Few would think of the cheerfully loosey-goosey choreography for the sneater-clad "stompers" in TwylaTtharp's In the Upper Room as technical. Yet when Miami City Ballet principal soloist Alex Wong blazed through the stompers' bouncy leaps and backward jogs this spring, he epitomized virtuosic technique. Wong's precise classical style and fine-tuned musicality lent the high-speed role -- which most dancers are lucky just to survive -- polish and panache. And in a work defined by explosive displays of energy, Wong crackled with a singular electricity. His jumps were the most buoyant, his joyful intensity unmatched.
This honor puts Wong in the company of the likes of Natalia Osipova, Alina Cojocaru, Sterling Hyltin, Riomara Lorenzo, Jonathan Poretta, and Marie-Agnes Gillot. (10 women; only 2 men).
It will be interesting to see what opportunities Edward Villella will be able to provide to keep Wong performing at top level for MCB, while challenging him to expand his talent in new directions.