Rosie Herrera

Rosie Herrera is a Cuban-American dancer, choreographer and artistic director of Rosie Herrera Dance Theater in Miami. She is a graduate from New World School with a BFA in Dance Performance. She has been commissioned by The Miami Light Project, The Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Dance Place, Maui Arts and Cultural Center, Ballet Hispanico, Moving Ground Dance Theater, Houston Met Dance and the American Dance Festival (ADF) in 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2016.

Rosie is a classically trained lyric coloratura soprano and performs with the Performers Music Institute Opera Ensemble as well as choreographs and stages operas independently throughout Miami. With over a decade of experience in both dance and cabaret, she has collaborated on productions with The South Miami Dade Cultural Arts Center, New World School of the Arts, The University of Central Florida, Six Floor Ensemble, Zoetic Stage and the New World Symphony as well as with the interdisciplinary performance ensemble/avant- garde cabaret Circ X. She has also collaborated with filmmakers Adam Reign, Lucas Leyva, George Echevarria and Clyde Scott to create original short films and music videos.

Her company has been presented by the Northrop Dance Series, Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts, Baryshnicov Arts Center, Texas A & M University, Duncan Theater, The Annenburg Center in Philadelphia, Gotham Dance at Skirball and Focus Dance at The Joyce NYC as well as by The American Dance Festival at the Joyce NYC in 2016.

Rosie is a 2016 USArtist Sarah Arison Choreographic Fellow, a 2010 MANCC choreographic fellow, a 2014 Bates Dance Festival Artist in residence and a 2011 and 2016 Miami Dance Fellow.  She was awarded a Princess Grace Choreographic Fellowship for her work with Ballet Hispanico. She has also set work on Moving Ground Dance Theater and Houston Met Dance.

Returning Choreographic Fellow | January 25 - February 8, 2018

Make Believe

Rosie Herrera returns to MANCC to develop her latest evening-length dance theater work, Make Believe, which explores magic, celebrity worship, and romantic love through the lens of ritual and religious spectacle. Looking at how the influence of religion during childhood impacts notions of romantic love later in life, Herrera will draw on her aesthetic influence growing up in the pageantry-filled Catholic church to create Make Believe, in collaboration with a diverse group of performers and designers.

Herrera finds inspiration in a wide-range of personal engagements with religion. Educated in Catholic school and raised by Cuban-American parents, Herrera grew up equally familiar with the tenets of Christianity as with the Afro-Cuban “voodoo” practice of Santeria. Not only are her parents devoutly Catholic, they were also briefly connected to The Way Ministry, a religious cult. She was also tightly bonded to her Tio Juanito, a mystic whose unexpected trance-like premonitions were revered by her family. This, combined with her family’s obsession with celebrity astrologer Walter Mercado, culminated in a unique spiritual identity rooted in a dramatic, however intimate relationship with the divine. At a time when fear of otherness is at a fever pitch, and our most intimate selves are shielded behind online profiles, Herrera finds her family’s rapturous search for deliverance in God and love to be in sharp contrast, even threatening, to a regressive and judgmental piety that looms over the American cultural landscape.

While at MANCC, Herrera will convene her entire cast, as well as dramaturg David Brick, Co-Director of Headlong Dance Institute, costume designer Maiko Matsushima, and music director, Oscar Diaz. Where in her previous projects Herrera has incorporated design collaborators at the end of the process, this project will represent a shift in her way of working toward a longer term collaboration, where set, costume, and music designers shape the work in the studio from the very outset.

A classically trained singer, Herrera has developed with her company a pre-show warm-up ritual of singing in canon, which has become yet another method of transcendance shared by the company. For Make Believe, Herrera and Diaz will further develop this practice at MANCC by designing an original score of popular love songs and sacred music that will be sung in canon by the performers themselves.

  • Photos Coming Soon
Collaborators in Residence: Maiko Matsushima [Costume], Oscar Diaz [Music Director], Juraj Koos [Composer], David Brick [Mentor]

Choreographic Fellow | September 6-27, 2010

Dining Alone and Pity Party

Throughout her upbringing as a Cuban-American daughter of a cook and restaurant-owner in Miami, Herrera had a particularly empathetic and undeniable visceral feeling toward watching others dine alone. These feelings triggered a larger search related to attitudes about dining situations, loneliness, isolation and aging. In preparation for Dining Alone, she sought to deconstruct her personal attitude/perspective and gather a broader cultural and generational views on these subject matters. At MANCC, Herrera held dialogue with a culturally diverse group of performers (drag queens, actors, dancers, break dancers and burlesque performers), who were all first or second generation immigrants and with Tallahassee community members and interlaced the conversations and findings into movement improvisations to begin shaping Dining Alone. She also continued exploring the development of Pity Party.

Dining Alone
 premiered at American Dance Festival July 27-29, 2011.

  • Rosie Herrera at work-in-progress of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Octavio Campos in work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Octavio Campos in work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Octavio Campos in work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Octavio Campos in work-in-progress showing of <i>Dining Alone</i>.
  • Rehearsal
  • Rehearsal
  • Rehearsal
  • Rehearsal
  • Rehearsal
  • Rehearsal
  • Rosie Herrera speaks with FSU students during post viewing luncheon.
  • Rosie Herrera speaks with FSU student during post viewing luncheon.
  • Students talk with Herrera and collaborators during post viewing luncheon.

Collaborators in Residence: Lydia Bittner-Baird, Octavio Campos, Rachel Caroll, Liony Garcia, Rudi Goblen, Ana Mendez. Slideshow photos by Kathryn Noletto Felis and Al Hall.

World Premiere

Cynthia Oliver

Virago-Man Dem
October 25 - 28
BAM Fisher (NYC)

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