Three years have elapsed since Ballet Hispanico founder Tina Ramirez retired and handed the director's mantle to Eduardo Vilaro. During this spring's New York season at the Joyce, evidence of his personal stamp on the company's repertoire and overall mission was evident. A product of Alvin Ailey training, the former director of Chicago's Luna Negra Dance Theater has a decidedly contemporary bent to his artistic choices. The Hispanic music and ethos are still evident, but the works – at least the ones I saw – are far more modern than Latin. That change apparently extends to all of the company's endeavors. For example, the arts-in-education program that was felicitously called "Primeros Pasos" is now simply "Education and Outreach." Meh.
That said, however, the company is in very good shape and the evening was thoroughly enjoyable. The audience applauded wildly. If you happen to be in NYC before the current run ends on Aprils 29th, I strongly recommend that you catch a show. There are family matinees as well as evening performances. Olé!