Each month we highlight a Prix de Lausanne-related international dance artist.
Birthplace: Los Angeles, Ca U.S.A.
Training: Vera Volkova, Marika Besobrazova, Felia Doubrovska, Antonina Tumkovsky and George Balanchine
Prix de Lausanne: Member of the Jury in 2005 and 2009
Previous companies/positions: Soloist & Ballet Master with New York City Ballet; member of Jerome Robbins’ Ballets USA; Co-Artistic Director of Frankfurt Ballet; Founding Artistic Director (with Kent Stowell) and Director of the School of Pacific Northwest Ballet
Current company/position: Repetiteur with the George Balanchine Trust, staging ballets world-wide
Favorite roles/choreographies: At NYCB, probably the role of Polyhymnia in Apollo; favourite choreography at PNB, Kent Stowell’s The Tragedy of Romeo & Juliet; as a repetiteur, I am in love with whichever Balanchine ballet I happen to be staging at the moment.
Career highlight: One was certainly the opportunity to take Balanchine’s work to his homeland for the first time by staging Theme & Variations for the Kirov Ballet in 1988. But the true highlight of my career has been working with Kent Stowell for 28 years creating PNB and helping hundreds of dancers achieve their potential.
Message to the Prix de Lausanne candidates: I always remember a quote from Alexandra Danilova: “I gave myself to my art and my art repaid me a hundred-fold.” In art, as in life, giving yourself completely and honestly to what is important to you is rarely wasted. What you give will come back to you – often in unexpected and powerful ways. While you are at the Prix, be sure to soak up everything you can from the wonderful dancers, teachers and others you admire and your own art will be forever enriched.
Message to the Prix de Lausanne organisation: My heartfelt thanks to all the members of the Prix de Lausanne staff for the devotion that has given a brilliant start to the careers of so many deserving young dancers. As a member of the jury, it has always been especially meaningful to me that the dedicated focus is on giving a valuable, even life-changing, experience to each participant – not only to the winners.