Probably, one of the most monumental sculptures that exist in Havana is dedicated to the prima ballerina assoluta, Alicia Alonso. Located at the entrance of the Gran Teatro de La Habana, it is a beautiful representation of who is the most recognized Cuban dancer in the world.
It is made of bronze and captures one of the most emblematic moments in the life and work of Alicia Alonso: her representation in the classical ballet Giselle. Created by the Cuban sculptor and National Prize of Plastic Arts, José Villa Soberón, is the living representation of a dancer in full function. But not just any ballerina. She is the majestic dancer, elegant and precise in her dance.
The work, inaugurated in 2018, was revealed by Alicia herself and four girls from the Cuban Ballet School. In the words of Dr. Eusebio Leal during the unveiling of the sculpture, the moment was unique and exceptional and defined it as the recognition of the people to Alicia, who took the exercise of her vocation to the whole world, with simplicity and poise, but with an iron will, not only to sustain herself, but also to her company.
Giselle is an iconic ballet of romanticism in dance and it was precisely this work that launched the legendary Cuban dancer to world fame. Premiered in 1841 at the Paris Opera, Giselle is one of the main titles within the repertoire of the National Ballet of Cuba, inside and outside the Island. It is therefore no coincidence that the artist chose this classic to represent the figure.
And although Villa Soberón is known for other sculptures in Havana such as John Lennon sitting in the park of 15 and 8 of Vedado in the city, the Benny Moré of the Paseo de Prado in Cienfuegos or the Ernest Hemingway in the bar of the Bar Floridita in Old Havana, without a doubt, that of Alicia Alonso is one of her greatest creations.
Another work that makes Havana an even more special city in its almost 500 years.