» Director-General pays tribute to the memory of Alicia Alonso, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador
17.10.2019 - Goodwill Ambassadors

Director-General pays tribute to the memory of Alicia Alonso, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador

Alicia Alonso

UNESCO Director-General, Audrey Azoulay, paid tribute to Alicia Alonso, UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador and outstanding Cuban dancer, who passed away at the age of 98 in Havana, Cuba, on 17 October 2019.

"With the death of Cuban ballerina and choreographer Alicia Alonso, we lose a unique and generous artist. Designated UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in 2002, she embodied classical ballet with great talent, which she helped to promote and preserve. » emphasized the Director-General. 

Alicia Alonso was designated UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador in June 2002, in light of her outstanding contribution to the development, preservation and popularization of classical dance, through which she promoted the UNESCO’s ideals and the fellowship of the world’s peoples and cultures . She had already been awarded the UNESCO Pablo Picasso Medal in 1999 for her extraordinary contribution to dance. 

Alongside her work with UNESCO, she was the patron of UNESCO's "Dance for Life" programme, which aimed to combat elitism and exclusion in the field of dance. 

The international world of dance has lost an eminent choreographer who inspired and guided new generations of dancers. The "prima ballerina assoluta" has left the stage, but her legacy is immense, as the founder of the Cuban National Ballet, for the rise that she gave to arts education as an essential instrument for shaping creativity, for her dissemination of knowledge of different cultures and her respect for others.



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