Ballet Revolution is about to hit Australia with its synergy of explosive Cuban rhythms and spectacular dance technique!
We had a chance to check in with Australian Producer, Mark Brady, and Australian Choreographer, Aaron Cash to find out a little more about their journey, their contribution to the entertainment industry and this amazing show!
Mark Brady – Producer
Mark is a leading Australian producer with a passion for making live entertainment infused with cultural richness and diversity accessible to western audiences. He is a third generation entertainment industry promoter and producer who developed the theatrical show arm of the family business. His first success was Gaelforce Dance, which he co-created during the era of Riverdance and Lord of the Dance. It went on to tour Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada and spent three years touring Austria, Germany and Switzerland.
In London during the late 90s, Mark met Jon Lee, whom he collaborated with and director Toby Gough to re-produce and launch Lady Salsa in Australia which was a great success and spent most of its life touring Europe. Motivated by this success and inspired by several documentaries on Cuba, Mark along with Jon Lee and Toby Gough investigated the famous quarter in Havana, Buena Vista. Home to the intensely passionate music and dance for which Cuba is famous, they created an extraordinary show The Bar at Buena Vista featuring three legends from Buena Vista, who tell its history through music and dance. The Bar at Buena Vista has been touring the world for eight years.
We asked Mark …
What do you feel is the most captivating element of the show?
The power, the dynamics and passion of the dancers is incomparable to anything on the Australian stage. The Cuban flavour that flows through the dancers is intoxicating. The passion of every individual transcends onto the stage.
How do you see the Australian audiences responding to Ballet Revolución?
Having originally toured Australia in 2011, we have experienced the love Australian audiences have for the show. They loved it then and we expect them to love it even more now! The show has developed a lot over the years and we can’t wait to bring it to Australian audiences; it was great then and will be even better in 2013
The Cuban dancers have been described as ‘living’ dance – can you further comment?
In Cuba, dance is like breathing. They live and breathe dance it’s such a natural part of life. Along with music they are born with an unparalleled passion for it. Not just dance but the arts in general are such an integral part of the Cuban Nation. Even the worst Cuban dancers is amazing, it’s in their bones, it’s what they know how to do.
What inspiration can Australian dancers draw from this show?
The interaction between the audience and the dancers is so raw; there is no barrier between the performers allowing their passion to transcend to every audience member. The audience is drawn into the world of intense passion that is felt by Cubans whenever they dance.
Any tips for young Australian talent wishing to follow a similar career path as yourself?
It is definitely not a career path for everybody. I don’t think or consider it a job rather a way of life that you feel you have to do. To dedicate your life to show business takes a lot of commitment and passion. In order to forge a career the dedication must be there.
Aaron Cash – Choreographer
Originally from Brisbane, Aaron Cash is a talented performer and one of the original “Tap Dogs“. Early in his career, world renowned choreographer Kenny Ortega (Dirty Dancing and High School Musical 1& 2) cast Aaron in Cher’s Love Hurts Tour. This opportunity culminated in an impressive 10-year touring relationship as Cher’s lead dancer.
In the early 1990’s, Twyla Tharp hand-picked Aaron to become her personal Pas de Deux partner and the legendary Mikhail Baryshnikov added Aaron to their world tour.
His innovative and creative skills as a performer, choreographer, and artistic consultant are now highly sought after the world over. He has consulted in a variety of mediums, from his work with Wet Design (the company responsible for the Belagio fountain in Las Vegas) on their fountain at Steven Wynn’s latest luxury hotel in Macao, China to serving as the personal tango coach for Jolie Richardson on Nip/Tuck.
Aaron recently completed the role of the Matador in the Los Angeles Opera’s production of La Traviata. He has been featured in films such as Titanic and Hook, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and Bolt. He travels the world extensively, hosting, coaching and teaching choreographic and dance seminars.
We asked Aaron …
What drew you to this production / how did you become involved?
John Lee, producer of the show, who I have worked with on various shows from 1997 originally called me as he wanted my resume to broaden his options, then two days later he asked me to come to Cuba and audition dancers. I have been involved choreographing ever since.
Which elements of choreographing for Ballet Revolución have you found most challenging / most rewarding?
All challenging! This is the biggest event I have partaken in and was very overwhelmed by the task. But once I found I was more than capable and worked through my own insecurities I was able to relax into the role and really enjoy working with the Cuban dancers. I have a great working dance knowledge and have being able to utilize that has been an absolute dream.
As co-choreographer to Cuban dancers, have found any language or interpretational barriers?
Some of the dancers speak English so there hasn’t been too much of a barrier. Through the years my Spanish has definitely improved so the language barriers have definitely lessened.
What have you enjoyed the most about working on this production and with these dancers?
It has been an amazing healing experience for me. The dancers have shown me a great amount of appreciation a feeling that I have been able to reciprocate. In a time when dancing is no longer capable for me I am able to dance through them. I am so grateful for the dances empathy and warmth throughout this experience, we have truly become like a family.
Any tips for Australian dancers / choreographers wishing to follow a similar path to international success like yourself?
Don’t give up. It may be very hard in Australia due to the lack of industry opportunities but if you want it you can achieve it. Dancers have a short time period to be successful so go hard be hungry and don’t get discouraged. And remember to keep getting back up no matter how many times you hear the word no.
QPAC, Brisbane – Dates: Wed 19 – Sat 22 June
Tickets:A Reserve: Adult $101.30, Adult (12+) $81.80, School Groups (12+) $71.60. B Reserve: Adult $ 92.10, Conc $81.80, Adult (12+) $81.80, School Groups (12+) $71.60
State Theatre, Sydney – Dates: Tue 25 – Sun 30 June
Tickets: A Reserve: $98.90, B Reserve: $89.90, Conc $79.90, Groups (12+) $79.90, Student/Dance Schools (20+): $69.90 Tue & Wed night only
Bookings: www.ticketmaster.com.auor 136 100
Arts Centre Melbourne – Dates: Wed 17 – Sun 21 July
Tickets: Premium: $95.90, A Reserve: Adult $89.90, Conc $79.90, Groups (6+) $79.90, Youth U26 $49.90. B Reserve: Adult $79.90, Conc $69.90, Groups (6+) $69.90, Youth U26 $49.90
Bookings: www.ticketmaster.com.auor 1300 182 183
Her Majesty’s Theatre, Adelaide – Dates: Tue 23 – Sun 28 July
Tickets:A Reserve: $98.90, B Reserve: $89.90,Conc $79.90, Groups (8+) $79.90
Crown Theatre, Perth – Dates: Tue 30 July – Sun 4 August
Tickets: A Reserve: $98.90, B Reserve: $89.90, Conc $79.90, Groups (12+) $79.90, Students/Dance Schools: $69.90
The Arts Centre, Gold Coast –Dates: Wed 3 – Sat 6 July
The Events Centre, Caloundra – Dates: Mon 8 July
Empire Theatre, Toowoomba – Dates: Tuesday 7 July
Brolga Theatre, Maryborough – Dates: Tue 9 July
The Pilbeam Theatre, Rockhampton – Dates: Wed 10 July
Townsville Civic Theatre – Dates: Fri 12 July
Cairns Civic Theatre – Dates: Sat 13 July
Mackay Entertainment Centre – Dates: Sun 14 July
“Everything was done with effortless cohesion and
precision which made it all look so easy. Next plane
to Havana anyone?“
T h e Au s t r a l i a n , Au s t r a l i a