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XXIII International Ballet Festival of Miami

The 23rd International Ballet Festival of Miami (IBFM) 2018 is a cultural gem of South Florida presenting performances and an array of other activities in various venues throughout the region featuring the best ballet, modern and contemporary companies and artists including Principal Dancers from Europe, South America, Mexico and the USA, receiving local & international rave reviews.

The IBFM opened with a VIP Cocktail Reception featuring the unveiling of the Official IBFM Poster created by Cuban Artist, Javier Dubrocq, Saturday, July 28 at 8 p.m. with his dance-inspired fine arts exhibition at the beautiful, historic Miami Hispanic Cultural Arts Center.

Five magnificent performances thrilled audiences this year; “IBFM Youth Gala”, featuring young Florida ballet competition medalists at the Lehman Theater, Saturday, Aug. 4 @ 7pm;. Two “Contemporary Performances” featuring five (5) companies from, Italy, Mexico and USA including Grace Arts Center, "Encuentros," which paired classical Spanish guitarist, Alberto Puerto, for the first time with another award-winning composer and guitarist, Jose Luis de la Paz, with Niurca Marquez, Flamenco dancer and choreographer of 'Nu Flamenco' in Miami. Niurca danced to Alberto's interpreted composition 'La Folias de Espana' and 'Fandango' by Manuel Maria Ponce followed by Jose Luis' composition of 'La Nina de mis Ojos;' her costume was designed by Cristina Galan (see picture above taken by Simon Soongh). Grace Arts FL presented at both contemporary programs at the Manuel Artime Theater, Saturday, Aug. 11 @ 8:00 pm & Amaturo Theater Broward Center for the Performing Arts, Sunday, Aug. 12 @ 5:00 pm. The IBFM Finale featured two Spectacular Performances of the stars of renowned ballet companies from Austria, England, Italy, Holland, Spain, Philippines, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Argentina, Uruguay & USA, the “Ballet Stars Classical Grand Gala”, Saturday, Aug. 18 @ 8:00 pm. at the Fillmore Miami Beach Jackie Gleason Theater & the “Festival Closing Gala of the Stars” Sunday, Aug. 19 @ 5:00 pm. at the Miami Dade County Auditorium.

Each year at the Gala Performances, IBFM presents “A Life for Dance” Lifetime Achievement Award to a legendary figure of the dance world. This year was dedicated to IBFM Founder Pedro Pablo Pena who passed away in March 2018 and the “Criticism and Culture of Ballet” Dance journalism Award was bestowed upon the internationally acclaimed publication, “Dance Magazine,” accepted by Editor in Chief, Jennifer Stahl.

The IBFM also presents a dance film series, “Restless Creature” highlighting the amazing career and trials of the great NYCB ballerina, Wendy Whelan, August 4 & 5 at Miami Beach Cinematheque.

Free Events at the Miami Hispanic Cultural Arts Center included the film “An Extraordinary Journey” the story of the world renowned Cuban Principal ballet star Fernando Bujones, August 3 /7pm; two dance book presentations & signings by award winning journalists and critics: "Victoria Ellis, Cosmic Ballerina” by Mexican Journalist Patricia Aulestia, telling the incredible real story of one of the most famous dancers in post-revolutionary Mexico, August 10 /8pm; and “Dance in Miami II” by Orlando Taquechel (former Miami Herald critic) documenting the inside story of Miami’s diverse dance world and the enduring influence of international dancers and choreographers. Taquechel was interviewed by Roger Salas, journalist of the distinguished Spanish newspaper, 'El Pais,' August 17 8pm.

This blog was informed in part by the press release of the International Ballet Festival of Miami published in August 2018. Photos included in this blog re "Encuentros" were taken by Simon Soong.

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