I recently had the pleasure of sitting in the audience at Cas di Cultura as Simadanza presented it annual dance recital starring all age groups and all dance styles.
The show went from irresistible bundles of energy, the tiniest students, dressed colorfully as circus clowns, with an acrobatic ‘Weekend at the Circus,’ to the fun ‘Dusk till Dawn,’ with music by Caro Emerald, and Caribbean Streetdance, where the stage was filled with teenage dancers creating their own video clip.
The whole room was filming. Mom and pop were proud. I took some pictures not to stand out as unfriendly.
The two last pieces were special. One was a revival of a dance created for Wilma Kuiperi in 1989, Ode, with a still very relevant message of our yearning for Freedom & Joy.
The last piece was dedicated to the late husband of Astrid Salazar, Frank Hoogland, a wals, incorporating all elements of the island’s contemporary folklore into a big tableau with more than a dozen dancer.
The thank-you list in the printed program is long. Many people contributed their time and talent to this mega production, especially the choreographers: Ina Profet, Tracy Pietersz, Wilma Kuiperi Janen, Kimberly Milan, and legendary Astrid Salazar.
The program lists the dancers of all ages, the volunteers, and the parents who drove their kids to after-school activities for many years.
Watching Un Anochi Colorido Cu Simadanza, it was plain to see that once you drive your kids to all those ballet classes for more than a dozen years, at age 18, they become incredibly graceful and lyrical and absolutely stunning, though they started out tumbling and bouncing, they end up fluid and poetic.
Kudos parents. It was all worth it.
And kudos to tireless teachers who tolerate ducklings and persevere with the absolute faith they will in time transform into swans.