Tropicana’s new dancer

Havana Cuba by Keri Pickett

The Tropicana nightclub show is really great. I would have loved to have seen the ballet too. In general, My uncle has taught me, it is important to see as much live-entertainment shows as possible and in Cuba as there is so much talent in the field of dance.

Havana Cuba by Keri Pickett

Tropicana

This is Havana. Imagine back in the mob days when the boats would bring wealthy Cuban’s to Miami for lunch and have them back home on the same day… legend has it that in the 50s people would fly into Havana for dinner and a show at the Tropicana to see the top names in entertainment and then fly back home that night…

Havana Cuba by Keri Pickett

Tropicana

Havana Cuba by Keri Pickett

Flowers

 

There is a reason that certain places are legendary… and that is because they are super cool. The Tropicana is a nightclub in Havana Cuba that has a thrust stage built around beautiful big old trees, very cool. Hundreds of dancers move through countless costume changes to create a show that reveals the origins of all the different musical traditions in Cuba very cool.

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Then on top of all that there is the energy of the show. The dancers have a great time and the audience gets to sit so close to the dancers you can catch the sweat as it swings off the dancers. The seats were either 95, 85 or 75 CUCs. The most expensive seats mean that you don’t have to have waiters and waitresses walking in front of you as you see the show but it is really close and so it could be a neck strain!

The Tropicana show is like Las Vegas with an Afro-Cuban beat!

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A portion of a bottle of rum and some snacks come with your ticket for the show. There is an extra charge for being able to shoot with your camera and a bigger fee to make video. It is rather an honor system as everyone now has a camera in their pocket and the camera does video too. So I paid for the photo. I confess I did film a few of the numbers!

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At the end of the night the dancers came into the audience to collect dancers to join them on stage and a dancer chose me so I got up and danced. A fab new tour group friend grabbed my camera/phone and filmed the short bit of my dancing on the stage of the Tropicana. Makes me appreciate the video aspect of the phone and I am so grateful to have the bit of me on stage just to prove it is true – the Tropicana got a new dancer – and it is me.

Keri Pickett

Keri Pickett is an author, photographer and filmmaker telling the stories of life, family and community with intimacy, honesty and impact. Pickett is Producer, Director and Camera for the award-winning feature documentary film ‘The Fabulous Ice Age’, about the rise and fall of the great American touring ice shows and one man’s quest to save the history, available on Netflix and Amazon. Her short film, 'Steel // Spirit' premiered at MSPIFF and won certificate of excellence in India. Her award-winning books include Love in the 90s; BB and Jo, The Story of a Lifelong Love, A Granddaughter’s Portrait (Warner Books, 1995); Faeries; Visions, Voices & Pretty Dresses (Aperture, 2000); Saving Body & Soul, The Mission of Mary Jo Copeland (WaterBrook, 2004). The recipient of a Jerome and Minnesota State Arts Board grants, three McKnight Foundation Photography fellowships, a National Endowment for the Arts award, and a Bush Foundation Fellow, Pickett’s work is in the permanent collections of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Museum of Fine Arts Houston and the Minneapolis Institute of Art.