For the first time, Pennsylvania Ballet II is performing four new dance works created on the dancers of the company by four talented choreographers with deep connection to Philadelphia ballet scene. The program is hosted by PA Ballet’s artistic director, Angel Corella with one hour of performance, followed by a reception. Before the special one-night-only performance, some of the talented choreographers took a moment to talk to Phindie about their choreographies and their thoughts.
Alexandra Hughes began her dance training at age 4 and continued her training at the Adirondack Repertory Dance Theater under former Joffrey Ballet principal dancer Pamara Perry, then at the North Carolina School of the Arts. She also attended one of the most competing ballet school, the School of American Ballet in New York City for four years, where she was chosen to perform featured roles in multiple New York Choreographic Workshops.
She joined Pennsylvania Ballet as an Apprentice in 2011, and was promoted to the Corps de Ballet the next season, performing several works, including some solo and principal roles in both classical and modern/contemporary ballet. [The Prince Theater, 1412 Chestnut Street] February 25, 2017; paballet.org.
Phindie: Can you tell me how you came up with your choreography?
Alexandra Hughes: I first decided on music “Keep in Touch” by Nico Muhly. When we talk with our friends or anyone, at the end of conversation we would say “keep in touch”, but often we might end up never contacting the person again. I wanted to make a ballet about relationships between people, friendships, love relationships or any other form of relationships and how we interact with others. As the theme shows, the ending of my piece is not exactly a happy ending. I wanted it to be electric and real.
Phindie: What is your favorite part of your choreography?
Alex: It is 12 minutes of dancing, and towards the climax the movement gets more exciting and intense.
Phindie: What is your special moment of this workshop?
Alex: Moving with the dancers, envisioning and bringing our feeling and passion to the world. While working with the seven dancers from PA Ballet II, I wanted to help them develop their dance not only technically but also emotionally. Just taking one step can express variety of emotions. Fortunately, I have experienced working with lots of amazing choreographers, and I hope my experiences are helpful to the dancers, too.
[The Prince Theater, 1412 Chestnut Street] February 25, 2017; paballet.org.