Preview: Start Your Summer With PNB’s NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN At McCaw Hall

NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN by Pacific Northwest Ballet

Everyone’s a winner at Pacific Northwest Ballet’s dance party, NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN. The performance is a one-night-only event on June 15th. Company dancers rise as choreographers, and PNB School’s Professional Division students take centerstage in an all-premiere line-up of new works.

Pacific Northwest Ballet’s annual choreographers’ showcase gets a new name, NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN, as well as a shake-up this year, as original danceworks spill off of the McCaw Hall stage and out onto the grounds of Seattle Center. PNB features a cornucopia of new choreography created in collaboration with the Seattle dance community, in addition to the traditional premieres of works produced by PNB company dancers and set on the Professional Division students of PNB School.

The evening begins outside McCaw Hall at 6pm with rotating performances of three danceworks. This part of the program is free and open to the public. New works include a solo dance created by Donald Byrd and performed by PNB company dancer Christopher D’Ariano, and a major extravaganza in the Kreielsheimer Promenade fountain, choreographed by Miles Pertl and performed by over 40 dance students from PNB School.

Noelani Pantastico’s Picnic was a big hit during Pacific Northwest Ballet’s 2017 “Sculptured Dance” event, so the piece will receive an encore performance during the “OUTSIDE” portion of PNB’s choreographic showcase NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN, Friday, June 15, 2017. The evening will include two other works performed for free outside and around McCaw Hall, then will move “IN” for the premieres of six new works choreographed by Company dancers and performed by PNB School Professional Division students. The “IN” portion of the evening also includes a few pop-up surprises and a post-show dance party. (Photo © Angela Sterling.)

Noelani Pantastico’s Picnic was a big hit during Pacific Northwest Ballet’s 2017 “Sculptured Dance” event, so the piece will receive an encore performance during the “OUTSIDE” portion of PNB’s choreographic showcase NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN, Friday, June 15, 2017. The evening will include two other works performed for free outside and around McCaw Hall, then will move “IN” for the premieres of six new works choreographed by Company dancers and performed by PNB School Professional Division students. The “IN” portion of the evening also includes a few pop-up surprises and a post-show dance party. (Photo © Angela Sterling.)

NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE will also feature an encore performance of Noelani Pantastico’s Picnic, which premiered in the summer of 2017 at the Olympic Sculpture Park. And if you’re tummy starts growling, food trucks and carts from Frankie & Jo’s, Lumpia World, and Roll OK Please will be on hand so you can buy your favorite snack to sate your appetite.

The shindig then moves inside at 7:30 pm for the NEXT STEP: IN portion of the night. For a $25 ticket, you can enjoy six premieres by PNB choreographers Guillaume Basso, Nancy Casciano, Christopher D’Ariano, Cecilia Iliesiu, Amanda Morgan, and Dylan Wald. [For detailed info about these artists, see below.*

Select works in NEXT STEP: IN will be accompanied by Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Conductor and SYSO Music Director Stephen Rogers Radcliffe. The inside portion of the evening also includes a “surprise” piece choreographed by Bruno Roque and danced by Cornish College of the Arts students.

The dance evening also includes pop-up performances by The Purple Lemonade Collective, a post-show Q&A with the choreographers in the Nesholm Family Lecture Hall, and concludes with a dance party in the Grand Lobby. You can show off your dance moves, with DJ Famous spinning the tunes. This is included with your $25 ticket.

Managed by former PNB soloist and current PNB School faculty member, stager, and choreographer Kiyon Ross, NEXT STEP is a vehicle for emerging dance talent. It was originally conceived by PNB Artistic Director and PNB School Director Peter Boal as a strategy to develop emerging choreographic talent, and as a channel for Professional Division students – talented young artists one step away from their professional careers – to participate in the creative process.

“How else do you develop the next Balanchine, the next Twyla Tharp, the next Christopher Wheeldon or Crystal Pite?” Boal muses. “Without that opportunity, the art form doesn’t continue to renew itself.”

Event timeline for NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN

  • 6pm – FREE public performances on Kreielsheimer Promenade, Boeing Green, and inside McCaw Hall main lobby
  • 7:30 pm – NEXT STEP performance inside McCaw Hall, with additional performances at intermission**
  • 9:30 pm – Post-performance Q&A with choreographers in the Nesholm Family Lecture Hall**
  • 10pm – Post-performance dance party in McCaw Hall lobby**

**Admission required

NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN will be presented one night only, on Friday, June 15. All events take place in or around Marion Oliver McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer Street at Seattle Center. Tickets to the “IN” portion of NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN are just $25. Admission includes the six onstage performances, additional pop-up performances around the hall, and admittance to the post-performance Q&A and dance party. Tickets may be purchased through the PNB Box Office: Phone – 206.441.2424, in Person at 301 Mercer Street, or online at PNB.org. Subject to availability, tickets are also available 90 minutes prior to show time at McCaw Hall. But there will be no student or senior rush tickets sold for NEXT STEP.

NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE/IN is a Community Created Event sponsored by Seattle Center Productions, and made possible with generous support from The Wallace Foundation. Special thanks to media sponsor The Evergrey, and event partners Talking Rain and Pacific Science Center.

The free NEXT STEP: OUTSIDE line-up begins at 6pm and will include:

Wake the Neighbor
Music by Kris Bowers
Choreography by Donald Byrd
Danced by Christopher D’Ariano
Performed in the McCaw Hall lobby

Picnic
Music by The Routers
Choreography by Noelani Pantastico
Danced by Pacific Northwest Ballet dancers
Performed on the Boeing Green (lawn behind PNB’s Phelps Center)

Riding the Wave
Music by Deep Throat Choir
Choreography by Miles Pertl
Danced by PNB School Level IV students
Performed in the Kreielsheimer Promenade fountain

NEXT STEP: IN begins at 7:30 pm. The line-up will include:

Prelusion
Music by J.S. Bach
Choreography by Bruno Roque
Danced by Cornish College of the Arts dance students

Looking Through Wonderland
Music by Avi Lasser and Garrett Overcash, performed by SYSO
Choreography by Guillaume Basso
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

We Were Little
Music by Olafur Arnalds, Michael Torke
Choreography by Nancy Casciano
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

Youthquake
Music by Thomas Nickell and Fiona Stocks-Lyons
Choreography by Christopher D’Ariano
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

A Meditation
Music by Jules Massenet, performed by SYSO
Choreography by Cecilia Iliesiu
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

Pages
Music by Ben Lukas Boysen and Sebastian Plano
Choreography by Amanda Morgan
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

For Now
Music by Osvaldo Golijov, performed by SYSO
Choreography by Dylan Wald
Danced by PNB School Professional Division students

About the Artists
Guillaume Basso is from Dijon, France. He trained with Sylvain Boniface at the Conservatory of Dijon and with Bernard Boucher at the Paris Opera Ballet School, and he attended a summer course at Houston Ballet School. Mr. Basso joined Houston Ballet II in 2010 and the Joffrey Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2012 before joining PNB as a member of the corps de ballet in 2015. Mr. Basso was a semi-finalist in the 2010 Prix de Lausanne and 2014 Jackson International Ballet Competition. He also has performed as a guest artist with the Grand Theatre of Dijon.

Donald Byrd has served as the artistic director of Spectrum Dance Theater since 2002. He has created over 100 modern and contemporary dance works for his own groups as well as for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company, Philadelphia Dance Company (Philidanco), Pacific Northwest Ballet, The Joffrey Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem, Aterballetto, MaggioDanza diFirenze, and Oregon Ballet Theater. He is a Tony-nominated choreographer for his work on The Color Purple, and his many awards and prizes include a Masters of Choreography Award from The Kennedy Center, a Fellowship at The American Academy of Jerusalem, a James Baldwin Fellow of United States Artists, and a Mayor’s Arts Award for his sustained contributions to the City of Seattle.

Nancy Casciano is from Atlanta, Georgia. She studied at the School of American Ballet and PNB School, and she attended summer courses at PNB School, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Miami City Ballet, and Exploring Ballet with Suzanne Farrell. Ms. Casciano joined PNB as an apprentice in 2014 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2015.

The Cornish College of the Arts BFA Dance program is a professional dance education proven to prepare its students for the life of a dancer. The Dance Department’s holistic approach and broad professional training prepare its students for successful livelihoods as performers, choreographers, and teachers in the dance profession. Dance Department graduates and former students have performed with such companies as Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Trisha Brown Dance Company, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Mark Morris Dance Group, Isadora Duncan Dance Company, American Ballet Theatre, Ballet Hispanico, Zoe Scofield, and many, many more.

Christopher D’Ariano is from Yonkers, New York. He studied at Ballet Tech, the School of American Ballet, and PNB School, and he attended summer courses at Ballet Tech, Boston Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater, and PNB School. He was the recipient of the School of American Ballet Mae L. Wien Award for Outstanding Promise. Mr. D’Ariano joined PNB as an apprentice in 2017. He has also danced with Lunge Dance Collective, and he has choreographed for the Seattle International Dance Festival.

Cecilia Iliesiu is from New York City. She studied at the School of American Ballet and also with Francois Perron and Deborah Wingert at Studio Maestro. She attended summer courses at Boston Ballet School, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Chautauqua Institute, San Francisco Ballet School, and William Forsythe’s ART of workshop under Kathryn Bennetts. Ms. Iliesiu joined Carolina Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2009 and was promoted to soloist in 2014. She joined PNB as a member of the corps de ballet in 2015.

Amanda Morgan is from Tacoma, Washington. She studied at Dance Theatre Northwest and PNB School, and attended summer courses at Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Boston Ballet School, and the School of American Ballet. She participated in PNB School’s exchange with the Palucca University of Dance in Dresden, where she also performed with Dresden Semperoper Ballett. Ms. Morgan joined PNB as an apprentice in 2016 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2017.

Noelani Pantastico trained at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and attended summer courses at PNB School from 1994 to 1996. She joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 1997. She was promoted to corps de ballet in 1998, soloist in 2001, and principal in 2004. In 2008 she left PNB to join Les Ballets de Monte Carlo as a soloist and was promoted to first soloist in 2009. In 2015, Ms. Pantastico returned to PNB as a principal dancer. Picnic is her first choreographic effort.

Miles Pertl is from Seattle, Washington. He trained at PNB School, International Ballet Academy in Kirkland, Washington, and the John Cranko Schule in Stuttgart, and he attended summer courses at San Francisco Ballet School. Mr. Pertl joined Stuttgart Ballet as an apprentice in 2010 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2011. He next joined Het Nationale Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2012 before joining PNB as a member of the corps de ballet in 2015. In 2007, Mr. Pertl won the Youth America Grand Prix Semi-Finals in San Francisco and Youth America Grand Prix Finals in New York. He also has performed as a guest artist for gala performances in England, Italy, Moscow, and New York. He has choreographed works for PNB’s NEXT STEP and PNB School’s annual School Performance as well as the Noverre Society in Stuttgart, Danza Estate in Gubbio, Italy, and New Moves in Amsterdam.

The Purple Lemonade Collective is an artist group based out of Seattle. The Collective’s objective is to create art that educates, inspires, and entertains. The PLC includes choreographers, dancers, models, stylists, graphic designers, videographers, and music producers working together to make art accessible to our communities, whether across the street or around the globe. In addition to their individual creative projects, the PLC is also a fully functioning multimedia company, with the resources to fulfill most production needs. For more information, visit thepurplelemonade.com.

Stephen Rodgers Radcliffe (Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra Conductor & SYSO Music Director) has conducted orchestras on four continents, produced CD recordings of operatic, orchestral, and chamber music works, and has fostered the development of audiences through innovative educational and artistic programs. An Assistant Conductor of the Boston Lyric Opera, Radcliffe was Founder and Music Director of the New York Chamber Ensemble, performing for over a decade at Lincoln Center, Artistic Director of the Cape May Music Festival, and Principal Guest Conductor of the Hungarian Virtuosi. Mr. Radcliffe served as Director of Orchestral and Operatic Activities at the University of Massachusetts and Music Director of the Five College Opera Project. Mr. Radcliffe holds a degree in Music Education from the New England Conservatory and has led youth orchestra programs throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America, and Asia.

Bruno Roque was born in Lisbon and studied at the National Conservatory in Portugal. After graduation, he trained on scholarship at the Vaganova Ballet Academy in Saint Petersburg, Russia. In 1996 he was offered a contract with the National Ballet of Portugal. In 2001 he joined the Royal Ballet of Flanders in Antwerp, and from 2004 to 2016 was a first soloist with Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, where he has choreographed numerous pieces for the company. Since 2015 he has been responsible for a project, supported by Ballets de Monte Carlo and the Monegasque Ministry of Culture, involving 100+ children from Monaco schools acting, singing and dancing, giving them the opportunity to experience the demands of creating and performing. He most recently choreographed for Whim W’Him at their 2017 Choreographic Shindig.

Led by Conductor Stephen Radcliffe and comprised of talented young musicians in the Puget Sound region, the Seattle Youth Symphony Orchestra is SYSO’s flagship orchestra and one of the premier youth orchestras in the United States. Repertoire includes a variety of styles from early music to world premieres. The orchestra performs three regular season concerts in Benaroya Hall, home of the Seattle Symphony, and regularly partners with Pacific Northwest Ballet, Seattle Opera, regional Broadway musical theater organizations, local choruses, and internationally acclaimed guest artists and conductors.

Dylan Wald is from Minneapolis, Minnesota. He studied at Minnesota Dance Theatre & the Dance Institute, where he became an apprentice in 2012, and PNB School. He attended summer courses at PNB School, the School of American Ballet, The Juilliard School, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Mr. Wald joined PNB as an apprentice in 2014 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2015. In 2017, he participated in the Nederlands Dans Theater Summer Intensive.

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About Starla Smith

Starla Smith is a career journalist, writing features for such publications as The New Yorker, The San Francisco Chronicle, The Daily News, The Des Moines Register, Vibe and a prize-winning Gannett Newspaper. She helped launch Theater Week Magazine and eventually became its publisher. As a regular contributor to Playbill, her interviews and photos were featured in Playbill and Playbill-on-line. Smith was featured in the New York Times "Style" section for her "Word Portraits," specialized tributes, speeches, and presentation profiles. And she covered theater and features for City Search, Digital City, and the Tena Duberry WOW! Radio show. She previously served as astrology guru for Out Magazine, and she hastens to assure her readers that "Starla" is indeed her real name.

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