In 1937, he traveled with his brother and wife Alicia to the United States. In 1940, he and Alicia joined the American Ballet Theatre, where they remained until 1948. They returned to Havana and were part of a group called the Ballet Alicia Alonso. It later became the National Ballet. In 1975, after he and Alicia divorced, he took control of the ballet in the city of Camagüey. In 2000, he was awarded Cuba's National Dance Prize for lifetime achievement.
On 27 July 2013, Cuba's state television announced his death at the age of 98. No cause was specified.