Last week I was given the opportunity to attend to probably one of the most beautiful show that I ever saw. The current discourse that states that there is no culture in Monterrey makes me feel so surprised to have lived this amazing moment. And I suddenly realized that, yes, there is a cultural life in Monterrey, which is growing. There are museums in the center, of art and history. There are universities. There are art galleries. There’s a theater. There’s Conarte, a center dedicated to the promotion of the art. And there’s even a Ballet School: the Ballet de Monterrey.
The International Ballet is however a different institution and each year, in September, they organize an important gala where they invite famous ballerinas from all around the world. This year the artists invited to do the show were:
Friedmann Vogel and Rocío Alemán from the Stuttgart Ballet
Yuan Yuan Tan and Davit Karapetyan from the San Fransisco Ballet
Greta Hodgkinson and Evan McKie from the National Ballet of Canada
Ashley Mayeux and Andrew Brader from Complexions Contemporary Ballet
Katia Carranza and Serafín Castro from the Ballet of Monterrey
And…it was simply wonderful. Such a high level of technique that I would have never expected, so much magic, so much lightness…It was literally as if the dancers were flying. Until now my best ballet experience was Swan Lake interpreted by the Ballet of Saint Petersburg. But I have to admit that what I saw the last Sunday was as good as Swan Lake or maybe even higher.
I think that the specificity of this representation was the alliance between classical dance (ballet) and contemporary dance. From a subjective point of view I am not a fan of contemporary style, however some choreographies were a mix between ballet and contemporary and it was amazing. The grace of the ballet associated to the liberty of the contemporary dance…I like the idea to get off the beaten track.
And what about going to the ballet itself? Here, in Monterrey, this is something elitist. Culture is less accessible. Tickets are expensive and only affordable by people who have a pretty high level of life: understand here people who live in San Pedro (I already talked a bit about San Pedro but I will dedicate it an article in the future). Going to the ballet is a sign of a wealth and people dress up elegantly to go there. It was also the case before in France. Before that the casual trend pushed some people to go to the ballet with a pair of jeans. In my case I’ve never been to the ballet wearing jeans but at the same time I was not going highly dressed up neither: urbanite clothes were enough for me.
However I anticipated the situation the last week. I guessed that people will be going in a really elegant way. After one year of going out in San Pedro I simply realized that people were giving a lot of attention on their presentation when they were going out. And I think that this is mainly the case in Latin America. In France but also in Great Britain and in Germany (Italy escapes to the rule) we lost the habit to dress really well, even for weddings. In Mexico women wear long dress for weddings. In France the “rule” states that it’s supposed to be “cocktail” but actually, in many cases it’s casual. Ultimately, in Mexico we take care of us and our appearance in general.
So these are some facts about a nice evening in Monterrey:
Don’t only think about bars and clubs: think culture, think spectacle, think theater, think ballet!
Get dressed and think about what to wear: forget your favorite pair of jeans and your old sneakers!
Be opened to new expediencies where you didn’t expect them: Monterrey can surprise you!
And end your night at PALAX, a unique place between an American diner and a Cantina Mexicana opened 24 hours/7 days: article dedicated to PALAX soon!
Here a video about Sarah Mearns, Star of the New York City Ballet who astonished me: