Posted: 10/12/22

Ballet Nepantla Returns to TAMIU for ‘Mística’ Performances


Ballet Nepantla Mistica

A celebration and commemoration of ancestral heritage and Día de Muertos by New York City-based Ballet Nepantla will soon take the stage at Texas A&M International University’s (TAMIU) Center for the Fine and Performing Arts Theater.

Scheduled performances are this  Saturday, Oct. 15 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 16 at 3 p.m. The event is hosted through TAMIU’s College of Arts and Science showcasing the talents of Ballet Nepantla, an affiliate of the Edinburg Dance Theatre.

Admission is free and open to the public. Donations in support of the University’s Dance Scholarships are greatly appreciated. Masks are recommended.

The upcoming performance, Mística, pays homage to the Afro and Hispanic roots as it transports audience members into the afterlife through a unique fusion of ballet folkórico and contemporary dance. Performances range from an eclectic mix of topics, such as loss, love, generosity, solemnity, respect, departure, rebellion, and spirituality, among others. 

TAMIU dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Claudia San Miguel, said the College was thrilled to be able to bring Ballet Nepantla back to TAMIU and Laredo audiences.  They previously performed at the University last March.

“Ballet Nepantla has carved out an impressive place in the dance world with a daring fusion of traditional folklórico, contemporary dance, classical ballet, and West African dance.  We are thrilled to host their artistry share it again with our students, campus, and community,” Dr. San Miguel explained, “Ballet Nepantla is a celebration of our border and the things that define and bind us, so I’m especially grateful that our international university presents such opportunities.”

Ballet Nepantla was founded in 2017 by Andrea Guajardo and Martin Rodríguez. Both say Ballet Nepantla tells stories to provoke imagination and help others see the beauty of the Mexican and Mexican American people. 

The ballet company’s name is drawn from the indigenous Nahuatl word for “in-between,” a concept buoyed by the late writer Gloria Anzaldúa’s borderlands theory embracing both sides of the borderland Guajardo and Rodríguez call home. 

Performances have been hailed by Texas Public Radio, noting, “…those who come can expect the unexpected.” 

Likewise, the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce heralded performances by Ballet Nepantla for their innovation, “The performance fuses traditional ballet folklórico with contemporary ballet that hits at the heartstrings of people from all cultures.” 

Last March, Ballet Nepantla presented the enthusiastically received “Valentina,” an innovative ballet performance exploring the strength and resilience of women during the time of revolutionary México.

Currently, TAMIU offers students the option to minor in dance or to take dance courses as general electives. Accomplished faculty members lead dance courses in genres including ballet, ballet folkórico, dance conditioning, flamenco, jazz and modern. 

Additionally, University dance students perform in Fall and Spring concerts and may participate in professional works by faculty members.

For more information, contact the CFPA director of operations, Elizabeth Rubio, at elizabeth.rubio@tamiu.edu or call 956.326.2646. To learn more about Ballet Nepantla, visit balletnepantla.com

University information is also  available at tamiu.edu and on TAMIU’s social channels on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube.