Nikiya’s epic “death” solo at the end of La Bayadère’s second act is more than a test of stamina: It’s integral to the ballet’s plot. In it, Nikiya laments her doomed relationship with Prince Solor, rejoices upon receiving a basket of flowers she believes to be from him and collapses after being bitten by a … More »
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 Kylee … More »
What is it that makes certain performers magnetic?
This past weekend I saw Pacific Northwest Ballet perform at the Joyce here in New York City. I was taken aback by the bevy of beautiful bodies onstage. Almost every female dancer had exquisitely long limbs, ideal ballet proportions, feet to die for and even model-worthy facial features. They were Ballerina Barbie come to life—if Ballerina Barbie had been designed by George Balanchine.
Why is it that one ballerina moves you to tears while another leaves you cold? The answer, in a word, is artistry. Not all dancers are artists, no matter how accomplished or experienced. Some dancers create roles and some perform them. Those wielding the most brilliant technique are not necessarily the most expressive. Occasionally a … More »
Of all the full-length classical ballets, Coppélia charms audiences with humor above everything else. The ballet tells the tale of Swanilda and Franz, who are engaged to be married. When Franz falls for a doll, Swanilda impersonates it, and mayhem ensues. Here, Texas Ballet Theater’s Jayme Autrey Griffith offers her thoughts on the lead role, … More »
Ask Keenan McLaren how she felt at the start of her first season with Dayton Ballet in 2005, and she’ll have one word for you: terrified. “I was youngest person in the company, and I didn’t know anyone,” she says. “But I reminded myself that I have a certain level of training, and I wouldn’t … More »
When Sarah Van Patten first danced the lead in a Royal Danish Ballet production of Romeo and Juliet, it felt like a cinch. Just 16 years old, she was an apprentice in the company and it seemed very real. “I didn’t even think about acting,” she says. Now 24 and a principal with San … More »
In the ballet world, great partnerships are rare. The unique chemistry of a splendid ballerina and her attentive partner can hold audiences spellbound. Witnessing a pas de deux by extraordinarily simpatico dancers can fundamentally change the way one perceives ballet. At American Ballet Theatre, Paloma Herrera and Marcelo Gomes deliver that special combination of ballet … More »
For our Whole Dancer Issue, Pointe looked at how dancers nurture who they are both inside and outside the studio. We found that dancers in companies all over the country spend much of their time off supporting worthy causes in their communities. In addition to giving themselves to audiences night after night, giving their time … More »
Swans, pluck those feathers! Wilis, stow those veils! Dancers everywhere, update those personal websites! Embrace every challenge the dance world throws your way and look for a few more—your future may depend on it. Such is the consensus of the distinguished array of dancers, company directors and teachers Pointe asked about the prospects for the … More »