Danzabierta expresses wonder, frustration in “Malson”

The Cuban modern dance troupe Danzabierta returned to Miami for a single night last Thursday, performing Malson, an urban fantasy inspired by Havana. The show at the Miami Dade County Auditorium drew an enthusiastic audience of approximately 200, a tribute to the appeal of the company and the work of the Copperbridge Foundation, which presents Cuban cultural events, including a Danzabierta concert in 2014. (This concert was co-presented by the Centro Cultural Español as part of their Cuba Ahora series on contemporary Cuban culture.)

Malson, like Showroom, the psychological, satirical portrait of Cuban cabaret dancers that the troupe performed here two years ago, is also by its Spanish director Susana Pous, and shares some of the same theatricality, though in a very different style. Instead Malson was an impressionistic multi-media portrait of a city, with the five dancers interacting with a stream of video on a stage-spanning screen – created by famed musician and artist X Alfonso, who also did the urgent and dramatic score. Although Pous’ creation is very different, the inspiration is reminiscent of 24 Hours and a Dog, also an urban portrait by Cuba’s Osnel Delgado for his Havana company Malpaso, another leading Cuban modern troupe that Copperbridge has presented here.

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