lorna Feijoo, Joan Boada, Taras Domitro, Jose Manuel Carreo, Rolando Sarabia, and Carlos Acosta to name but a few.

While focusing on the artistry and spirit of Cuban dancers, both within and out of Cuba, Octavio Roca deftly explores the political realities artists face in Cuba and why so many need to leave their beloved home to reach their full potential, taking their grace, beauty, strength, and style with them. Cuba's loss has become the worlds gain.

A widely respected authority on the arts, Roca has served on the juries of dozens of international festivals and performing arts competitions, including the International Ballet Festival in Havana, his native city. Octavio Roca studied at Emory University and Georgetown University, has taught philosophy at the University of Miami and Barry University, and is now chair of the Arts and Philosophy Department at Miami Dade College. He lives in Miami Beach.

Table Of Contents:

Foreword by Alicia Alonso 8

Foreword by Mikhail Baryshnikov 14

Acknowledgments 16

Introduction: Cuban Memories 18

Alicia 29

Interlude: Before the Alonsos 56

Ballet Nacional de Cuba: A New Company for a New World 59

Interlude: Theme and Variations 110

Cuca's Story and the Paris Incident 114

Interlude: Alicia Alonso, Dancemaker 124

Lorena, Lorna, and the Feij Effect 135

Interlude: Four Jewels, Three Graces, and a Rebel 164

All Those Cuban Men 177

Giselle 200

Dancing with a Cuban Accent 221

Notes 238

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