A Ballet to Honor a Fallen Hero

Joshua Burnham in Colin: Son, Marine, Hero. Photo Courtesy Manassas Ballet Theatre.


Veterans Day is next Tuesday, but a small ballet company in Northern Virginia is getting an early start this weekend with a very special tribute. Tonight, Manassas Ballet Theatre premieres Colin: Son, Marine, Hero, a full-length ballet that memorializes the life of artistic director Amy Grant Wolfe’s son Colin, who was killed serving in Iraq in 2006.


Colin was a dancer himself, trained by his mother at MBT’s academy. While a ballet dancer may seem an unlikely candidate for the Marine Corps, the events of September 11, 2001, inspired Colin to join the military after high school. But as CBS Sunday Morning reported last weekend, his dance training gave him the discipline, agility and coordination necessary for life as a U.S. Marine. Not long after enlisting he was sent to Iraq, where he was killed—at age 19—by a roadside bomb.

Colin Wolfe. Photo Courtesy Manassas Ballet Theatre.

To prepare for the ballet’s creation, Wolfe interviewed Colin’s commander and fellow Marines. “Colin became alive again,” Wolfe told CBS Sunday Morning’s David Martin, “and therefore, for me, Colin died again. This full-length ballet has been torture.” Joshua Burnham, formerly of San Francisco Ballet and Cincinnati Ballet, plays the role of Colin alongside a cast of 25 other dancers. The ballet, which includes original music by Mark Menza played by a live orchestra, runs through November 9. For ticket information, click here or call (888) 945-2468.

Latest Posts

Left to right: Dance Theatre of Harlem's Daphne Lee, Amanda Smith, Lindsey Donnell and Alexandra Hutchinson in a scene from Dancing Through Harlem. Derek Brockington, Courtesy Dance Theatre of Harlem

Dancers Share Their Key Takeaways After a Year of Dancing on Film

Creating dances specifically for film has become one of the most effective ways that ballet companies have connected with audiences and kept dancers employed during the pandemic. Around the world, dance organizations are finding opportunities through digital seasons, whether conceiving cinematic, site-specific pieces or filming works within a traditional theater. And while there is a consistent sentiment that nothing will ever substitute the thrill of a live show, dancers are embracing this new way of performing.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Alexandra McMaster

Start Your Dance Day With This Delicious Berry Breakfast Crisp Recipe

When it comes to breakfast, I want it to be easy and convenient but still taste delicious. My Berry Breakfast Crisp is just that. You can bake the crisp on the weekend as meal prep, then enjoy it throughout the week cold or warmed in the microwave. It freezes well, too!

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Liam Scarlett with Marianela Nuñez and Ryoichi Hirano during a rehearsal of his Swan Lake at The Royal Ballet. Andrej Uspenski, Courtesy ROH

Choreographer Liam Scarlett Has Died

Over the weekend, news broke that 35-year-old choreographer Liam Scarlett, a former artist in residence at The Royal Ballet, died suddenly at his home in England. "It is with great sadness that we announce the tragic, untimely death of our beloved Liam," Scarlett's family said in a brief statement. "At this difficult time for all of our family, we would ask that you respect our privacy to enable us to grieve our loss."

The cause of death was not disclosed.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks