Blind dates of a different kind: Photoessay from dancer Ayesha Lucido

The new year brings with it new opportunities and in late January, ten of our junior company members travelled to Stuttgart to begin working with Eric Gauthier on his upcoming creation for our Spring Matinee series. For a week, Theaterhaus Stuttgart became their temporary home and the ballet studio a witness for a birth of a different kind.

The beginning of a new creation works like a blind date: the choreographer and the dancers meet for the first time and it’s only through a conversation that they begin to find common ground between them… the creation. With its delicate balance between awkwardness and excitement, between listening and reflecting, between courage and vulnerability, the first dates in a creative process set a trajectory in motion.

When second dates blur into third and fourths, the choreographer and dancers become more familiar with one another and a piece starts to emerge beyond them. Fragments of disparate movements evolve into phrases of sculpted dance and very quickly the personality and shape of the creation begins to find its own form.

With the common goal of the premiere date on the horizon, it is inevitable that a new ballet will be shared with an audience beyond the studio. However, it is often in these first moments of a creative process, one where the feeling that ‘anything is possible’ reigns high, that the basis of the creation is born.

And just as any child finds their legs and begins to walk, it is their initial stumbles that form the character building basis for each step that follows. What Eric Gauthier’s new creation with the dancers will look like by the time the curtain opens at 11am on 14th April is perhaps already written in the stars… one thing is certain though… many more hours of hard work in the studio lie ahead before then.

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