The year 2002 marked a turning point for the Alliance as its unique repertoire gained international recognition
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Utah Hispanic Dance Alliance (UHDA) was formed in 2000 and is made up of folk dancers from throughout Utah who want to both preserve the ethnic dance traditions of Latin America and promote community inclusion as they showcase the excellence of Hispanic Culture through dance. The UHDA’s dance performances are unique in that they showcase the folkdances and culture of all of Latin America. Not only does the audience experience the sounds and flavors of Mexico in the performances, but they may also witness the traditions of Bolivia, Chile, Puerto Rico, Colombia, and many other Latin American Countries. Colorful costumes, vibrant music, and especially, our native performers, all serve to produce a truly authentic cultural experience.
The highlight of the UHDA’s performing season is our annual, “Latin American Dance Spectacular”, 2014 held each year since 2000 in downtown Salt Lake City, an event which has been recognized by respected dance critics as, “ A Gem” and “wonderful addition to Utah’s diverse arts scene” and “one of the most acclaimed cultural endeavors that Utah has to offer”.
Besides our large theater performances, The UHDA also participate it at various smaller presentations throughout the year including school events and assemblies, community cultural celebrations, as well as private events. We have performed for an audience in excess of 15,000 at the LDS conference center as well as for inmates at the Central Utah Correctional facility.
In January of 2013, the UHDA participated in our highest profile accomplishment to date. We were invited to represent the State of Utah at President Obama’s 2nd Inaugural Parade in Washington, D.C. The UHDA was selected from among thousands of organizations who competed for this great honor, in large part due to our ability to represent the highest caliber of traditional Hispanic Art & Culture . The UHDA has presented dance shows throughout the State of Utah, the western US, Europe, and even in South America – It speaks highly of the UHDA, that its members are exporting Hispanic folk dance to – of all places – South America
Jessica Salazar is the Artistic Director and founder of the Utah Hispanic Dance Alliance. A native of Sonora, Mexico, Jessica received her Masters Degree in Dance from Brigham Young University where she also choreographed and performed with the acclaimed Lamanite Generation dance ensemble. While living in the Midwest, Jessica served as a board member with the Ethnic Dance Theater of Minneapolis, taught as a guest choreographer at St. Olaf College, and served as an artist in residence for the Minneapolis Public School District. Currently, Jessica resides in Salt Lake City where she also serves as a panelist on the Utah Arts Council Dance Board and is a certified Arts Administrator through the Utah Arts Council’s Front Porch Institute Program. In Jessica, was recognized for her unique contribution to Art in Utah and profiled by Artes de Mexico en Utah in their New Chapters oral history project. This exhibit, funded by the Utah Humanities Council and the Utah State Office of History, “recognized the unique histories of Utah artists who have added new chapters to Utah’s history—Chapters necessary to fully understand our State’s past & the richness its diversity brings.” – Artes de Mexico
Jessica Salazar es la Directora Artística y fundadora del Utah Hispanic Dance Alliance. Nativa de Sonora, México, Jessica recibió su Maestría en Danza de la Universidad de Brigham Young donde también enseñó y participo con el reconocido grupo “La Generación Lamanita” de dicha universidad. Mientras que vivía en
Minneapolis, Jessica trabajo como miembro de la directiva del “Teatro de Danza Étnica de Minneapolis”, enseño como coreógrafa invitada en el “Colegio de San Olaf”, y trabajo como artista residente en el Distrito Escolar de Minneapolis. Actualmente, Jessica reside en Salt Lake City, donde también sirve como panelista en la directiva del area de la danza del Consejo de las Artes de Utah.
|Full Group Performance Programs
From 18 to 20 performers will delight you as they showcase the living traditions of Latin America. Vibrant colorful costumes combine with authentic traditional music to transport the audience from the pueblos of Mexico to the mountains of Bolivia and beyond. Our repertoire includes the regional and national dances of most Latin American countries and many of our dancers are natives of the countries they represent, which serves to further add to the authenticity of the experience. As participants in the Utah Arts Council’s Performing Arts Tour, the cost of a full group performance may be subsidized, Call The State’s community partnership office at 801- 236-7555 or visit their website at www.arts.utah.gov/csp. Recorded Music is used in our typical performance, however, a live mariachi ensemble, classical harpist, or Andean musicians may be available for an additional fee. Call for details.
The UHDA can custom design a performance to meet any occasion. Our smaller ensemble performances can include from 6 to 12 beautifully costumed performers who will delight your audience. These smaller groups are particularly well suited for festivals, special events, corporate functions, and other smaller venue events. This performance can run from 20 minutes to 1 hour. The cost is dependent on the number of dancers needed.
“UHDA instructors instilled a sense of confidence and pride in our at-risk youth, by celebrating the customs, history, and traditions of the diverse cultures of Latin America”
–Magdalena Lowe, Centro de la Familia
The UHDA is an invaluable educational resource, our K-12 age- appropriate programs balance performance, education and instruction.
Hispanic Dance &Students develop skills, interest, and appreciation for Hispanic culture by Culture Residency learning folk dances and customs from a combination of Latin American countries. Our Artistic Director, Jessica Salazar, was a Former Artist In Residence for the Minneapolis Public School District and can incorporate content with graduation standards.
An entertaining demonstration by 6-8 beautifully costumed dancers designed to foster an understanding and appreciation for Hispanic culture. Appropriate for senior centers, hospitals, schools, and other non-theatrical community venues.
Master classes and Workshops
Since the UHDA is made up of dancers and master teachers from throughout all of Latin America, A workshop curriculum designedAuthentic Instruction for beginning through intermediate dancers interested in the Regional or & Workshops National dances of Latin America, like the Cueca from Chile, or the Jarabe from Mexico, is available for your group. The workshop includes informative handouts for the students to keep as well as certificates of completion for each participant. Experienced instructors are also available for master classes.