Boston Ballet's Kathleen Breen Combes, María Álvarez and Dawn Atkins. Christopher Duggan, Courtesy Jacob's Pillow.

Onstage This Week: Jacob's Pillow Wraps Up With Boston Ballet, Grand Rapids Ballet's Garden Performance and More!

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


Jacob's Pillow's 2019 Fest Closes With Boston Ballet

We know that summer's coming to an end when the annual Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival wraps up. August 21-25, The Pillow closes its 2019 season with Boston Ballet. The company returns for the first time in over 10 years with a contemporary program including William Forsythe's Playlist (EP), Leonid Yakobson's Pas de Quatre and Rodin, and Jorma Elo's Bach Cello Suites.

Grand Rapids Ballet Brings Dance Outdoors

On August 20, Grand Rapids Ballet makes its debut performance at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park's Tuesday Evening Music Club, dancing under the summer sky. GRB will bring a mix of its best-loved contemporary and classical ballets; the program includes Trey McIntyre's Wild Sweet Love, Danielle Rowe's For Pixie, artistic director James Sofranko's Sweet By & By and more.

Kansas City Ballet Shares Dance With All 

Kansas City Ballet opens its doors to the greater Kansas City community on August 24. The company's jam-packed 9th annual KC Dance Day features free dance classes, performances by local schools and dance companies, and an open KCB rehearsal. The rehearsal, running from 5:00-6:00 pm, offers a unique behind-the-scenes chance to see the company in action.

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Complexions Contemporary Ballet's Tatiana Melendez Proves There's No One Way to Have a Ballet Career

This is Pointe's Fall 2020 cover story. Click here to purchase this issue.

Talk to anyone about rising contemporary ballerina Tatiana Melendez, and one word is bound to come up repeatedly: "Fierce." And fair enough, that's a perfectly apt way to describe the 20-year-old's stage presence, her technical prowess and her determination to succeed. But don't make the mistake of assuming that fierceness is Melendez's only (or even her most noteworthy) quality. At the core of her dancing is a beautiful versatility. She's just as much at ease when etching pure classical lines as she is when boldly throwing herself off-balance.

"Selfish choreographer that I am, I want Tatiana to stay with Complexions for all time," says her boss Dwight Rhoden, Complexions Contemporary Ballet's co-artistic director and resident choreographer. "She has a theatricality about her: When the music comes on, she gets swept away." Not too shabby for someone who thought just a few years ago that maybe ballet wasn't for her.

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Cheryl Mann, Courtesy Joffrey Ballet

2020 Stars of the Corps: The Joffrey Ballet's Dara Holmes

A seasoned dancer, Dara Holmes' career with The Joffrey Ballet has consisted of a lot of heavy lifting in the ensemble. "As a new company member, I was onstage all the time," says Holmes, 28. "The older you get, the more you start to appreciate your body and want to preserve it. If I want to keep dancing and do bigger roles, I need to be healthy."

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Jeremy Kyle, Courtesy Laubacher

My First Month as a Professional Dancer in the Age of COVID-19

I moved to Eugene, Oregon, in August, brimming with nerves and excitement to launch my career as an aspirant with Eugene Ballet. After months of quarantining at home in Pittsburgh because of the coronavirus lockdown, transitioning to my new life on the West Coast marked a rapid shift. But in time, it granted me newfound feelings of security. For starters, the ritual of filling up my water bottle, packing my shoes and leotard, putting up my hair and walking into the studio reintroduced a much needed flow of normalcy into my life.

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