The following is guest blog by New York City Ballet soloist (and February/March 2010 cover girl) Kathryn Morgan. Stay tuned for more posts from Kathryn!
What a whirlwind week I’ve had! For the past month and a half, I’ve been busy rehearsing Peter Martins’ new ballet for the New York City Ballet’s Architecture of Dance Season, as well as our regular Balanchine/Robbins repertoire. I thought I wasn’t going to be performing until May 7–but little did I know that a week before our spring gala, I’d end up replacing an injured Janie Taylor in Benjamin Millepied’s new ballet. By the way, I hadn’t ever seen a step of the piece! I’m not going to lie–I was slightly panicked! They had been working on this piece for weeks and were just starting to really fine-tune details.
So, a rehearsal was scheduled right away for me, and somehow I managed to learn the entire ballet in two hours. I definitely got a great brain workout that day! Thankfully I still had six days (which is actually an eternity at New York City Ballet) to feel comfortable with the ballet and get it in my body. For the next few days I had private rehearsals with Sean Suozzi, my partner for the piece, followed by complete rehearsals with everyone.
Finally, after many impromptu costume fittings, separate orchestra rehearsals, and lots of notes, the performance went exceedingly well. I am so happy that Benjamin was pleased, and even though I wasn’t his original vision, I hope I did the ballet justice.
However, the greatest thing for me was how supportive everyone was through this crazy week. The entire cast was so wonderful helping me remember where to go and what came next. At City Ballet, injuries happen all the time, and there are people constantly getting thrown into ballets at the last minute. One of the great treasures of our company is that we are a little family. The encouragement, support, and respect we all have for each other are what make times like this manageable. I don’t know how I would have done this without all of my fellow dancers’ help. I received many compliments about how quickly I learned the ballet and how incredible it was that I could perform it so well under the pressure of the time crunch, but honestly, without every single person in that ballet, it never would have happened. So I thank each and every one of them from the bottom of my heart! It’s times like this that make me realize how special the New York City Ballet truly is.