From a special place in the beautiful city of Rosario, the academy founded by Marlen Puello has trained hundreds of children and young people in the last two decades through a programme of personal development where they have a place until they are adults.
When you arrive at the headquarters of Cuba Ballet Rosario, in Entre Ríos 1553, you feel this mystique that joins together the academy, the educational side, with the home, a real house for those who dream of getting far in this difficult and complex art, and who, since they were little, have left their sweat on the stage in search of making it happen.
Comprehensive courses, the possibility of specialising in several dance styles and access to partial scholarships for those with limited means, are some of the premises that drive this centre today.
In an exclusive dialogue with Prensa Latina from the headquarters of the school, Michel Puello, one of the members of this institution, told that this was a small project driven by his aunt Marlen in its beginnings with only 10 students, and with time it has established itself.
The idea, he said, was that the methodology was from Cuba and from the teacher Alicia Alonso. The director, Marlen Puello, brought the methodology to Rosario and there started up this dream with a lot of work and sacrifice, with rehearsals even on Sundays.
The school works in the same way as an educational centre, from March to December. In July they do a show in the El Círculo theatre and another one in December as an end of year closure. Puello says that today they have several programmes within the institution for children from the age of three, to women from any place and many men have also signed up. From classical ballet to ballroom dancing and modern dance. In the institution the Cuban methodology is danced and taught, as well as Flamenco, including urban and Caribbean rhythms.
Currently, adds Puello, “we have around 20 teachers of several nationalities; Argentinean, Cuban, Mexican, Peruvian, from everywhere. The institution opens its doors to all, from teachers to students”.
With an enrolment of between 300 and more than 500 students, in the 21 years of its journey its proponents have tried to sustain the academy and only with the number that signed up, with no extra support.
Now they have partial scholarships, that consist of the institution providing half the registration fees and half the class fees for all students from public schools, both primary and secondary, on Saturday mornings and midweek.
This arose more than a year ago through the initiative of one of the teachers, and it has been with a lot of sacrifice.
Last year there were 100 students and before starting 2018 there were already more than 100 people signed up. “Beyond financial issues, this deals with something social to support the town of Rosario a little”, explains Puello.
In this way we have reached many who today have access to dancing, this has been a big achievement.
Cuba Ballet Rosario has an extensive repertoire and starts with the basics. Its students spend 10 and 15 years within the institution and they have achieved dancing in the Teatro Colón as Magali Barati, who is now part of the Mercosur ballet with Maximiliano Guerra.
Guerra has also contributed to this project as he did in 2016 when he participated in the educational day for the 20th anniversary of Cuba Ballet Rosario, alongside his wife Patricia Baca, the director of the Mercosur Ballet.
The project has a comprehensive, stable ballet made-up of male and female dancer. In May 2016, the Deliberative Municipal Council of the town, on its 20th anniversary, granted the academy an award for their support of culture, naming Cuba Ballet as a “distinguished institution” in the town. (PL)
(Translated by Donna Davison. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) – Fotos: Prensa Latina