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mendibex.jpg (4450 bytes)
As painted by Mendive

Recently formed a group: New Moon

Contacting Danilito Perez

Danilito Photo Gallery

Danilo Gregorio Perez Herera

Danilito is well known throughout the province of Matanzas for his serious interest in AfroCuban culture. A strong artist - choreographer and dancer - he is also keenly interested in the preservation and strengthening of the traditional African cultures of Matanzas.  He knows every santero family in the province, even out in the remote villages, where folks remain very close to Africa.

Danilito is a veteran of Afrocuba de Matanzas, where he was well known as a solo dancer,

Most recently, he has been asked to choreograph a new group in Matanzas, Obabi Laye, composed of such legendary figures as Virulina, one of the founding members of the Muñequitos de Matanzas, which was started over 40 years ago. Danilito and the other members will be headed for Spain, where they will help re-inforce a cabildo (a religious self help organization) in Valencia.

Here is Danilito's biography:


Dancer, Choreographer, and Professor

Popular dance
Strong folkloric dance
Son, Danzon, Cha-cha

"I was born to a family completely full of folkloric traditions and AfroCuban customs, the Villamil family, from which come the greater part of the rumbero singers, percussionists, and dancers in the province of Matanzas within this new generation -- Muñequitos, Afrocuba, Afrocaribeño and other groups.

Aside from being dancer, I am religious:

  • Palero
  • father in ocha and esperitista
  • omo elegua: my name en el santo is echu - ala - ibo

I have participated in important events, at both the national and international level. In my 15 year career, my first experience as a professional was with Afrocuba de Matanzas, where I was solo dancer for 7 years. I worked with master painter Manuel Mendive as a model for African figure painting and thereby made my first international tours [see photo above, taken in Italy].

Then I went into the fields of choreography and acting. My first work was Olla y Obitico, where I held one of the principal roles and danced solo. A year later I started to set up the choreography for a group called Afro Caribeño, which was no less than the alliance of popular dance and music raised up the level of a sophisticated Afro spectacle.

After 3 years as choreographer of Afro Caribeño, I began to dance in cabaret shows with a group called Panorama Antillano. Still later, I continued with my studies of our Yoruba religion.

I would like to have an interechange with people who are interested in helping to preserve our traditional AfroCuban culture, as in the languages of

  • Bantu
  • Carabali
  • Congo
  • Arara/Daome
  • Iyesa lands
  • Ganga
  • Haiti

We need this now that these traditions are being lost here in the Province of Matanzas, which is where there was the most settling of Afro culture. And for lack of communications we will lose more. This depends on you, my friends."

-- Danilo Perez Herera, Matanzas, August 1997

New Moon

Luna Nueva - New Moon
Ire Oba

A new group, formed by Danilito, shows much promise given the line up:

Danilito Perez director, choreographer
Danilito Perez Sr    percussion, formerly of Los Muñequitos
Lilian Oviedo Aldama dance, formerly of Afrocuba
Yurien Garcia Perez dance, sister of Sandy Perez
Clarita Noriega
voice, mother of Teresa Pollero of the Conjunto Folklorico
Odalis Fuente
Daniel Alfonso Herrera percussion, Los Tambores de Chacha
Omar Alfonso percussion, son of Jesus Alfonso, of Los Muñequitos



Contacting Danilito Perez

Through this web site for now, phone numbers to be provided soon.

Contacting AfroCubaWeb

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