Cuba’s Malpaso presents rare SoCal shows
Malpaso Dance Company, one of Cuba’s hottest contemporary dance ensembles, brings a slice of Havana to Southern California with three performances on Thursday, March 28 through Saturday, March 30 at The Wallis’ Bram Goldsmith Theater. The scintillating program of movement and music, reflecting the company’s commitment to working with leading international choreographers while also nurturing new voices in Cuban choreography, includes Ocaso by Artistic Director Osnel Delgado and Ser by company member Beatriz Garcia.
Malpaso also presents Fielding Sixes by the legendary late choreographer Merce Cummingham, adapted for eight dancers and re-staged by Jamie Scott, and Tabula Rasa by famed Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin, who traveled to Cuba in 2018 specifically to crystalize the re-staging of this seldom performed 30-year-old master work.
Malpaso, founded in 2012 and celebrated for its blend of modern, ballet, urban and jazz dance styles, is hailed as “driven and invigorating” (The New York Times) and “lusciously agile” (DC Metro). This is only the second time the Havana-based company has appeared in Los Angeles, following its local debut in 2017.
“Malpaso Dance Company has earned an international reputation for its bold and exhilarating performances, diverse repertoire and exceptional skill,” said Wallis Artistic Director Paul Crewes. “The Wallis is pleased to showcase this superlative dance company.”
Malpaso is one of Cuba’s most sought-after dance troupes. Emphasizing a collaborative creative process, the company tours with 11 dancers and is led by its original three founders – resident choreographer and Artistic Director Osnel Delgado, Executive Director Fernando Sáez and dancer and co-founder Daileidys Carrazana – who left the state-sponsored Danza Contemporanea de Cuba in 2011. When they created the independent modern dance company, friends expressed concern that it was a “misstep” (malpaso) to launch a new troupe since they would possibly loose government funding and have to assume fundraising responsibilities. But, instead, the global-facing company has expanded the concept of what Cuban culture can be when it reaches outward and embraces the myriad styles of dance.
Single show tickets are $35-$105. Visit TheWallis.org, call 310-746-4000, or stop by in person at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts Ticket Services Office located at 9390 N. Santa Monica Blvd., Beverly Hills, CA 90210.
Photo: Cuba’s Malpaso Dance Company. Photo by Nir Arieli.