Monday, March 21, 2016

YAGP Boston 2016 with Ellison Ballet

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Exciting update from YAGP Boston! 

This past weekend Ellison Ballet traveled to Boston to compete in Youth America Grand Prix. This is a very popular world wide ballet competition. You can be seen by directors of schools and companies from all over the world. It is also a great learning experience to help you further your training and career. In the final round in New York City you are seen by even more teachers and directors from schools and companies world wide. Some can receive company offers through finals week. This happens in April. Stay tuned for my blog about what to expect for the NYC YAGP Finals.

We left from Manhattan and drove to Boston in two vans. The girls went in one van and the boys went in another. Mr. Ellison drove the boys van. It took about 5 hours to drive there. We stopped in Connecticut to grab some food  and use the restroom. There was a beautiful sunset when we stopped. We also live streamed Sophie, a 16 year old dancer from Ellison Ballet, during the pit stop.

Ari, Claire, Gloria, me, and Ashlyn.

EB girls heading to Boston. 

For the past few months we have been rehearsing an ensemble piece. We performed Seguidilla from the ballet Don Quixote. In this piece we are in lines of three and dance with a boy and with fans. I will include the link to the youtube video we studied while learning. I absolutely LOVE this piece! I have so much fun when I rehearse and perform this piece. There is so much fire and energy that needs to be put into it. Also we have been working on really bending our upper body and creating a beautiful Spanish port de bra and upper body movement.

Ashlyn and Taylor

When we first started rehearsing this piece, I felt very stiff and not very much of us were bending as much as we could. Also, when we first started rehearsing, I was just coming back from my foot injury. I didn't wear character shoes yet and I was only doing upper body. This was, in a way, good for me because I really wanted to have a beautiful upper body. We also really focused on our lines, which honestly, were not too great in the beginning. We would do it line by line and watch each other to make sure we were in line. 
EB girls in Seguidilla.
We had our open stage at around 8:30 pm on Saturday. They let each piece have 60 seconds onstage to mark their piece. This flew by and felt like no time to do anything. We just tried to work on some spacing. We only did about 4 counts of each section. 
When we competed this piece we were one of the last groups to go.

We performed close to 10 pm at night!! We all thought the music was quiet on stage and wish it was louder. We also felt we started off with good energy but could have brought more in certain sections.  My friend and my mom filmed the piece on the computer. We all watched the video and it actually looked better than we thought. Are lines were not perfect, so we have to work on that! We talked with Mr. Ellison afterwards and he said that we performed well and danced beautifully. He said that the lines need to be perfect and in some parts we were a bit stiff. He also said the music wasn't that quiet in the audience but could definitely be louder.  

In the Junior category we had Elizabeth and Penelope compete. They were both amazing! Nailed their performances. Penelope placed second for classical and Elizabeth won the Youth America Grand Prix award!!! So happy for both of them!! 
Elizabeth(Left) and Penelope(Right) backstage at YAGP. See Elizabeth's performance video link below. 
In the senior category we had Brianna, Sophie, Marie, August, and Andrii competing. They all performed beautifully! Everyone had really solid performances. Brianna got top twelve, Sophie got first place, August got second place and Andrii got first.  
The younger girls working on Scarf Dance from La Bayadere during open stage.  

All of our ensemble pieces placed first!! The younger level at Ellison competed Scarf Dance from La Bayadere. The boys performed a contemporary piece and Gloria and Andrii performed Giselle Act II Pas De Deux.
Seguidilla cast after competing.

The theatre we competed at in Boston. The audience section was huge!

(L-R)Kyono, Claire, Ashlyn, me, Gloria, Taylor.
Ellison Ballet also won the Outstanding School award. I am SO HAPPY to be apart of such an amazing school. We are so lucky to have such dedicated and hard working teachers and students. I absolutely love training here and I am really looking forward to the NYC YAGP finals in April.

Gloria, Nicolas, and Juan with the plaques for our ensemble pieces! <3

Some EB students after competing.

During my time in Boston I happened to meet some girls who follow me on my social media accounts!!! This was so cool to me! They were all so sweet and I loved meeting and talking with them all.

Some girls I met at the hotel.

On Sunday my friend Taylor and I had to miss the awards ceremony and head to the airport to go home for spring break. We watched the live stream on my computer to see how it went. Some friends kept us updated with texts ad snapchats. I am so proud of everyone!!!! Love my Ellison Ballet Family.

Looking forward to a week off, but will be excited to get back to work next week and preparing for finals and Ellison Ballet Exams. I will blog about that soon!

I hope you enjoyed this update from YAGP 2016!

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Keep dancing,

xoxo Robbie

Elizabeth Beyer - Variation from Harlequinade
We couldn't help sharing this performance from Boston - Elizabeth Beyer is lovely in Harlequinade variation. #YAGP2016
Posted by Youth America Grand Prix on Saturday, March 19, 2016

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