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Cows and drums of fire (Original basque group Deabru Beltzak)

The city's on the move again

When, in 1995, choreographer and director of the group Retazos Isabel Bustos organised the First International Meeting of Dance in Urban Landscapes: City in Movement, many critics were sceptical about the ambitious event’s future. A little over ten years later and the choreographic showcases, practical classes and performances against the beautiful backdrop of Havana’s historic centre are already eagerly awaited by companies and individual dancers from around the world.
This year, the host-dancers of Retazos joined forces with the early music group Ars Longa on the wooden cobbles outside the Captains Generals’ Palace to inaugurate the eleventh City in Movement event with an impressive premiere of the piece Heredades (Inheritance) inspired by life in nature, the origins of humanity and the concept of the event itself.
There was dance to suit all tastes, both inside buildings and in the open air. Apart from the diverse and picturesque street performances offered by groups like the Conjunto Folklórico de Camagüey, the Basque group Deabru Beltzak and the local Gigantería, the Cuban and international public were also able to see various exhibitions in the historic centre’s mansion museums that also served as venues for individual performances. Mexican Nidia Caro Molina displayed her agility on the floor of the Casa Benito Juárez. The roof terrace of the Casa Victor Hugo was the venue for Una mata en una lata (A plant in a can), an interesting cultural hybrid of the Conexión Habana project with national dancers directed by Franco-American Eugenia Kuffler. The Codanza company’s work Los dioses escuchan, (The gods are listening) a fantasy inspired by the work of Cuban artist Cosme Proenza, was shown at the Casa Oswaldo Guayasamín. The Independent Ballet Company of Mexico and Contradanza presented their work at Las Carolinas, headquarters of Retazos...

The original Basque group Deabru Beltzak came from San Sebastián to walk the streets of old Havana with their ironic parade of drummers dressed as surreal cows and sweeping dozens of spectators along with their energy and their synchronic progress to the rhythm of their director’s voice.

+ information pág. 162-165 The H Book 2007 08

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