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My Barbarian wanted to take Miami on a boat ride. “We wanted to interact and be out in the public,” Alex Segade reveals over the phone from Los Angeles, where he just got out of rehearsal for My Barbarian’s first Miami show, coming up this Saturday at the Miami Light Project, as part of Miami-Dade College’s Museum of Art and Design’s “Living Together” performance series this season. ..

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Encuentro con Isabel y Ruben Toledo: mucho más que un nuevo look para el ‘Cascanueces’ del MCB

Photo: Isabel y Ruben Toledo con Alex Manning, bailarín del MCB; fotógrafo: Alexander Iziliaev.
Written by: Orlando Taquechel
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La tradicional temporada de Cascanueces del Miami City Ballet (MCB) tendrá algo nuevo este año. La compañía que dirige Lourdes López ha decidido renovar los diseños de la superproducción que llevan representado de manera consecutiva desde su incorporación al repertorio en noviembre de 1990 y para hacerlo contrató a los artistas cubanoamericanos Isabel y Ruben Toledo, reconocidos mundialmente y establecidos en Nueva York.

Como una primicia, el público de Miami tuvo la oportunidad de conocer de cerca a los Toledo, ver los diseños y disfrutar de una actuación del MCB, que permitió apreciar los trajes en movimiento, en el ambiente íntimo del Lynn & Louis Wolfson, II Theatre en Miami Beach.

Al inicio del encuentro López comentó que la colaboración consciente con socios externos a la compañía es importante “porque el riesgo es una gran parte del proceso creativo y necesitamos artistas que estén constantemente presionando para que nosotros los bailarines no nos quedemos en un solo lugar... porque si te quedas en un mismo lugar tarde o temprano te quedas atrás.”

Inmediatamente después aclaró que la coreografía de George Balanchine y la música de Tchaikovsky se mantienen intactas e invitó a los Toledo a sentarse a conversar con ella.

Los nuevos diseños de escenografía y vestuario tuvieron su estreno mundial el 7 de diciembre en el Music Center de Los Angeles, organización que co-comisionó el proyecto y se presentarán ahora en el Arsht Center for the Performing Arts en downtown Miami.

Entrando en materia, Isabel Toledo explicó que el punto de partida de ambos fue respetar el legado de los diseños originales pero que fue también importante para ella “estar segura de no estar haciendo algo ya que se había hecho” y lograr “un cambio en la sensación de los eventos reales, no solo en el aspecto visual”.

Para Ruben Toledo los diseños originales “tienen tanta inteligencia gráfica que solo queríamos hacerlos evolucionar y darles así un sentimiento especial para Miami, una ciudad tan consciente del diseño y con un clima que cambia la forma en que se ve el color.”

El libreto del primer “Cascanueces” (estrenado en Rusia en 1892) fue escrito por Ivan Vsevolozhsky y Marius Petipa, basándose en la adaptación hecha en 1844 por Alejandro Dumas (padre) del cuento El cascanueces y el rey de los ratones, escrito por Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann en 1816.

Todas estas fechas son significativas porque corresponden a la época de la Revolución Industrial y “las fiestas en casa con invitados para cenar surgieron también durante la Revolución Industrial” comentó Rubén, un apasionado confeso del contexto histórico. La Revolución Industrial marcó un punto de inflexión en la historia, de alguna manera modificando todos los aspectos de la vida cotidiana y fue también “un momento emocionante para la moda”.

Para rememorar el espíritu de la Revolución Industrial y complementar y engrandecer la teatralidad de las ideas de los Toledo la animación y la fantasía van a tener una parte importante en el Primer Acto donde las proyecciones de Wendell K. Harrington ayudarán a contar la historia. Por su parte, las luces de James K. Ingalls prometen una experiencia diferente, renovada y única.

En términos de color, las escenas de la fiesta del primer acto tendrán tonos más suaves y en el segundo acto “la tierra de los dulces es ahora un paraíso tropical” y agregan al unísono, “como Miami".

El diseño de escenografía fue un trabajo de meses… “construíamos un nuevo universo” afirma Rubén. En los primeros bocetos se aprecia la influencia del Palacio Vizcaya de Coconut Grove.

Ante la pregunta ¿te inspiraron los bailarines? La respuesta de Isabel es inmediata: "adoro el contacto humano con ellos y la forma en que actúan" y agrega - mientras comienza a mostrar los trajes – “el traje cobra una vida diferente según quien lo viste y es esto aún mas importante cuando hablamos de bailarines."

Para el traje de mazapán se preguntó ¿cómo hago para que el público sienta apetito? El de la danza española es de hermoso tafetán color chocolatey cuenta quellevó mucho tiempo hacerlo. Tafetán con un “rizo que no es en realidad de rizo" dice Isabel, aplicando una solución que ella utiliza en otro tipo de vestidos. Para la variación del Hada de Azúcar se decidió por algo más cercano a un traje de baile donde “hasta la corona viene de un sketch de Ruben” comenta complacida.

Lourdes afirma entonces que los bailarines sienten que el vestuario "les pertenece" y que no se sienten que "están dentro” como con frecuencia sucede y agradece a los Toledo que los trajes hayan resultado ser lo más ligero posible.

Al final, este encuentro con Isabel y Rubén Toledo no deja dudas sobre la magnitud del esfuerzo creativo detrás de los nuevos diseños para el “Cascanueces” del MCB. Definitivamente, un proyecto que es mucho más que un nuevo look para un favorito de siempre.

El MCB presentará “Cascanueces” en el Arsht Center for the Performing Arts Center del viernes 15 al domingo 24 de diciembre (13 funciones en total). Boletos a la venta en y


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