Rosie Herrera at Ballet Hispanico

This season Ballet Hispanico offers four programs that range from Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s sure-fire Sombrerisimo to a world premiere by relatively unknown Miguel Mancillas.

In between is Rosie Herrera’s Show.Girl. A daring new voice on the landscape of contemporary dance, Herrera has produced gritty, surprising works that have an absurdist quality yet are sharply focused. Her Dining Alone shed light on all kinds of craziness around food, from chewing a friend’s hair as though it were pasta to stepping on empty plates on a long pathway.

With that same zany aesthetic, Show.Girl. explores the idea of the female performer as entertainer. Herrera herself took a job as a showgirl at the age of 16. In this interview in Dance Magazine, she says about the experience, “It taught me a work ethic and the basics of being an entertainer. High-quality craft can be transformative… Cabaret taught me the power of humor and how you can utilize humor to manipulate the audience.”

Show.Girl. photo by Grant Halverson © ADF

Show.Girl. photo by Grant Halverson © ADF

Her imagination knows no bounds. Some see an affinity to Pina Bausch, with her pungent gestural vocabulary, surreal images, motley crew of obsessive individuals, and extravagant non-sequiturs. But Herrera, who is based in Miami, draws deeply on her Latina roots. The result is a strong spicy voice that reveals the dark underside of human behavior—as well as its light side.

Ballet Hispanico’s season runs from April 14 to 26 at the Joyce. For info and tickets, click here.

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