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More Dancers Leaving by End of 2010-11 SeasonLowenberg, Wevers, Milov, Spell, Eames, Kerollis


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#1 sandik

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Posted 24 January 2011 - 12:47 PM

Pacific Northwest Ballet Dancer Stacy Lowenberg Announces Retirement

Following a 17-Year Career, Final Performances During 2010-2011 Season

Seattle, WA – Pacific Northwest Ballet corps de ballet dancer Stacy Lowenberg has announced she will be retiring at the end of the 2010-2011 season, following a 17-year career, 14 years of which were spent with PNB.

"Being a ballet dancer has been a dream come true for me,” said Ms. Lowenberg. “I love what I do and feel honored to have danced professionally for Pacific Northwest Ballet. I have learned so much on this journey and hope everyone who has watched and supported me and been a part of my life will enjoy watching my life evolve into a new beginning and a new journey."

Ms. Lowenberg trained at North Carolina School of the Arts, School of American Ballet, Hungarian National Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. She joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 1994, joined Oregon Ballet Theatre in 1996, and returned to PNB in 1999.

“Stacy has been a cherished presence on our stage for many years,” said PNB Artistic Director Peter Boal. “As a performer she will be missed. We are all excited about her successes in choreography and look forward to the next chapter for this gifted individual.”

Highlights in Ms. Lowenberg's career include Titania, Helena and Hippolyta in A Midsummer Night's Dream; Lilac Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty; Eliot Feld's Intermezzo; George Balanchine's Agon, Divertimento No. 15, Symphony in C, Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet, Emeralds, Serenade (Dark Angel) and The Four Temperaments; Todd Bolender's Souvenirs (Vamp); Twyla Tharp's Nine Sinatra Songs; Hans Van Manen's Five Tangos; Lynn Taylor-Corbett's The Ballad of You and Me and Mercury; William Forsythe's In the middle, somewhat elevated and One Flat Thing, reproduced; Paul Taylor's Roses; Marius Petipa's Paquita; Mark Morris' A Garden; Susan Stroman's Take Five...More or Less; Kent Stowell's Carmina Burana, Nutcracker (Flora, Peacock), Cinderella (Summer Variation), Swan Lake, Firebird, Coppelia (Hymen Solo), and Silver Lining.

Ms. Lowenberg originated leading roles in Val Caniparoli's Torque, Dominique Dumais' Scripted in the Body and Time and Other Matter, Nicolo Fonte's Within/Without, Paul Gibson's Rush, Donald Byrd's Seven Deadly Sins, James Canfield's Charmed Quark (cq) and Paul Vasterling's Seasons.

In addition to her professional dancing career, Ms. Lowenberg is continuing her dedication to her artistry through choreography. She has choreographed seven pieces and received rave reviews. Her works have been shown at McCaw Hall, Bumbershoot, Meydenbauer Theatre and on film for the Beijing Olympics. (The Beijing choreography was danced in Seattle before the 2008 Olympics.) Ms. Lowenberg has choreographed for Ballet Theatre of Des Moines, Pacific Northwest Ballet School, PNB Choreographers’ Showcase, and Ballet Bellevue. She will premiere a new work in Seattle Dance Project’s upcoming “Project 4” performances, January 28 – February 5 at The Erickson Theater on Capitol Hill. (www.seattledanceproject.org)

Ms. Lowenberg has also taught at Pacific Northwest Ballet School. In addition to her dance and choreography career, she is a Stott-certified Pilates instructor for PNB Conditioning and in her own private practice. Ms. Lowenberg has been a lululemon Ambassador and has been featured in Dance Magazine and Dance Europe as well as in the book "Redheads 2010."

In an article written by Francia Russell (PNB Founding Artistic Director), Ms. Russell wrote that "In a wide variety of ballets Stacy Lowenberg has shown she is not only a wonderful dancer but one who can be alternately lyrical, witty, coy, seductive, luscious, and dramatic. Stacy's beauty, personality, and technique complement one another in all her roles and make her an immensely appealing performer. In the studio, Stacy's intelligence and openness ensure that she continues to improve herself. And onstage and off she is a favorite of ballet fans, donors, and volunteers. Stacy is also a captivating teacher of young children when she has time to teach in PNB's School."

#2 Helene

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Posted 31 March 2011 - 04:14 PM

In the press release for the Season Encores Performance, PNB announced that:

In addition to the previously announced departures of principal dancers Ariana Lallone and Jeffrey Stanton as well as corps de ballet dancer Stacy Lowenberg, the Season Encore Performance will be the audience’s chance to offer a fond farewell to company members including principal dancers Stanko Milov and Olivier Wevers, soloist Chalnessa Eames and corps de ballet dancers Barry Kerollis and Josh Spell.

“The Season Encore Performance will be, without a doubt, one of the most memorable performances of the year; a bittersweet opportunity to celebrate a remarkable season while bidding a heartfelt bon voyage to these departing dancers,” said Artistic Director Peter Boal. “PNB and our audiences have been graced by brilliant performances from these company members, in an extraordinary range of roles. They have executed classical, contemporary and character roles all with equal ease. We’ve also witnessed the birth of four innovative choreographers through creations by Barry, Olivier, Stacy and Stanko for our School and Company dancers over the years. They will each be missed as members of our company but we are most grateful for their myriad contributions.”


:( :( :( :(

We have threads about Ariana Lallone's departure and Jeffrey Stanton's retirement.

#3 Helene

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Posted 31 March 2011 - 11:33 PM

There are 44 members of the company plus two apprentices. Eight dancers leaving in one season means over 18% of the company members and over 17% of the company including apprentices are leaving in one season.

There are 13 Principal Dancers on the roster, and with four leaving, that's a change of 30%. There are eight Soloists currently, and we lose one. Losing three corps members of 23 is ~ 13% change.

With both Spell and Kerollis leaving, Kiyon Gaines is the remaining senior corps man from the Russell/Stowell era. Next year there will be three senior corps women remaining in the company: Kylee Kitchens, Brittany Reid, and Jessika Anspach.

#4 SandyMcKean

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 10:13 AM

I'm devastated. I guess the "ballet recession" has finally hit Seattle. Some departures I understand, others I am totally mystified by. I can only hope that this is primarily financially driven.

If anyone hears publicly what the future career plans are for the younger dancers who are leaving, please post it.

#5 Amy Reusch

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Posted 01 April 2011 - 10:33 AM

That's huge...

#6 Jayne

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Posted 02 April 2011 - 06:57 PM

I am not surprised by the departure of Mr. Wevers, as he just signed a JOA for Whim Whim at a nearby theater. That is his passion and he is clearly pursuing it, which is fantastic. Also not surprised by the departure of Mr. Milov, as he injured his elbow before I left for South America, now I am back, and it doesn't seem he has been able to perform in the interim, he did not perform in the recent mixed bill, and is not listed for the opening weekend of MidSummer. I admire the dancing of both men. Add Stanton, and we're losing all the height of our principal men, with the exception of Mr. Bold.

I am more surprised by the departures of Mr. Spell and Mr. Kerollis, although I suppose if they've never been promoted out of the corps after so many years, the writing is on the wall (I still think Mr. Gaines should have been promoted this past September, as he most often performs soloist roles, not corps roles).

#7 SandyMcKean

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Posted 02 April 2011 - 07:30 PM

Add Stanton, and we're losing all the height of our principal men, with the exception of Mr. Bold.

You don't consider Karel Cruz and Seth Orza tall????? Cruz must be 6'4" and is surely the tallest man in the company.

#8 Helene

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Posted 02 April 2011 - 07:37 PM

Karel Cruz is also very tall, and Seth Orza looks tall to me. William Lin-Yee is the only very tall man in the corps, with Tisserand and Bartee looking like the next tallest. Price Suddarth, an apprentice this year, looked tall in "Place a Chill". As Peter Boal only half-joked in a Q&A, "Our average height for women is 5'9". Our average height for men is 5'9"."

Either Peter Boal or Otto Neubert said in a Q&A that they had hoped Milov would be back for "Cinderella", but that didn't happen. In the past he's danced at least Theseus in "A Midsummer Night's Dream"; I saw him in 2004. There is only mime and gesture in Act I, but some lifts in Act II where Theseus partners Hippolyta. I don't know if he's danced Act II Divertissement. In "Giselle" Albrecht and Peasant pas de deux both have partnering and lots of solo dancing, while Hilarion can have some strenuous dancing in Act II and lots of physical mime in Act I. Looking at Encores, only "Nine Sinatra Songs" jumps out to me as an obvious fit, but it's also a fit for Eames, and Spell.

Olivier Wevers' own announcement lists his last performance as 17 April in "A Midsummer Night's Dream", which sounds like his last bow will be as choreographer, which would be bittersweet -- the program is full of works with roles he's performed -- but fitting. "Monster" was performed in January by Ty Alexander Cheng and Kylie Lewallen, both from Spectrum Dance Theatre, Andrew Bartee and Vincent Michael Lopez (also Spectrum), and Melody Herrera (Houston Ballet) and Lucien Postlewaite. I wonder which of the three parts will be presented, and whether the original dancers will perform.

#9 bean

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Posted 03 April 2011 - 03:03 PM

What a sad day for PNB fans.

#10 Helene

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Posted 03 April 2011 - 03:18 PM

Every announcement is another stab :( -- I'm a selfish audience member -- but I hope each departing dancer has something even better in his/her near future.

#11 Jayne

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Posted 03 April 2011 - 08:03 PM

ok, ok, I take it back, we still have two tall male principals, but we need more. Can anyone cite (with links) info for the PNB 2010 budget and going forward? Are they running a deficit? Balanced budget? In the black? It seems to me this will affect whether or not these talented dancers are replaced, or if the company reduces to less than 40 to make numbers work.

In other news, my mother's former school district, where she taught elementary music for 25 years, is seriously considering eliminating all elementary music - choral and orchestra - for the 2012 year. The time teachers have for planning while the kids are in music classes would be made up by shortening the school day by 30 minutes (sending them home early).

We are living in very difficult times, there really just isn't enough money to go around, and the votes are not there to raise taxes (sin, property, or general sales tax) to make up the difference.

#12 sandik

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 09:07 AM

At the Q/A after opening night Josh Spell was the featured dancer, and was very cagey about not saying what he was going to be doing after leaving PNB. He did say that he wanted to keep dancing, and implied that he had at least one possibility in mind -- the impression I got is that he's negotiating a contract somewhere and doesn't want to say anything before the agreement is signed.

As we say in my family, you'll jinx it if you blab.

But I do know for certain that Chalnessa Eames will be performing in a new duet by Twyla Tharp, made for the Command Performance show in Dallas at the Winspear on April 23. This is an annual gala sponsored by TITAS, a music and dance presenter in North Texas. The press release lists her as a part of Twyla Tharp Dance, but she's not a member of the company at this point. She's dancing with Charlie Hodges, who blew everyone away here in the premiere of Afternoon Ball -- I'm hoping that someone in the Dallas area will post about the event.

from the press release

"Repertoire for Command Performance:

Armenia – A TITAS commissioned world premiere by Twyla Tharp. Charles Hodges and Chalnessa Eames.

Cruel World – By James Kadelka. Julie Kent and Guillaume Côté.

Manon Act I Pas de Deux - Julie Kent and Guillaume Côté.

Splendid Isolation III - By Jessica Lang. Alicia Graff and Jamar Roberts

Caught - By David Parsons. Miguel Quiñones.

Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux – By George Balanchine. Yuriko Kajiya and Jared Matthews.

Le Corsaire Grand Pas de Deux - Victoria Jaiani and Miguel Angel Blanco.

Pretty Ballet Pas de Deux – By James Kadelka. Victoria Jaiani and Miguel Angel Blanco.

Dying Swan - Version by Les Ballets Trockadero. Joshua Grant."

And yes, I know there are misspellings there.

#13 SandyMcKean

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 10:05 AM

Chalnessa Eames will be performing in a new duet by Twyla Tharp

I'm so glad to hear that.

I don't "miss" dancers that much except during the period when they actually leave. There are exceptions. Louise Nadeau is one, and I know Chalnessa will be another.

#14 sandik

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Posted 09 April 2011 - 10:25 AM

I don't "miss" dancers that much except during the period when they actually leave. There are exceptions. Louise Nadeau is one, and I know Chalnessa will be another.


I had a very sad moment last night during the Theseus/Hippolyta duet, remembering Stanko Milov as Theseus dancing with Arianna Lallone -- Karel Cruz did a great job, but I missed Milov's regal stature.

#15 Jayne

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Posted 13 April 2011 - 04:52 PM

Rosie Gaynor has an article posted on the website SeattleDances, with more information about the 8 dancers leaving, and stating that PNB plans to audition and fill all 8 positions (so the company is not contracting in size due to the economy).

In the meantime, Peter Boal, head of PNB, is busy auditioning for these eight positions, all of which he plans to fill.


There are rumors about where these dancers will be next season. A few facts float up to the top, however. Some will stay in Seattle. Some plan not to. A few may teach at PNB. Lallone joins Teatro ZinZanni for their fall show. Lowenberg will continue to teach Pilates and will dance locally. Wevers will focus on his successful two-year-old company, Whim W’Him


Best wishes to all, and secretly hoping we'll get Sokvannar Sar back from the east coast!


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