"I don't do well with free time," admits Eric Trope.
So when Miami City Ballet pulled the plug on its season this spring, the corps member immediately started looking for something else to get involved in. Two friends, Kristin Guerin and Jessica Gutierrez, had just started a program they'd seen in other cities where those who were elderly, immunocompromised or without access to a car could be paired with neighbors who volunteered to pick up groceries and prescriptions for them. They called it Buddy System.
For the past three years, New York City Ballet dancers Emily Kikta and Peter Walker have created a series of site-specific dance films promoting the company's annual summer residency at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Although this summer's installment looks different due to the coronavirus pandemic, Kikta and Walker continue the tradition into its fourth year with SPAC Reimagined.
With quarantine restrictions in place and the company's SPAC residency cancelled due to the onset of COVID-19, Kikta and Walker decided to expand the series and shift its focus to the effects of the pandemic on the arts industry. As Walker describes, they hope to use the series to provide "a small offering of what could have been" for audiences who had been looking forward to seeing this summer's performances. The first of the five videos was released today, July 14, in recognition of what would have been NYCB's opening night at SPAC.
From the flamenco of Carmen to the sprites of Rusalka, dance plays a supporting role in countless operas—and opera can play a significant part in a ballet dancer's career. Pointe went behind the curtain with three dancers whose artistic paths have led them to the opera world.
Rachel Speidel Little<p><strong>Performing with the San Francisco Opera since 2012</strong></p>
Cory Weaver, Courtesy San Francisco Opera
Jesse Campbell<p><strong>Performing with the Metropolitan Opera since 2018</strong></p>
Courtesy Metropolitan Opera
Eve Jacobs<p><strong></strong><strong>Performing with the Washington National Opera, 2017 and 2020</strong></p>
Scott Suchman, Courtesy Washington National Opera