Artistic communities from Merida and Havana shared art experiences in a new cultural exchange that will benefit the artistic communities of both cities, during the “Mérida in Havana” program, in which the Mérida City Hall is taking a representative delegation of Yucatecan culture to the Caribbean island, the result of an exchange with the Cuban Art Factory.
About two thousand people, including Cubans and tourists, filled the Art Factory with their presence to learn about Merida’s cultural offerings, in which the talent and skill of the Merida City Hall Folkloric Ballet stood out and was applauded by people of all ages. In addition to their skill in the performance of sones, Jarabes, and the Jarana Yucateca, the dancers wore their “day of the dead” make-up, in allusion to the festivities of the faithful departed.
Visitors came and went throughout the site in search of various experiences on the same night. There were those who took selfies with the stilt walkers who proudly wore the typical Yucatecan regional costume, the women in different colored dresses, and the men in Filipinas, as well as in front of the traditional altar dedicated to the faithful departed, with Yucatecan and Mexican allegories, which was set up in the entrance hall of the multidisciplinary Cuban space.
In the words of the Director of Culture, Antrop. Irving Berlín Villafaña, who heads the visiting group, Yucatán and Cuba are two sister regions in musical sentiment that should get to know each other and enrich each other more in other aspects, such as arts education, food, and visual arts.
He said that the Cuban Art Factory is a plural space where all the expressions of love of the people and the concerns of the young and the avant-garde have a place.
Alfonso Valdés “X Alfonso”, composer and creator of the Art Factory, was recognized for the trust and support to continue with this type of exchange. “These days will be beneficial for tourism activity, the artistic communities of the two regions, and for new audiences.”
The Cuban Art Factory offers art and culture in a similar way to the municipal “La Noche Blanca” program, only that it opens its doors every weekend and in a single space, which operates as a former oil factory that has been signified as a contemporary cultural movement and interdisciplinary creation.
The Cultural Director shared Mayor Renán Barrera’s vision of being able to carry out innovative and avant-garde activities in Mérida such as those offered by the Art Factory. “That is why we are accumulating experiences in this visit,” he added.
As part of the journey, this Friday the Mérida Culture authorities visited the National School of Music and the School of Dance, to learn about the study programs, seedlings, promotion of dancers, and high-performance management and cross programs to improve the development and sensibilities of children and youth in educational centers in Mérida.
The opening ceremony includes the program “Mérida en la Habana” as well as the exhibition “Los Mayas Eternos”, by Pedro Tec, who through 20 photographs recreates the image of the peninsular Maya, photographs with which he pays homage to our ancestors. There will also be a tasting of Yucatecan antojitos made by Yucatecan chefs headed by Raciel González Góngora.
Tomorrow, Saturday, as part of the activities, there will be a second presentation of the Ballet Folklorico del Ayuntamiento de Merida, a Yucatecan dinner and the fashion show of contemporary Yucatecan clothing “De Mérida a La Habana”, under the direction of Guillermo Alayon.