Katie Rose in Snow Queen pa de deux
When I attended the Joffrey Ballet Summer Intensive in New York in 2013, I had never had the opportunity to partner with anyone. It was my dream to be cast as Snow Queen in our Dance Company's (Inwood Dance Company) performance of the Nutcracker in December of 2013, and I was thrilled to be accepted into the Joffrey Ballet's Summer Intensive in New York. My competition was daunting because another dancer in my Company was truly amazing and had been double cast the year before as Snow Queen. The instructors at the Summer Intensive for the Joffrey Ballet were truly incredible in their talent, patience and passion for the art of dance. Each day, I stayed after class to work on my partnering technique and the Joffrey instructors were so kind, helpful, and encouraging! When IDC's guest artist, Israel Rodriguez (a former principal dancer with the Orlando Ballet), came to work with us in preparation for his guest performance in our Nutcracker, he told our Director that I was ready. Since I had been cast as the understudy for that role, I was thrilled and nervous at the same time when our Director gave me the opportunity to perform. When I was Clara several years ago, my Grandmother (who has now passed) was able to see me perform, and she cried when the Snow Queen ushered me into the Land of Sweets. I always promised her that I would be Snow Queen one day, and I know that she was there when I took the stage. None of that would have been possible without the instruction of the Joffrey Ballet at their Summer Intensive. I hope to return this year with the new confidence and my rekindled passion for dance. Thank you so much, Joffrey!