Cultural Explosion, Broadway goes Latin, Pike Performing Arts Center, Feb. 26.
Exuding energy, glitz, elegance, humor and pure pleasure, this is the kind of program to bring non-believers
to embrace dance.
Calderon and Christina Piedra founded New Jersey-based Cultural
Explosion 15 years ago to teach salsa. Five years ago they started a
touring company to show what selected Hollywood and Broadway musicals
would be like if they incorporated Latin dancing including salsa,
mambo, flamenco, merengue, bolero, Latin hustle, Latin jazz,
cha-cha-cha and rueda.
The standout was the modern and
contemporary bolero choreography and dancing by Bellasmin Aquine and
Ivan Taylor set on “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” as a
tribute to Lion King.
Smart choreography, electrifying
footwork, on-the mark lighting and costumes, and a merger of three
Latin dance companies filled the stage with production number
“tributes” to West Side Story, Lion King, Saturday Night
Fever, Sound of Music (yes, “My Favorite Things” to a
Mambo beat), Sweet Charity, Singing in the Rain (softshoe up scaled
to salsa footwork and Afro-Cuban), Chicago (upping the sizzle for
“All That Jazz”) and Grease [7-man cha-cha-cha footwork
and macho exuberance brought a roar from the already “into it”
Presented by IntoSalsa Dance Company
with Cultural Explosion [and Chicago Latin Street Dance Company
dancers. Bravo to IntoSalsa’s Erin Lamb
and Yang Xiao for bringing Cultural Explosion to Indianapolis and
reaching out to other Midwest salsa companies.