The elegance of ballet and emotion of modern dance met at the Mission City Center for Performing Arts on June 8 for the Santa Clara Ballet’s Spring Dance Medley.
With performances by students of the Santa Clara Ballet School and members of the Santa Clara Ballet Company, as well as contributed works by Dance Attack Studios in Los Gatos and San Francisco’s Copious Dance Theater, the 12 pieces gave guests a glimpse into the world of dance.
The show began with three performances by the school’s younger students, two of which were choreographed by Jyvonne Montosa, and the third by Artistic Director Josefa Villanueva-Reyes.
The third piece, a solo by Tara Leach, “Sakura (Cherry Blossom),” was the first of three pieces choreographed by Brazilian native and Dance Theatre of San Francisco choreographer and dancer Marcos Vedoveto. Leach’s movement combined with Franz Schubert’s Ave Maria sung beautifully by SCB’s publicity officer, Molly Barber, was the perfect transition from the younger performers to the performances by the more experienced dancers.
A solo performed by Ailen Videla-Ortiz followed. Six SCB performers then took the stage for an Asian-inspired routine, “The Stars’ (Mga Bituin) from Alamat, an original Philippine Ballet,” which was choreographed by Villanueva-Reyes’ late husband, Benjamin Reyes.
Copious’ single contribution closed out the first act, with five dancers using a hanging light as the centerpiece of their performance. The company, which performed in last year’s show and stood out as a highlight, continued to entrance the audience with choreography by Artistic Director Kat Roman.
The second act opened with “This Bitter Earth,” a short performance by Dance Attack, and continued with a traditional pointe ballet piece performed by SCB’s Dasha Maximovich and Mikhail Guz.
Vedoveto’s two additional pieces were then danced back-to-back, with the choreographer taking the stage in “The Kiss,” a passionate love story. His second piece, “Different…yet Special,” was a whimsical addition. The dance, which featured clowns and balloons, was light-hearted and had the audience chuckling throughout.
The show closed with a six-part finale, choreographed by Reyes, danced to excerpts from Dmitri Shostakovich’s Ballet Suites No. 1 and 3.
Now in its 40th year, the Santa Clara Ballet Company’s spring show gives students the opportunity to showcase their skills in preparation for the ballet’s annual performance of The Nutcracker, which will be performed Saturday and Sunday, December 13 and 14 at the Santa Clara Convention Center Theater. Tickets go in sale in October. Open auditions are scheduled to take place on Sunday, September 7. Visit www.santaclaraballet.com/nutracker for additional information.