Many ballet folklorico groups pass through the area. Few have the pedigree of the world-renowned Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez, which performs Wednesday at the Gallo Center for the Arts in Modesto.
The group, which is celebrating its 60th anniversary, performs every week at Mexico City's Palacio de Bellas Artes, the most important cultural center in Mexico. The company has performed around the globe as an official representative of Mexican culture.
"This is a very strong company and a strong program," Artistic Director Salvador Lopez said in a phone interview. "This is one of the best companies (the group) has ever had."
The company is bringing 40 dancersand 20 musicians to the Gallo Center. Some of the dancers perform as many as 18 colorful costume changes.
The program will feature mariachis and dances representing Mexico's pre-Hispanic culture, the Carnival of Veracruz and various regions around Mexico. The goal is to reflect the spirit of Mexico. In a poem on the company's Web site, Hernandez listed some of the images that represented Mexico to her: brown-skinned people, black braids, tropical flowers, candy skulls, churches, ears of corn and engraved silver. Hernandez died in 2000 at age 83.
The Modesto performance will be one of the last concerts in the group's two-month tour, which included stops in Colombia, Venezuela and other parts of the United States.
Audiences who come to the show won't be disappointed, Lopez said. "Mexican culture is exciting," he said. "It's magical. This company represents what Mexico means because this is one of the best companies in the world. It's part of the Mexican soul. It's important that people bring the family to see this company and experience Mexican culture."WHAT: Ballet Folklorico de Mexico de Amalia Hernandez
WHERE: 7 p.m. Wednesday
WHEN: Rogers Theater, Gallo Center for the Arts, 1000 I St., Modesto
CALL: (209) 338-2100