One of the world's top ballet companies will stop at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts next week. But they're not Russian; they're not even European. They hail from Havana, Cuba.
The Cuban National Ballet's production of "The Magic of Dance" will feature the most beloved excerpts from 19th century ballets like "Swan Lake," "Don Quixote," "The Sleeping Beauty," "Coppélia" and "Giselle."
Following its engagement in Orange County, the company will move to Los Angeles to perform "Don Quixote" in its entirety from June 23 to 26.
The company was founded in 1948 by renowned ballerina and choreographer Alicia Alonso, and has quickly risen to global prominence.
"I think we have a really strong ballet technique at our school," said Viengsay Valdés, prima ballerina of the Cuban National Ballet. "It's one of the most renowned ballet schools, and all Cuban [male] dancers are very strong. The ballerinas have powerful legs and strong angles and turns and jumps. Plus we have that passion for dance; the musicality."