The legendary Cuban ballet dancer and choreographer Alicia Alonso has died aged 98. Best known for her portrayals of Giselle and the ballet version of Carmen, she had been partially blind from the age of nineteen. Born in Havana in 1920, she was dancing seriously by 1932. In 1941 she was diagnosed with a detached retina and she had surgery to correct the problem. Ordered to lie motionless for three months, she practiced with her feet alone; another operation did not help. She founded her company Cuban National Ballet in 1948, as was instrumental in propelling her countrymen to the very top of the ballet world.

21 December 1920 – 17 October 2019


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