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Havana Rakatan

Hotminute’s Rachel, hits London’s Sadlers Wells for the debut of Havana Rakatan a dazzling display of Cuban passion!

Think of Cuba, and what springs to mind? Sunny climes and equally sunny-dispositioned people? The exotic charm of days gone by? A vibrant mix of African, Amerindian and Spanish art and culture? Hmm… stereotyping much? Well, I can’t say I’ve been there before (read my mini-rant about never having visited the Caribbean on page 14 of this issue) so I’m not entirely sure if that is a bit of a touristy, tick box-style list of all things Cuba. But let me tell you that, even if it is, the people behind ‘Havana Rakatan’ aren’t shying away from that image at all, but rather embracing it!

Knowing very little about the show other than the fact it is now in its fifth (yes, FIFTH!) season in London, I went to see ‘Havana Rakatan’ on an overcast Wednesday evening, feeling as though I was probably in for an entertaining couple of hours. I went along with Aish, who is the dancer in our group of girlfriends (you know there’s always one with the magic legs!). All either of us could hope for going by the posters was that the music and dancing would lift our mid-week spirits. And honestly? We weren’t disappointed in the slightest, as ‘Havana Rakatan’ is hot, hot, HOT!

The costumes, hair and makeup were brilliantly put together, the music was simply amazing (never have I desperately wanted to get up and dance so much at a theatre before!)

From the get-go, we were transported to the capital’s bayside to first witness the dance troup, and then taken on a whirlwind two-act journey. A journey that took us from Cuba’s history rooted in slavery and Spanish colonisation through to the 1940s and, finally, the current day. All this was accompanied by some of the most fantastic pieces of music and dance I’ve seen on a West End stage. The costumes, hair and makeup were brilliantly put together, the music was simply amazing (never have I desperately wanted to get up and dance so much at a theatre before!) and the dancers? Oh. My. Hot. Word. Just amazing!

I absolutely loved the care and attention put into the little details in the show – credit goes to director Nilda Guerra and her crew. Particular standouts for me were singer Geidy Chapman (what a voice!), and adorable stage duo Mariluz Ramirez Perez and Yoanis Reinaldo Pelaez Tamayo, who had some of the best moments in the entire show.

Havana Rakatan025 cropped 300x251 Havana Rakatan

The costumes, hair and makeup were brilliantly put together, the music was simply amazing (never have I desperately wanted to get up and dance so much at a theatre before!)

Back in Issue 5, I was raving about another amazing Sadler’s Wells production called ‘The Merchants of Bollywood’, also a runaway hit for the company. Once again, they bring you theatre gold that is not to be missed – do go and see ‘Havana Rakatan’ while you can. If you head down there on a Tuesday evening, you could even stay back for a free salsa lesson open to audience members on the night. Can’t say fairer or hotter than that!

Addicted to dance, see what else Sadlers' has to offer;

Sadlers Wells Online

 

Words: Rachel S.

Photography provided by Sadlers Wells

 

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