Simone Messmer is leaving ABT for a soloist position at San Francisco Ballet. She gave an interview with Time Out Magazine on why she decided to leave. The full Interview is here: http://www.timeout.c...cision-to-leave
A few interesting quotes from Simone:
Time Out New York: Why are you leaving ABT?
Simone Messmer: In the full-length classicals, my rep has gone as far as it can go. There’s only so much you can do with a two-minute variation—you can continue to play with it, but after a while it gets a little dry. I do a lot of rep in the fall [season], and I’ve worked a lot with choreographers. But for some reason, maybe because the rep shows don’t sell as well as the full-lengths, they are not considered at an equal level as doing a Swan Lake. So getting promoted or moving up or getting more—you have to get those ballets, and they won’t give them to me.
Time Out New York: I would trade an “exciting” performance for people just trying something and dancing differently.
Simone Messmer: Dancing differently—I want to go to the ballet and see ballet. I don’t want to go to the ballet and see gymnastics. Again, it’s a taste thing. I wish that ABT would put validity in the theater part of American Ballet Theatre; we are the only company that has all of this rep and the possibility to really make those theater things amazing and fresh again. And I’m an actress. There needs to be more focus on what you say when you point your foot and what you say in your transition steps. We just don’t have the rehearsal time to break it down. I hope to come back here one day, but right now it’s not a place where I can be an artist or grow.
Time Out New York: But when you joined, the company was different. How did it change?
Simone Messmer: How do you explain Nina? How do you explain Alex? And Julio [Bocca]? They used to invite me to warm up with them backstage before their shows, because they knew I was going to warm up anyway, and they knew I took Willy’s class. Now everybody’s out for their own, and you can’t fault them because that’s the way things are going these days, but they used to put the effort into that—into knowing the company and in showing the company how they do it and what they do to get there. And you know, Irina and Max, always… [Irina Dvorovenko and Maxim Beloserkovsky]. When people started getting injured my second or third year in the company, they were the ones that went in the office and said, “Simone can do the pas de trois” [in Swan Lake].