I am writing to you from Miami as I am here working with Miami City Ballet, staging Nacho Duato’s “Jardi Tancat”, which MCB will premiere in early January 2014.
Although the weather is beautiful here (and hot!) I do miss PDX; I have already fallen quite head over heels for the City of Roses, even though it has really only been three months since I arrived. It is somewhat unusual for me to be away from OBT for an extended period of time, but this staging is one that I had committed to long before I was chosen as Artistic Director in Portland. Working with the dancers of Miami City Ballet has been wonderful so far, they are responding to Duato’s work in much the same way that the dancers of OBT did when I was staging “Por Vos Muero” at the start of this season.
This ballet, however, was Nacho’s very first and it is quite demanding in how “deep” the positions are. Whereas in classical ballet the dancer is always trying to lift up out of the floor and to achieve lightness – in Nacho’s work (and most especially in his earliest work), one is asked to get very low and close to floor and I can tell you – it involves a whole different set of muscles!
So we are, all of us, very sore after just a couple of days working on Jardi! But there is a wonderful group here in Miami and I am really looking forward to seeing them progress in this inspiring ballet.
Which reminds me – it is only a few short weeks ago that OBT premiered “Por Vos Muero” – I hope you all had a chance to see it! I was so incredibly pleased and proud of the dancers of OBT and thought that every one of them brought all their talent and unique personalities into the work in a way that was very inspiring. It was a great way to begin this new chapter at OBT. Soon we will be hard at work on The Nutcracker – and I assure you that we will continue to shine in this holiday tradition as much as we did in DREAM! I hope you and your extended families are planning to join us.
Looking forward to seeing you all again soon –