Dream Role: Swanilda

In Balanchine’s comedic Coppélia, San Francisco Ballet’s Frances Chung brings out Swanilda’s playful side. All of Swanilda’s actions come from a place of pure fun. She’s kind of sassy, but I like bringing out her playfulness instead of taking a more bratty approach. The role comes quite naturally to my personality. When my partner and IMore »

The Jazzy Virtuoso

Carefree and confident, New York City Ballet’s Tiler Peck lights up the stage in “Fascinatin’ Rhythm,” one of the principal solos in Balanchine’s Who Cares? “It’s one of my favorites,” she says. “Every time I perform it, I feel like I’m doing it for the first time.” Choreographed for Patricia McBride in 1970, “Fascinatin’ Rhythm”More »

Reverence: Final Bow

Julie Kent looks back on her nearly 30-year career at American Ballet Theatre Who was your biggest inspiration while growing up as a dancer? My first experience in a professional environment was when I was a supernumerary in New York City Ballet’s Coppélia. Patricia McBride was so kind and gentle with all the children. ThatMore »

How It’s Done: Lessons in Subtlety

Kitchens with Jerome Tisserand in "Afternoon of a Faun" (photo by Angela Sterling, courtesy PNB)

The woman’s role in Jerome Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun is surprisingly hard. The plot seems straightforward enough: two dancers happen upon each other in a studio. But the character, created for Tanaquil Le Clercq in 1953, oozes sensuality, innocence and vanity while responding—through the mirror—to her partner’s gaze. Here, Pacific Northwest Ballet soloist KyleeMore »

Company Life: Auditions on Your Home Turf

Auditions are an unnerving fact of life for dancers—and can be especially unsettling when they’re done in the comfort of your own company. When visiting choreographers and répétiteurs come to town, they prefer to have a day or two to work with the company before making their casting decisions. The good news is that whenMore »

Company Life: First-Year Fumbles

During my years as a principal with San Francisco Ballet and Pennsylvania Ballet, it made me cringe if new corps members pulled out their phones to text or tweet. It felt unprofessional in the middle of class, but it was especially disrespectful during rehearsal, even if they weren’t involved in the scene being danced. SomethingMore »

Your Training: All in the Details

There are several technical hurdles that many dancers struggle to overcome, like raised shoulders and floppy wrists. Though they may seem like small details, they can stand between you and your next level—whether that’s entry to a prestigious summer intensive, a top score at a competition or even an apprentice position at a coveted company.More »