2018 Stars of the Corps: Cincinnati Ballet's Samantha Griffin
Intensity is Samantha Griffin’s modus operandi, whether she’s self-reflecting on an unhappy, gilded existence in Garrett Smith’s Facades or violently whipping a metal chair into the wings in artistic director Victoria Morgan’s Black Coffee. The 23-year-old Griffin puts all of her flexible 5′ 8″ frame to use in contemporary movement, which she prefers. “It fits my body well,” she says. Yet she’s also given dazzling performances in more neoclassical roles, including the Tall Girl soloist in Balanchine’s “Rubies” and the Dark Angel in his Serenade.
Griffin with Michael Mengden in Jennifer Archibald’s “MYOHO.” Photo by Peter Mueller, Courtesy Cincinnati Ballet.
A native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Griffin graduated from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts’ high school program. She was a member of Charlotte Ballet II before joining Cincinnati Ballet as a trainee in 2015.
Undoubtedly on the fast track, Griffin says she is grateful for every opportunity she has been given with the company. “I want to fully invest myself onstage and try to understand what I am supposed to be doing in every given moment.”