Supporting Smuin Ballet: An Interview with the Chens

The holiday season is in full swing, and Saturday evening’s show of The Christmas Ballet at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts was a night to remember! This performance featured a walk-on appearance from Patti Chen, a member of the Golden State Warriors’ Jr. Jam Squad. At the end of our show, Patti [...]

Shannon Hurlburt Returns for The Christmas Ballet

Shannon Hurlburt in "Bells of Dublin." Tom Hauck, 2007. Former Company member Shannon Hurlburt is returning to the stage for select performances of The Christmas Ballet! Shannon will reprise his signature tap-dancing role in “Bells of Dublin.” “Hurlburt’s tap dance solo to The Chieftains’ ‘Bells of Dublin,’… almost stopped this show Friday, and [...]

Setting the Stage – Behind the Scenes of The Christmas Ballet

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at Smuin Ballet! Following a fantastic opening in Walnut Creek, we were curious about the many details behind the scenes that make The Christmas Ballet magical. We sat down with Production Director and Stage Manager Kathryn T. Graham (KT) to learn more about what goes into this [...]

Restaging The Christmas Ballet: Q&A with Amy London

How are The Christmas Ballet pieces restaged every year? We sat down with Ballet Master Amy London to learn more about what goes into recreating this complex show each year with a new cast. Q: How do the new company members learn the whole show in just a few weeks? Amy London: Learning The Christmas [...]

Halloween Special: Smuin Costumes through the Years

What’s your favorite Halloween costume? Smuin Ballet has a long history of crazy costumes over 20 years of performances. Check out these photos--plus some stories from our Company Manager JoEllen Arntz--in the captions below! Michael Smuin’s The Christmas Ballet, 2004, Vanessa Thiessen Originally performed by Artistic Director Celia Fushille in the first Christmas [...]

An Interview with Choreographer Helen Pickett

“I’m making a premiere for California━I’m from California━and the drought is killing me.” Choreographer Helen Pickett joined Smuin Ballet in the San Francisco studio last week to create a world premiere on the dancers titled Oasis. A nearly 30-minute work in four parts, Oasis explores the concept of water in its many incarnations and implications. [...]

“Smuin Ballet is back in action!”

Smuin Ballet’s Dance Series One opened at the Lesher Center in Walnut Creek this past weekend. Featuring the world premiere of Choreographer-In-Residence Amy Seiwert’s Broken Open, the return of Michael Smuin’s Bouquet and Ma Cong’s French Twist, and Company member Ben Needham-Wood’s Maslow, the program was packed with a variety of offerings. Reviewer Allan Ulrich [...]

Maslow Embodies Smuin’s Fearless Spirit and Originality

Smuin Ballet is known for offering a break from tradition—a new style, a new angle, a new perspective through which to view the art of dance. Following the inspiration of founder Michael Smuin, the company investigates alternate styles, as well as rising voices in the world of dance. In advancing Michael’s fearless spirit and originality, [...]

Smuin Ballet Welcomes Back Choreographer Ma Cong

After a five year hiatus, we are delighted to welcome back Choreographer Ma Cong to showcase his piece French Twist for Dance Series One this fall. The dancers have enjoyed working with Ma in the studio, where he continues to amaze and inspire us all with his unique dance language. Only three dancers who performed [...]

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