Our Monthly “Meet The Artist” Series: Elisa Alexander
Charlottesville Ballet’s “Meet the Artist” profiles return for the 2011-2012 Season!
This November issue features company dancer Elisa Alexander– check out her interview below and look for her new choreography in Charlottesville Ballet’s performances at Miki Liszt’s First Fridays Dance Series. Enjoy!
Name: Elisa Alexander
Astrological Sign: Libra… the charmer
Hometown: Kearneysville,West Virginia
Role in C’ville Ballet: Dancer, Photographer
Book: Pride and Prejudice, Harry Potter, Crime and Punishment
Movie: Waiting for Guffman; The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly; Singin’ in the Rain; and An Affair to Remember
Musician/Band: Oh man, I love so many– but the top listened to on my iTunes are probably Iron & Wine, Amos Lee, The Avett Brothers, Damien Rice, Stanley Brothers, Hank Williams, and Bob Dylan
Quotation: “Are you going to do something? Or just stand there and bleed?”-Tombstone
Spot in C’ville: Ivy Creek and Sugar Hollow. I love the hiking around C’ville!
NERDY BALLET QUESTIONS
Well, I started dancing when I was three because my older sisters were dancing. I took classes at a local studio in Inwood, West Virginia until the 5th grade. I then went to a strictly ballet studio from the 5th to the 10th grade. My teacher, Joyce Morrison, was a great influence to my dancing.
I then moved away from home to spend the rest of my high school years at Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan. I would consider these years as the most influential in all of my training. I started taking modern classes and was introduced to new ideas of what dance is and could be.
After graduating high school I attended the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati in Ohio. My teachers there were fabulous and I learned to refine my technique and was
encouraged to develop my personal artistry. There was also a great support system among the dancers, and I feel that I was truly blessed to attend CCM. I then spent my first and second professional year at Charlottesville Ballet.
What genres of dance do you enjoy?
My favorite dance genre is contemporary ballet, but I also enjoy classical ballet, modern, and jazz.
What kind of pointe shoe do you wear?
I just switched to Bloch Serenades and I also wear Sansha Recitals.
Favorite dancers or role models?
My role models have always been my parents and older siblings. I have learned everything from watching them my entire life. My boyfriend Dave is also a great influence on my life. He is the most caring, encouraging and amazing person I have ever met. As for favorite dancers, I can say that my favorite dancers usually come right from my own classes.
Do you have a favorite ballet:
I love live performances because there is something so exciting and lovely about watching dance as it happens. But I also spend hours on YouTube watching dance– I find myself watching Jiri Kylian’s Petite Mort and Twyla Tharp’s In the Upper Room over and over.
What’s your favorite ballet/dance step:
I love pirouettes and grande allegro!
What other talents or passions do you have?
I have a great passion for photography. Whenever I have time off you can find me with my camera working on a photography project. I cannot wait to get a DSLR someday for my work with dance photography. I also make jewelry as a creative outlet.
You can see some of my recent rehearsal photos here:
Anything else you’d like to express:
I am excited to be working on my own choreography for the Miki Liszt First Fridays show on November 4th. You can see a preview of the new work on my Facebook page here: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Elisa-D-Alexander/. Come out to the McGuffey Arts Center to support the arts and Charlottesville Ballet!
Elisa’s full professional bio can be found online at www.CharlottesvilleBallet.org.
Thanks for enjoying our “Meet the Artist” segment– and look for a new Charlottesville Ballet artist profile next month!