Life After Cedar Lake


Doutel Vaz in Kylián's Indigo Rose. Photo by Sharen Bradford, Courtesy Cedar Lake.

Although Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet's final performances are this week at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, that doesn't mean it's the end of dancing for company member Vânia Doutel Vaz. Pointe spoke with her about closing this chapter and her exciting next step.

What has it been like since the announcement that Cedar Lake would fold?
This whole situation with the company closing makes every dancer feel very, very cherished by the audience. It was beautiful to feel that everybody felt the same way we did, so we weren't alone in that sadness. Support came from all over the world. This was a beautiful journey, and maybe it ended a bit sooner than we wanted, but we did enough to make it worth it.

How have you grown as a dancer since joining in 2010?
When I joined Cedar Lake, I was really obsessed with technique. But I noticed that everybody here had technique; they just weren't focusing on it. They were working on who they are as artists and how they could interpret the work. It took me a while to realize that wasn't against my approach, but it was something that could enhance my dancing. I think I've become a more complete artist.

After Cedar Lake, what's next?
I was offered the lead female role, Lady Macbeth, in Punchdrunk's production of Sleep No More in NYC. I was always drawn to acting and having that intertwined with heavy, intense movement makes me feel like I am about to enter a new path for growth in my career. I can't wait!
For even more interviews, tips, audition info and giveaways, sign up for our FREE e-newsletter.

Latest Posts


Margo Moritz, Courtesy Alonzo King LINES Ballet

How Adult Students Can Prep for a Safe Return to the Studio

After a year (or more) of virtual classes, it's finally time to unplug and head back to the studio.

Exciting? Absolutely. A little scary? Definitely.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

Feeling Unchallenged? Here’s How to Advocate for Advancement in Your Company

You're performing well year after year, but you're still not being cast in larger roles. Your work ethic and technique are strong, but, for some reason, your director hasn't approached you about advancing in the company. Many dancers face this very dilemma—they're ready for a new challenge, but featured roles or a promotion don't seem to be on the horizon.

When opportunity doesn't knock first, it may be time to approach the door and do some knocking of your own. "I've been having those conversations with my director since I joined, which is rare," says Amanda Morgan, a fifth-year corps de ballet dancer at Pacific Northwest Ballet. She believes directors are waiting for dancers to advocate for themselves. If you're wondering how you can be more proactive, here are a few questions to help prompt your preparation.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Katie Ging Photography, Courtesy Ballet Academy of Pittsburgh

Why This School Decided to Hold Its "Nutcracker" in June

A growing Christmas tree. Angels and mice. Flowers and a sugarplum. Snow. Last week, the curtain rose on a festive performance of The Nutcracker…in June?

The pandemic has brought all sorts of odd workarounds for dance studios, from virtual classes to outdoor performances. But when COVID-19 threatened Ballet Academy of Pittsburgh's annual Nutcracker, the school decided to make an especially bold pivot: to hold it in early June, when most schools are doing their end-of-year summer recitals.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks