LOURDES LOPEZ / ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

YOUR Top Moments!

Now that we have heard from both our fans and dancers about their favorite moments from the 2013-2014 Season, we can truly say that this has been one exceptional year of ballet! While our dancers bring this art form to life, audience members and fans like you make the hard work and dedication worthwhile — enhancing the purpose of our craft. Creating a meaningful connection between our dancers and audience is really what ballet is all about. We hope you have enjoyed the journey through our 2013-2014 Season as much as we have and can’t wait to do it all again with a range of exciting works next season!

Now, here are some of YOUR favorite moments from the season! Thanks so much for sharing these memories with us!

Rene G Cruz:
1. The return of Mary Carmen Catoya as the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker and her Cavalier Renato…a magical moment in Broward.
2. Suzanne Limbrunner’s interpretation of ‘Coffee’…priceless.
3. Program III…outstanding….West Side Story and Sarah Esty’s voice, among others.
4. Don Quixote…superb…loved Emily Bromberg and Catoya in the Dream Scene.
5. Last but not least….Serenade.
It was a wonderful season, congratulations to all the staff, dancers and support personnel…BRAVO.

Serenade

MCB dancers in Balanchine’s ‘Serenade’ (Program I: First Ventures).

Joanna Benech:
West Side Story and Don Quixote were my favorites but the entire season rocked! I enjoyed them all. Looking forward to next season. Last time the company performed Romeo and Juliet I lost my tickets and could not make it. I cried for hours…

Candice:
My daughter is an aspiring ballerina. I took her to see The Nutcracker this Christmas. It was her first time going to the ballet to see a performance. She was mesmerized the entire time. It was one of the most amazing experiences both of us had ever had. We cannot wait to see Romeo and Juliet this year. You all are amazing! Thank you so much for a life changing moment for my daughter.

The Nutcracker

Ashley Knox in ‘Snow’ from ‘George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker.’

Mira Treatman:
My favorite moment was when my favorite young dancer, Nathalia Arja, got promoted because I had been following her career and really enjoying her youthful spirit in performance!

Jessica:
Don Quixote was great! I love it.

Heidi Rich:
Jardí Tancat and Polyphonia were splendid! I hope they stay in the rep. West Side Story was such a treat! Totally loved Ballo della Regina, which was the icing on the cake! I loved every minute of every program!

Sean Chambers:
There were so many [ballets] I couldn’t possibly narrow it down to just one!

Fiona Scott:
Absolutely loved West Side Story, as I have never seen a ballet before where the dancers sang. Jeanette Delgado was spectacular!

West Side Story

Jeanette Delgado and Reyneris Reyes in Jerome Robbins’ ‘West Side Story Suite’ (Program III: Triple Threat).

Nicole Hatch:
I attended a performance of Don Quixote in Miami and was thrilled to see Mary Carmen Catoya performing once again. The performance was stunning on all levels. The stage setting, scenery and costumes were beautiful. The artistry and technical ability of the dancers was impeccable. I feel so fortunate to have such a strong ballet company as my own local company. 

Susan Mark:
I especially enjoyed Ballo della Regina with the lovely ballerina, Nathalia Arja. I originally saw Merrill Ashley dance it with the New York City Ballet.

Joelle Parra:
My top moment was getting to see the Miami City Ballet perform Don Quixote. It was my first time EVER seeing MCB live — and it was even more mesmerizing than I had imagined. Thanks for a magical night of art in motion.

Don Quixote

Jennifer Kronenberg and Reyneris Reyes in ‘Don Quixote’.

Becoming a Triple Threat: DANCE

Our dancers kicked off their pointe shoes and slipped into sneakers and heels for the premiere of West Side Story Suite. Watch how they learned Jerome Robbins’ big, Broadway dance moves in our final video of the ‘Triple Threat’ series. There is only one more chance to catch West Side Story Suite during Program III: Triple Threat at the Kravis Center (Palm Beach) this weekend – Feb. 28-Mar. 2.

Becoming a Triple Threat – ACT

The process of preparing for West Side Story Suite has been entirely unique, presenting a several new challenges for our dancers. Not only must they master the jazzy, Broadway style of Jerome Robbins’ choreography, but they also must learn to act and sing in front of a live audience! Each week before the Company opens in a new theater, look out for a new video featuring our dancers’ pursuit to become true Triple Threats!

Read more about our West Side Story Suite premiere in The Miami Herald and learn about Balanchine’s Episodes — another new work in Program III — in our blog post from dancer Jovani Furlan.

For more information and tickets on on Program III: Triple Threat click here!

A Chance to Shine

Not many apprentices get the opportunity to perform a leading role in their first year with a professional ballet company. However, during Program II: See the Music, one of MCB’s newest members had that chance! Leanna Rinaldi writes about her experience learning and performing Nacho Duato’s Jardí Tancat below.

Leanna Rinaldi

Leanna Rinaldi

Having the opportunity to perform Jardí Tancat, choreographed by Nacho Duato, is an absolute honor. As an apprentice, the first few days of rehearsals were a little intimidating, being around such amazing dancers. To be quite frank, learning and executing the choreography for Jardí Tancat was the most challenging thing I’ve ever done mentally, emotionally and physically. Luckily, we had répétituer Kevin Irving patiently teaching us and showing us how each meticulous movement should be executed. The steps in Jardí Tancat are unlike what we usually do at the ballet. In most ballets we almost always have to pull ourselves up and think of being weightless, while in Jardí Tancat we have to be grounded deep into the floor and be heavy with our movements. I’ve always loved this style of dance and I had a lot of modern training when I was younger, so it was refreshing to kick off those pointe shoes and have the opportunity to dance this wonderful piece. The first time I performed it onstage was very surreal. It felt like I had a deep relationship with each dancer onstage and could feel everyone’s energy and emotion. There are no wings, so there are no distractions coming from offstage. We just have each other and the music. We were so proud of what we had accomplished together. Dancing Jardí Tancat was so exhilarating that when it came time for bows, I asked myself, “What just happened?”  It was truly an amazing experience and I feel like it has pushed me as a dancer and helped with other areas of my dancing.  Jardí Tancat  is an experience that I will cherish for the rest of my career! – Leanna

Leanna rehearsing with Shimon Ito.

Leanna rehearsing with Shimon Ito. Photo by Daniel Azoulay.

Leanna and the cast of Jardi Tancat.

Leanna and the cast of Jardi Tancat.

There is still time catch Leanna perform in, what the Miami New Times called, “a gem, a major addition to the company repertory… beautiful” during Program II: See the Music at the Kravis Center. Get your tickets here!

 

Welcome to Miami Jordan Matter!

Anyone recognize this photo?

Jordan Matter's 'Dancers Among Us'

Jordan Matter’s ‘Dancers Among Us’

If you know and love this image, along with several other awe-inspiring dance photos, than you have probably heard of photographer Jordan Matter and his New York Times bestseller Dancers Among Us. This week, Jordan takes his talents to the Magic City to exhibit his work at Spectrum Miami and Select Fair, both running December 4-8th in Midtown and South Beach respectively. During his visit, Jordan will also partake in two live photo shoots with Miami City Ballet dancers Renan Cerdeiro, Jovani Furlan and Emily Bromberg!

The first shoot will take place during the Opening Preview of Spectrum Miami on Wednesday, December 4, from 6-10pm (come before 8pm to make sure you catch the shoot). This will be a rare opportunity to preview Jordan’s exhibit and see how he works with the dancers to capture these extraordinary shots.

The fun continues on Thursday, December 5, when Jordan and MCB dancers hit up South Beach for a live photo shoot on Ocean Drive! Follow us on Twitter #JordanShootsMCB to find our exact location and times to come out and watch the photo shoot!

Jordan already has some experience shooting MCB dancers -- here's a shot of former MCB dancer and 'Dancing with the Stars' contestant Alex Wong!

Jordan already has some experience shooting MCB dancers — here’s a shot of former MCB dancer and ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ contestant Alex Wong!

A MAGICAL Sneak Peek!

Nothing brings in the holidays better than Miami City Ballet’s production of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker™! With Thanksgiving just days away, here’s a special preview of the magic we’ll be making onstage to officially kickoff the holiday season. Enjoy!

GET TICKETS NOW! 

Make Dreams Come True on Give Miami Day!

Tomorrow is Give Miami Day! Make sure to visit GiveMiamiDay.com to help us raise money for  scholarships at MCB School. Below, MCB School student Michael Holden shares how scholarship support has made the difference in his development as a professional dancer!

TOMORROW:

Visit GiveMiamiDay.org > Search Miami City Ballet > and make your gift!

Michael Holden

Michael Holden

My name is Michael Holden and I am from Falmouth Maine, which is a small suburb of Portland, Maine. I started dancing at the age of 3 in a little ballet/tap “combo” class. I  worked my way up through the school into the attached company — the Maine State Ballet. I had heard of Miami City Ballet from two Maine State Ballet alumni — the Esty twins. I wanted to experience a larger school with new teachers and a different atmosphere to work and enhance my technique. My mom and I came down to Miami to audition to see everything in person — it was awe-inspiring. Right before I boarded the plane to return to Maine, I checked my email one more time. I was accepted to the school and could not have been happier. Along with receiving the acceptance, I also received a scholarship, which made it all the more exciting. Having a scholarship means the world to me because ballet is my world! Without a scholarship, I wouldn’t be able to further the art and fulfill my passion. When Donors invest in us dancers, we are able to dedicate ourselves fully to training in the school. We then as professional dancers in the company are able to give back by performing, showing culture, and most importantly, doing what we love.

Michael taking company class with Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez.

Michael taking company class with Artistic Director Lourdes Lopez. Follow Michael on Instagram @obviouslyme.

Mastering the Duato Style

Last week, répétiteur and Artistic Director of Oregon Ballet Theatre Kevin Irving visited our studios to teach our dancers Nacho Duato’s Jardí Tancat. This profoundly Spanish, soulful work challenged our dancers to move differently, breaking free from their typical ballet vocabulary. Dancer Chase Swatosh describes his experience learning Duato’s unique choreography below!

Chase Swatosh

Chase Swatosh

Rehearsing Jardí Tancat and trying to learn Nacho Duato’s distinctive movement vocabulary was an awesome experience. I feel like every time I learn a new dance style, a new technique, or a new physical activity I gain a deeper knowledge about my own physicality and the amazing multitude of ways in which our bodies can move. There were many challenges for me in learning this new style of movement that is so different from classical technique. The movement in Jardí Tancat is characterized by parallel positions, a low center of gravity, fluidity, and gestures of sowing seeds, harvesting, and yearning for raindrops (Jardí Tancat means “enclosed garden” in Catalan). The movement has a heaviness to it, requiring the dancers to stay low to the ground and use the momentum of their body weight and head to link steps together, instead of maintaining an upright center the whole time. This can be disorienting to the dancer in certain moments, but perfectly necessary in order to achieve the right movement quality that creates the atmosphere of Jardí Tancat. We were fortunate to have the ins and outs of this piece taught to us patiently and articulately by répétiteur Kevin Irving. He was a pleasure to work with and really gave us a sense of the spirit of Jardí Tancat and the purpose behind the movement. I can’t wait to perform this piece and share it with our audience as part of an incredible Program II. I hope that you will get as much out of it as I do!

Chase getting partnering tips from Kevin Irving

Chase getting partnering tips from Kevin Irving

Renan Cerdeiro and Jeanette Delgado in Jardi Tancat.

Renan Cerdeiro and Jeanette Delgado in Jardi Tancat.

Catch Chase and the rest of our dancers perform this work live during Program II: See the Music!

Arsht Center: January 10-12
Broward Center: January 24-26
Kravis Center: January 31-February 2

GET TICKETS NOW!

Suzette Logue gets behind the lens!

We are back in performance mode this week, as we prepare for our Season Opening at the Kravis Center this weekend! First Ventures has been the perfect way to start the new season. From George Balanchine’s Serenade — the first ballet he created in America — to Christopher Wheeldon’s “edgy and electrifying Polyphonia“, as described by the Miami Herald, and Balanchine’s  joyful, virtuoso Ballo della Regina, each ballet inspires a sense of excitement and anticipation for the rest of the season. To create lasting memories and capture our final performances of Program I: First Ventures on Instagram is corps de ballet dancer Suzette Logue!

Suzette Logue

Suzette Logue

We asked Suzette what ballets she is most excited to perform this weekend. Here’s what she said!

‘Ballo Della Regina’ and ‘Serenade’ are two of my favorite ballets to perform. There is such great energy in Ballo and Serenade has a soft but commanding presence that captures you from the moment the curtain goes up!

Look for Suzette onstage this weekend!

Suzette and Adrianne Carter having a 'merde' moment before 'Serenade' backstage.

Suzette and Adrianne Carter having a ‘merde’ moment before ‘Serenade’ backstage.

For a sneak peek at the ballets we are performing this weekend, check out the following blog posts!

Catch Program I: First Ventures at the Kravis Center this weekend, Friday, November 15 – Sunday, November 17! GET TICKETS NOW!

Headshot © Gio Alma.

 

 

 

What’s on INSTAGRAM this week?

Tonight, the worlds of Broadway and ballet literally collide during our first Open Barre of the 2013-2014 Season. The original Anita from the Broadway production of West Side StoryChita Rivera joins us onstage to discuss working with Jerome Robbins, while the company gives a sneak peek of the “triple threat” premiere of West Side Story Suite. This will be the first time that our dancers test their signing talents in front of a live audience….and to capture it all on Instagram is dancer Jovani Furlan!

Jovani Furlan

Jovani Furlan

Jovani will not only be taking you behind-the-scenes of Open Barre this weekend, but will also be documenting the exciting work happening in our studios next week with Répétiteur and Artistic Director of Oregon Ballet Theatre Kevin Irving. Kevin is here to set Nacho Duato’s Jardí Tancat – the profoundly Spanish, lyrical work that allows our dancers to kickoff their pointe shoes and dance barefoot! As the former ballet master and head of the artistic department with Nacho Duato’s Compañia Nacional de Danza in Spain, Kevin has intimate knowledge of Duato’s choreography that he will instill in our dancers before we bring Jardí Tancat to the stage during Program II: See the Music.

Jeanette Delgado and Renan Cerdeiro in Jardi Tancat.

Jeanette Delgado and Renan Cerdeiro in Jardi Tancat.

Sneak peek of the action on Instagram!

Sneak peek of the action on Instagram!

Make sure to follow Jovani on Instagram #JovaniMCBphotos to catch all of the exciting happenings here at the ballet!

Want more on Chita Rivera? Check out our Pinterest Board to see more legendary roles performed by one of Broadway’s leading ladies!

Photos:
Headshot © Daniel Azoulay.
Jardí Tancat © Gio Alma.