Tuesday, June 23:
WIN Entertainment Centre
Dance runs through Alejandro Perez Fernandez’s veins and he is looking forward to bringing the passionate Latin rhythms of his homeland to Wollongong.
The 27-year-old is one of 19 dancers from Cuba that form Ballet Revolucion. They will launch their third tour of Australia at the WIN Entertainment Centre on Tuesday – their first visit to the Gong.
Ballet Revolucion is a combination of ballet and modern street dance, performed to the exciting music of Latin America and modern R&B and hip-hop from the likes of Rihanna, Usher, Chris Brown, Sia, Lorde and Beyonce. The music is played by the eight-piece Ballet Revolucion live band. The show has been all over Europe, to Singapore and Bahrain.
All the dancers have either a classical or modern dance background, training at Cuba’s prestigious Escuela Nacional de Arte (National School of Arts) or the Escuela Nacional de Ballet (National School of Ballet).
Fernandez graduated from the National School of Arts in Havana, majoring in folklore and contemporary dance. He has been a professional dancer for 10 years, working for renowned Cuban dance companies, Conjunto Folklorico Nacional, Rakatan and Danzares. With Danzares, he performed in the Latin American Salsa Festival in 2009 and toured Switzerland and Italy in 2010.
Fernandez says he started dancing at the age of 11.
“My cousin was a dancer, now she’s a dance teacher in Berlin, Germany,” he says.
“When she lived here in Cuba, she worked at the National School of Arts and she told me “OK, I think your body’s perfect, I think you have the rhythm, I think you can try to make something for you’.
“So I went to the school for six years.”
Fernandez says what he loves about dance is the different styles he can explore.
“I love so much contemporary style, but now I begin a challenge in ballet technique. This is a new space for me, because I am a contemporary dancer, not a ballet dancer.
“But in Ballet Revolucion we must do both. It’s so difficult to start a different technique, but it’s nice. I love hip-hop, Cuban styles, mambo, rumba. I am a complete dancer, I think.”
Fernandez says Ballet Revolucion is all about combining the dance and music styles to come up with something unique.
“We have lots of hits from the moment like Beyonce and Rihanna, but it’s this kind of music played by Cuban musicians. This is the magic because it’s different.”
Australia has embraced the show, attracting rave reviews since it first toured here in 2011.
Fernandez is excited about performing in Wollongong for the first time.
“The Australian fans have always been very supportive and I can’t wait for the fans to see the new dancers in this all-new show.
“The people are so cute, this is nice for us, we know this Australian energy and Wollongong will be the same.
The show has not toured the United States due to Cuba-US relations, but Fernandez is hopeful that will change.
“The relations are open right now, things must change. They [Americans] will enjoy our energy and our show. It would be nice in the future.”
By ANTONY FIELD, Illawarra Mercury
June 17, 2015