Danzantes Unidos is delighted to welcome back the renowned Mexican Folklorico dancer and choreographer, Amalia Viviana Basanta Hernandez to DUF 2017. Maestra Basanta Hernandez was born in Mexico City, the daughter of Mexican choreographer, Amalia Hernandez, and Argentine writer, Joaquin Basanta Crece. She began her dance training at the age of five, studying classical ballet under Nellie Happee. At age thirteen, Ms. Basanta Hernandez joined the National Ballet of Mexico under the direction of Guillermina Bravo. She pursued her interest in contemporary dance, studying abroad with Alvin Nikolai, Murray Louise, Hanya Holm and Alvin Ailey.
In 1977, she joined the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez as a dancer, where she revamped some of the works and repertoire created by her mother, Amalia Hernandez. In 1979, Ms. Basanta Hernandez became a soloist and later the Artistic Coordinator of the company for 15 years. In addition, she directed the school of the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico for ten years. While with the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico, Ms. Basanta Hernandez researched and produced such ballets as “Navidad Mexicana,” “Tarahumara,” “Sones,” and “Gustos de Guerrero.” She has also created modern dance choreographies based on Mexican folk traditions, including “De Caña al Carnaval” and “Tierra de Mis Pasiones.”
She was also a soloist by invitation of the “Le Sorilege” Dance Company in Montreal, Canada. In 2002, Ms. Basanta opened her new dance school, “Academia de Danza Amalia Hernandez” with over 300 dance students. She continues to dance to this day. Honors bestowed upon Ms. Basanta Hernandez include the Cesar Chavez award from the University of Michigan, and the Artistry of Mexico Award presented by the United States Congress. She has also received the “Ulama” Award for her participation in the “Encuentro de Arte y Cultura” event by the Mexican Secretary of Education.
Guerrero: Tierra Caliente, Amarillas y Gusto (Ages 18+)
Maestra Amalia Viviana Basanta Hernandez will be sharing the suite “Guerrero – Amarillas y Gusto” from the repertoire of the Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez. Guerrero (Tierra Caliente) Costa Grande is home to “Tierra Caliente” (The Hot Lands) where the sound of Mexican music (Son) is masterfully executed by world renowned musicians and the dancing is a variation of the common son, found in most of Central and southern Mexico. The music is light and mainly played on violins or wind bands. “Las Amarillas” Most Chilenas, especially from the Tixtla municipality have names that refer to animals particular to the local fauna: Birds, Ducks, Cats and Iguanas. The dances display movements that are made by these animals. In this choreography, the women represent calandra larks (birds) that are flying from tree to tree. The dance displays a very close association with nature. This suite is very classical/technical in nature, but captures essence of the folk dances from Guerrero. “El Gusto” El Gusto is fast “son” that is saturated with intricate footwork, partnered choreography and also given to improvisation. The son “Calentano” as the style is known is competitive in nature and is usually danced on a “Tarima” (Wooden platform). Please note: All participants must arrive in proper dance attire. Men will need to bring their boots, paliacate and Guerrero hat. Women will need to bring their shoes, practice skirt and paliacate.
DUF 2017 “Alma Indigena” will take place on April 7, 8 & 9 in Fresno, CA.
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Early Registration now through 12/20/16
Regular Registration 12/21/16 through 2/8/17
Late Registration 2/9/17 through 3/30/17