Just a few notes on my 2012 highlights, in no particular order:
- Leanne Stojmenov as Odette/Odile in the new Stephen Baynes Swan Lake – I was in tears by the end of Act II.
- Andrew Killian as Beyond Thirty in the revival of Beyond Twelve – in Melbourne the lovely deep stage opened up at the end and the final walk upstage was into a visibly mundane world. Tears.
- Calvin Hannaford as Beyond Eighteen, with Brooke Lockett as First Love, also in the revival of Beyond Twelve
- Steven Heathcote in Tim Harbour’s Sweedeedee – he has more artistry in his five-years-retired body than many current dancers, and there was fabulous live music
- Daniel Gaudiello and Leanne Stojmenov as Romeo and Juliet, particularly in the “balcony” scene and the death scene – especially Leanne in the death scene, she was clearly just broken and the emotion audibly affected the audience
- Amy Harris finally winning the Ballet Dancer Award, third time nominated clearly the charm
- Yosvani Ramos in Etudes in the 50th anniversary gala – showing off his technique (link to rehearsal video by permission)
- Stuttgart Ballet dancers Elisa Badenes and Daniel Camargo guesting in the 50th anniversary gala, in both their Bruhn Prize piece Little Monsters and the Don Quixote act 3 pas de deux – curtain went up for Little Monsters and 75% of the audience sucked in its breath, and then in Don Q the audience cheered raucously at nearly every move
- Julie Kent of ABT in the bedroom pas de deux from Manon with Adam Bull in the 50th anniversary gala – I’ve never seen Adam that connected with any other partner
- The gorgeous mishmash of costumes used in, and the concept of, Gideon Obarzanek’s There’s Definitely a Prince Involved
- Onegin – finally back in the rep, with the music, the costumes, the requirement for acting and partnering…Brett Simon as Prince Gremin stands out in my mind seven months on
- Lana Jones in Gemini
- Miwako Kubota as Odette
- Madeleine Eastoe’s Odile – minxy!!
- Kevin Jackson’s Lensky
- Jessica Fyfe in her first major solo role as Olga in Onegin
- Amber Scott in After the Rain© – she’d not been cast in this pas de deux previously, but danced it with San Francisco Ballet’s Damian Smith in the 50th anniversary gala, and wow.
Lowlight: Rachel Rawlins’ retirement.