top of page
© Copyright CubaCaribe
17th Annual Festival of Dance & Music
March 31 - April 9, 2023
Mouth of a Shark
Weekend 1

March 31-April 2, 2023
World premiere by choreographer Ramón Ramos Alayo
ODC Theater,
3153 17th StreetSan Francisco, CA  94110

Performances are Friday, March 31 and Saturday, April 1 at 7:30pm, and Sunday, April 2 at 4:30pm, at ODC Theater in San Francisco.  Tickets, adult $35, youth 12 and under $25 are available at

A reflection on the lives of immigrants, Mouth of A Shark is inspired in part by Somali poet Warsan Shire’s poem Home. It will incorporate the choreographer’s extensive knowledge of Afro-Cuban dance forms into a conceptual framework of the dual identities of immigrants. It is also informed by the time Alayo spent in his birthplace of Santiago, Cuba in 2020 and 2021, working with young professional dancers from Danza del Caribe—the company he danced with before immigrating to the US—on movement created and filmed in response to Shire’s poem, “No One Leaves Home; Unless Home is …” The program will open with the screening of a film followed by the world premiere performances of the piece, with additional film footage serving as a visual backdrop for the dancers. Please note show begins outside standing at 7:30 so dress with layers and let us know if you need mobility accommodations contact us at

Weekend 2

April 7-9, 2023

Mixed Programming 

Dance Mission Theater, 3316 24th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

Performances are Friday, April 7 and Saturday, April 8 at 8pm, and Sunday, April 9 at 5pm, at Dance Mission Theater in San Francisco.  Tickets, $28, are available starting Jan.1 2023 at


Six local and visiting dance companies will create original choreography rooted in the Caribbean and it’s Diaspora based on the curatorial vision. Gathering is either a noun or a verb, something we do or is done. After the last few years in a global pandemic, we recognize the importance of physically coming together. The isolation and reuniting after has taken many forms. We will reflect on our individual and shared experiences and resilience. Dance, music and art proved more important than ever; they enabled a way to communally gather, to be a part of something larger than ourselves and to share, a way to express emotional struggles and joys and serves as freedom for individuals, cultures and communities. This is true now and has been true throughout history. “Dance was the organic link with Africa helping to alleviate the isolation that threatened the cultural heritage of the individuals who ended up in the Caribbean.”



Special Events:


Afro-Cuban master dance classes with Emilio Hernandez González – Dancer, choreographer and teacher with Raíces Profundas from Havana Cuba via Miami

Locations and times TBA


Celebration, & Lecture TBA


press to zoom

press to zoom

press to zoom


Ramón Ramos Alayo was a principal dancer with several prominent Cuban dance companies, including Danza del Caribe and Narcisco Medina Contemporary Dance Company, touring throughout Europe, Belize, and Canada. Since relocating to the U.S. in 1997 he has performed with Robert Henry Johnson, Kim Epifano, Sara Shelton Mann, Zaccho Dance Theatre and Robert Moses’ Kin. He founded Alayo Dance Company in 2002 and CubaCaribe in 2003. His work is an innovative fusion of Afro-Cuban modern, folkloric and popular Cuban Dance, having choreographed and produced twelve full length dance performances. He has been featured in National Geographic Magazine, received the prestigious Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation Emerging Choreographer’s Award, was recognized as “Best Dance Dynamo” by the SF Bay Guardian, was the recipient of a SF Bay Guardian Goldie Award, and has been hailed by dance critic Rita Felciano as “the best Afro-Cuban dancer whose choreography stands well beyond traditional modes.” His piece Goodbye was named one of the best premier’s in 2016 in Dance Europe Magazine.

More bios coming soon...

Mouth of A Shark is funded by The Rainin Foundation and Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation.

bottom of page