Thursday, October 19, 2017

A ballerina of our own performs in ‘The Nutcracker’

by Kimberly Bailey-Tureaud

A Chicago transplant, Danielle Dyson joined the Nevada Ballet Theatre a year ago.

The Nevada Ballet Theatre is celebrating its 40th year in Las Vegas. To the delight of cultural enthusiasts in the entertainment capital, the renowned dance company has given four decades of top-notch performances.

The troupe attracts top dancers from across the nation. One of them is Danielle Dyson, who came to Las Vegas a year ago after being accepted into the company. The Chicago transplant “auditioned all over the country and the Nevada Ballet Theatre was definitely a place I wanted to be,” says the 25-year-old. “The director, James Canfield, has an amazing reputation, and it is an honor to work with him. It was just one of my top choices.”

Dyson has studied ballet since the age of 3, attending classes at her mother’s urging. In the early years, she lost interest fairly quickly, and began trying her hand at athletics.

“I remember my mother allowing me to try something different, like sports, because I thought ballet was boring,” she recalls. “My father was so excited about my new interest in athletics, and I became a super athlete. I then went into gymnastics when I turned 14, but shortly (after) went back to ballet. I ended up quitting everything for ballet, and my father was upset. But now he loves it.”

She decided to pursue a professional ballet career after being accepted into the dance program at Indiana University. Now one of only two African-American adults in the dance company, Dyson’s experiences as a professional dancer have been positive.

“I think I am lucky that times have changed, and there are more athletic dancers and companies moving toward a more athletic direction,” she says. “Ballet is a different type of art form now. Today, you have to know contemporary ballet as well as classical ballet. There are so many different dance companies performing different types of ballet and ranges. The ballet body is not a stigma any longer.”

Although she did consider auditioning for the all-black Alvin Ailey troupe based in New York, Dyson ultimately opted to seek a more classical ballet company, a decision that was more in line with her formal training.

“I am so lucky to have extremely supportive parents, and I have never had any roadblocks placed before me because I am an African-American ballet dancer,” she says. “My parents believed in me, and pushed me to do what I wanted to do. I was so lucky to have them there every step of the way. They are my cheerleaders in the world, and they keep me motivated. I have not had any bouts with discrimination, and I guess I am just lucky not to have had any.”

Dyson (far left) has studied ballet since the age of three.

Since 1993, the Nevada Ballet Theatre has been behind an outreach program, Future Dance, that focuses on teaching the art of dance to students in at-risk communities. Those who fulfill the program requirements usually find themselves in prime position to receive scholarships to the Nevada Dance Academy.

To young women aspiring to follow in her professional footsteps, Dyson gives the following advice: “I think you definitely have to seek out role models. There are role models out there and there is nothing holding you back. It’s been done by those who came before us, and there is nothing to be afraid of.”

“The Nutcracker” will be performed Dec. 17-24 at the Paris Las Vegas Theatre. For more information on the Nevada Ballet Theatre, call 702-243-2623.

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Google Bookmarks
  • email
  • LinkedIn
  • MySpace
  • RSS
  • Twitter
  • Yahoo! Buzz

Comments

8 Responses to “A ballerina of our own performs in ‘The Nutcracker’”
  1. I cannot thank you adequately for the discussions on your web-site I know you placed a lot of time and energy into them and really hope you know how considerably I enjoy it I hope Im able to do exactly the same for another individual someday

    Report this comment

  2. Kole Amoruso says:

    Hey there Nice stuff please keep me posted when you post something like this

    Report this comment

  3. Through comments on blogs or weblogs, teachers can share their classroom experiences. Her articles held a reader’s interest.”

    Report this comment

  4. I enjoy what you guys tend to be up too. This kind of clever work and exposure! Keep up the superb works guys I’ve you guys to my own blogroll.

    Report this comment

  5. Wow that was strange. I just wrote an really long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again.
    Regardless, just wanted to say fantastic blog!

    Report this comment

  6. I am actually grateful to the owner of this site who
    has shared this impressive paragraph at here.

    Report this comment

Trackbacks

Check out what others are saying about this post...
  1. Get the facts…

    […]Hi there! I just would like to offer you a big thumbs up for the excellent information you have got here on this post. I am coming back to your blog for more soon.[…]…

    Report this comment



Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

Comment moderation is in use. Please do not submit your comment twice -- it will appear shortly.