Ms Ortega began her ballet training at the age of 8 in Holguin, Cuba. In 1980, upon graduating from the Escuela Nacional de Artes, she joined the Ballet de Camaguey of Cuba, dancing throughout Europe and the Americas as the featured soloist of the company. In 1988, she joined Ballet Nacional de Cuba, and in 1989, Ms Ortega won the gold medal from the International Ballet Competition in Peru. In the U.S., she danced with Cleveland Ballet and later San Jose Ballet. Today, she is a freelance ballet teacher.