News

At Cincinnati Ballet's Kaplan New Works Series, Dancers Take On the Role of Choreographer

From left: David Morse; Cincinnati Ballet's Michael Mengden and Bella Ureta in rehearsal for Morse's upcoming work. Photos by Jennifer Denham, Courtesy Cincinnati Ballet.

For Cincinnati Ballet artistic director Victoria Morgan, the company's annual Kaplan New Works Series is all about invention. "If you're comfortable, then you're not in the right place," she says. This year's program, held September 13–23 at the Aronoff Center, features a new kind of invention: Two company dancers will step into the role of choreographer for the first time. Soloist David Morse and corps dancer Taylor Carrasco will join contemporary queen Mia Michaels, Cincinnati Ballet resident choreographer Jennifer Archibald and San Francisco Ballet dancer Myles Thatcher in creating new works.



Morse and Carrasco were selected from a choreographic contest held within the company. "We chose them for completely different reasons," says Morgan. Morse's work, Gathering, is set to a minimalist score, and centers on four couples. "It looks at the innate human desire for ritual and its transformative power," he says. Carrasco's work, says Morgan, is "wacky." He took his inspiration from punk marching band Mucca Pazza's album Plays Well Together. "It reminded me of some of the most joyous times in my life, which have been at parties with people I didn't know, but where we were just being humans together," says Carrasco.

Giving dancers the chance to develop as choreographers is a priority for the company, which puts on skill-building workshops each year. "I think it's important to have that experience of standing in front of the room with all those eyes looking at you," says Morgan. "It gives you some empathy for the choreographers you'll be working with in the future."

Instagram

Are you a total bunhead who loves to write? You might be the perfect fit for Pointe. We're seeking an editorial intern who's equally passionate about ballet and journalism.

Keep reading...
Sponsored by Ellison Ballet
Rachel Neville, Courtesy Ellison Ballet

If you've got your heart set on dancing for, say, San Francisco Ballet, you should attend a school that specializes in Balanchine, right? Not necessarily: It's actually a misconception that you have to train in a particular style or technique in order to pursue a career in that style. Ellison Ballet in New York City—which specializes in Vaganova technique—is living proof: Graduates of Ellison's year-round program and summer intensives go on to ballet companies that perform in a wide range of styles, and use what they've learned from Vaganova to land jobs.

Here are five reasons why studying Vaganova technique can actually make you a sought-after dancer for any number of ballet companies:

Keep reading...
News
Getty Images

When French President Emmanuel Macron proposed widespread pension reforms in December, the repercussions were felt almost immediately throughout France. In Paris, protests reverberated through the city. Metro trains halted, the Eiffel Tower was shut down, schools closed, and, at the Paris Opéra Ballet, dancers, singers, artisans and technicians went on strike.

Keep reading...
News
Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake. Johan Persson, Courtesy The Kennedy Center.

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights.

Keep reading...