Portrait of the Cuban School of Ballet, a photographic tribute to the historic Cuban National Ballet School released by Nazraeli Press, explores the characteristics that distinguish the Cuban style, its rich cultural inheritance, and legacy.
The Cuban National Ballet School in Havana is one of the largest ballet schools in the world, and one of the most prestigious. The School was established in 1962 in a collective effort financed by the revolutionary government to revive Cuba’s languishing cultural programs. Founders, Alicia and Fernando Alonso devised and codified a methodology based in the traditions of the European schools and adapted to express a Latin sensibility and aesthetic.
In 1965, Ramona de Saá, a founding member of the Ballet Nacional de Cuba became the school’s director and ballet mistress. Since then, De Saá has continued to train world-class dancers in the Cuban method and is today regarded as one of the world’s most knowledgeable experts in dance teaching.
Some of the world’s greatest dancers have trained at the School, with graduates dancing at The Royal Ballet of London, American Ballet Theatre, San Francisco Ballet, Boston Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada, and many other important companies.
Beautifully printed in duotone, with English and Spanish language texts throughout, Portrait of the Cuban School of Ballet presents 46 of Rebekah Bowman’s most beautiful and poignant photographs of the School, its founder Alicia Alonso, teachers, and its students, providing an important and timely record.
Rebekah Bowman is a social documentary photographer living in Berkeley, CA. In 2012, she traveled to Cuba for the first of many visits. In 2013 work-in-progress was exhibited at the Museum for Performance and Design in San Francisco and at the SF World Affairs Council. With Ministry of Culture authorization, the work was exhibited at the José Martí Memorial Museum as part of the 2014 Havana International Ballet Festival.
For book information: Nazraeli Press
For the photographer: rbowmanphotographer.com