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Our Real Latin America Expert

Annabel Kemp
Annabel Kemp - Product & Marketing

Annabel lived and taught in Bogotá for a year and fell in love with Colombia. She’s travelled to Peru and Chile and is the newest member of our marketing team.

Acosta Danza_Satori_Photo Enrique Smith Soto (2)

This week the Cuban-based Acosta Danza ignite the stage of Sadler’s Wells with their exhilarating performance of Evolution. The company was created and directed by the world-renowned Carlos Acosta, who makes a guest appearance in the last of four wonderfully contrasting movements.

The opening piece Satori, choreographed by Raúl Reinoso, draws on the Zen Buddhist concept of spiritual illumination. The ominously dark set reveals a partially illuminated sheet which wraps and twists around the restless, writhing bodies of the dancers. Zeleidy Crespo takes centre stage, undulating through sequences with astounding grace and power. Accentuating the intensity of the performance is a thrumming score from Pepe Gavilondo, which seamlessly combines electronic, acoustic and folk sounds. The music is met by rhythmically throbbing lights, which plunge the audience into darkness before unveiling blinding, split-second flashes of sensually contorted bodies. This abstract journey through movement is nothing short of electrifying.

 

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The second work Paysage, Soudain, la nuit feels lighter, with playful choreography from Pontus Lidberg. Performers wander dreamily through gold-lit corn fields which stretch the length of the stage, regularly jolted from their pensiveness by impulsive, childlike games. Duos of dancers take turns chasing, ducking and weaving through the group, who shake and bump across the floor in unison. Music from Leo Brouwer and Stefan Levin is at once beautifully simplistic and pleasingly hypnotic, with delicate guitar counterpoints entwining as fluidly as the dancers themselves. This twilit celebration of youth emanates a warm, joyful innocence.

 

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Faun had the audience spellbound. With innovative contemporary choreography from Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, this experimental work is set deep in the violet-hued woodlands. In the midst of this wilderness appears Carlos Luis Blanco, soon joined by Zeleidy Crespo in an encounter which is fierce as it is inquisitive. The narrative takes on a mythical air, their lithe bodies exploring and testing each other, moving as one with impressive feats of strength before diving apart erratically. Set to Debussy with additional music from Nitin Sawhney, the score is at once primeval and modern, heightening the mysticism of this deeply instinctual, sensual and bewildering piece.

 

 

 

Worlds apart but no less impressive is Christopher Bruce’s closing work Rooster, which sees the much-anticipated arrival of Carlos Acosta. Perhaps playing with our heightened expectations, Acosta slides unceremoniously onto the stage in an exaggerated, head-jerking (and very funny) rendition of a preening cockerel. This comical battle of the sexes pays homage to the incredible soundtrack of the 60s and 70s, set to music by the Rolling Stones. Puffed up chests and inflated egos propel the brightly-clad male dancers across the stage, posturing before the ironic amusement of the onlooking women. Female dancers respond by whipping and teasing with fluffy red scarves, leaving a spray of feathers in their wake. Strutting and clucking across the stage with an irresistible swagger, Acosta is hard to take your eyes off and ends the night with a bold, memorable flourish.

 

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Evolution plays at Sadler’s Wells, London, from 18 – 23 November 2019, and returns to tour across the UK in March 2020. Some dancers pictured differ from names given.

Discover the music, art and dance of Cuba on a Tailor Made Journey or Escorted Group Tour with Journey Latin America.

 

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Real Latin America Experts

  • Ben Line
    Ben Line - Travel Consultant

    Ben fell in love with Latin America on a six month backpacking trip from Colombia to Mexico in 1995. Since then he has explored most of South America, including living in Peru for a year. He is now Manager of the Tailor-made Department.

  • Chris Rendell Dunn
    Chris Rendell-Dunn - Travel Consultant

    Anglo-Peruvian Chris grew up in Lima and spent much of his adult life in between London and Cusco as a tour leader, before settling permanently in our Sales team.

  • Lina Fuller
    Lina Fuller - Travel Consultant

    Lina's passion for the continent where she was born really took off when she moved to Córdoba to study, spending the holidays travelling between Argentina and her native Colombia.

  • Hannah Donaldson
    Hannah Donaldson - Travel Consultant

    Having spent part of her childhood in Colombia and worked in Brazil and Costa Rica, Hannah's ties to Latin America run deep. Hannah is an invaluable part of our Group Tours team.

  • Paul Winrow Giffen
    Paul Winrow-Giffin - Travel Consultant

    After graduating in Computer Science, Paul spent seven months travelling from Colombia to Argentina and came home hooked on Latin America.

  • Mary Anne Nelson
    Mary Anne Nelson - Travel Consultant

    Born in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, Mary’s insider knowledge and dry sense of humour make her a highly valued member of the Tailor-made team.

Meet the team