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Joshua Grant to Retire from PNB at the End of This (2021-22) Season

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From the press release:

Pacific Northwest Ballet Soloist Joshua Grant Announces Retirement at End of Season.

Career will be saluted at Season Encore Performance, June 12, 2022.

SEATTLE, WA — Pacific Northwest Ballet soloist Joshua Grant has announced that after a 21-year dancing career, the majority spent at PNB, he has decided to retire at the end of the 2021-2022 season. Joshua attended Pacific Northwest Ballet School, joined PNB as an apprentice in 2001, and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2002. In 2004 he joined National Ballet of Canada followed, in 2006, by a move to Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. He rejoined PNB’s corps in 2011 and was promoted to soloist in 2015.

“Words do not come easily in describing what I am feeling at this moment,” said Joshua in his announcement. “I feel like my career has flashed by in an instant. It seems like yesterday that I came to my first PNB School summer course and saw the dancers in the company who I had admired from afar for years. To think that now I am saying goodbye to a career which has placed me in the same position to be one of those dancers I looked up to for so many years is quite overwhelming.

“I have been blessed by working with some of the foremost choreographers and stagers of the world, some of whom have become my good friends and colleagues. I have had the opportunity to dance some of the most incredible ballets created and have been able to stretch myself artistically in a larger capacity than I ever imagined. And then there are my colleagues. My time shared on that stage with the incredible dancers of PNB is what I will miss most. We are a rare breed, from all walks of life, and yet we come together symbiotically through our obsession of dance.

“Retiring from a ballet dancer’s career is, in a word, onerous. They say that dancers die twice, and this could not be more true. But I will forever remember the words of Wendy Whelan (former New York City Ballet principal and current Associate Artistic Director) who said ‘I may stop being a performer, but I will never stop being a dancer.’”

Joshua will devote his post-PNB career to running his school, Dance Conservatory Seattle, which he launched in 2021 with his husband and co-artistic director Christopher E. Montoya and managing director Sierra Keith. Located in the South Park neighborhood, Dance Conservatory Seattle provides a safe-space and inclusive access to dance, embracing all bodies, identities, and cultures. Said Joshua, “I speak for both Chris and myself in saying that we are thrilled to throw ourselves fully into this new endeavor.” (For more information, visit DanceConservatorySeattle.com.)

 “Josh Grant has been an invaluable and steadfast part of Pacific Northwest Ballet,” said Artistic Director Peter Boal. “His student and early corps de ballet years preceded my arrival, but after a stint with National Ballet of Canada and an extended star turn with Les Ballets Trockadero, I was both pleased and proud to welcome Josh back as a guest artist for PNB's Laugh Out Loud Festival as the Dying Swan in his size-17 pointe shoes. Comedy was just one facet of his many talents: Josh is an individual and artist of great depth. His partnering is a lesson in skill, selflessness, and generosity. His athleticism reigned in contemporary works by Jiri Kylian, David Dawson, Christopher Wheeldon, Justin Peck, and Crystal Pite. A gifted choreographer, committed teacher, and emotional rock to many around him, we remain grateful to Josh for his strengths and his humanity.”

Added Josh’s friend and colleague, Leta Biasucci: “Charismatic, whip smart, and hilarious, Josh and I became fast friends when I joined and he returned to PNB in 2011. Since then, we’ve shared holidays, birthdays, two adjoining barre spots, and a beautiful friendship. Josh’s effortless partnering, elegant presence, and brilliant comedic chops will be missed in so many roles he’s danced in his remarkable career. His levity, steadfastness, humor, and professionalism will be just as sorely missed in the studio. Josh is a bright light at PNB and is able to bring a smile to anyone’s face with just a few words. It has been such a pleasure to watch as his many talents and deep dedication to his craft have shined new light on his dance studio, Dance Conservatory Seattle. His commitment to this new chapter in his life has been inspiring to witness, and I can’t wait to see where his journey goes.”

Early support funding for Dance Conservatory Seattle was provided, in part, by Second Stage, PNB’s career transition program for its company dancers. Conceived in 1999, Second Stage supports PNB dancers in achieving their goals following a career in dance. Its resources allow dancers to take classes, access mentors and vocation counseling, and receive grants. At its inception, only a handful of dancers actively planned for their career after dance. Since that time, Second Stage has provided over $1.1 million in grants to over 200 dancers. For more information, visit PNB.org.

Joshua’s career will be celebrated at PNB’s annual Season Encore Performance on Sunday, June 12, 2022. For tickets and information, visit PNB.org.

Joshua Grant is from Niceville, Florida. He trained at Northwest Florida Ballet, Harid Conservatory, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School, and he attended summer courses at Virginia School of the Arts, the Rock School, Harid Conservatory, and PNB School. Joshua joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2001 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2002. In 2004, he joined National Ballet of Canada, and in 2006, he joined Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo. He performed as a principal dancer with Trockadero until 2011, when he rejoined PNB as a member of the corps de ballet. He was promoted to soloist in 2015.

Joshua has performed leading roles in George Balanchine’s Agon, Coppélia, Emeralds, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker®, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Prodigal Son, Stravinsky Violin Concerto, and Symphony in C; Lew Christensen’s Il Distratto; Kyle Davis’ A Dark and Lonely Space; David Dawson’s Empire Noir and A Million Kisses to my Skin; Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven; William Forsythe’s In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated and New Suite; Kiyon Gaines’ Sum Stravinsky; Ronald Hynd’s The Sleeping Beauty; Jiri Kylian’s Forgotten Land and Petite Mort; Jessica Lang’s Her Door to the Sky; José Limón’s The Moor’s Pavane; Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Roméo et Juliette; Peter Martins’ Fearful Symmetries; Benjamin Millepied’s 3 Movements; Margaret Mullin’s Lost in Light; Matthew Neenan’s Bacchus; Justin Peck’s Debonair and In the Countenance of Kings; Crystal Pite’s Emergence and Plot Point; Alexei Ratmansky’s Concerto DSCH and Pictures at an Exhibition; Jerome Robbins’ Dances at a Gathering and The Concert; Kent Stowell’s Carmina Burana, Cinderella, Nutcracker, and Swan Lake; Susan Stroman’s TAKE FIVE…More or Less; Price Suddarth’s Signature; Lynne Taylor-Corbett’s Ballad of You and Me; and Twyla Tharp’s Nine Sinatra Songs, Waiting at the Station, and Waterbaby Bagatelles. He originated leading roles in Donald Byrd’s Love and Loss, Miles Pertl’s Wash of Gray, Price Suddarth’s The Intermission Project, and Christopher Wheeldon’s Tide Harmonic.

With Les Ballets Trockadero de Monte Carlo, Joshua performed leading roles in Chopiniana, Gaîté Parisienne, Giselle, Go for Barocco, Majisimas, Paquita, Pas de Quatre, Swan Lake, Trovatiara, Vivaldi Suite, and La Vivandiere. He also performed the solo Dying Swan. At National Ballet of Canada, he performed leading and featured roles in John Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet, Michel Fokine’s Petrushka, and James Kudelka’s Désir and Nutcracker. He also originated the role of the Horse in Kudelka’s An Italian Straw Hat. Joshua has performed the Dying Swan as a guest artist on the Titus Command Gala in Dallas and for PNB’s Laugh Out Loud! Festival. In 2008, he performed on the Royal Variety Show at London’s Palladium Theatre in the presence of HRH Prince Charles. In 2021 he choreographed Bright Young Things for PNB’s NEXT STEP choreographers’ showcase.


There just aren't enough "sad" emojis, but I'm so glad for him that he has a fantastic project started to which to transition into the next phase of his artistic life.  :flowers:

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