Studio West Dance Theatre Presents Giselle

by Nora Kovacs for OLY ARTS

Studio West Dance Theatre presents ballet classic Giselle, an adventurous choice for the studio and an emotionally effervescent piece certain to leave audiences filled with joy and energy. From love and the supernatural to vengeance and forgiveness, the ballet spans a multitude of universal themes. Director Stephanie Wood-Ennett spoke to OLY ARTS about what to expect from the upcoming show.

OLY ARTS: How has your career in dance led up to your current role as director at Studio West?

Wood-Ennett: I started dancing as a little girl and trained at the Washington Academy of Performing Arts. I left home at 15 to do independent study, moved on to the San Francisco Ballet School, got my first job at Ballet Memphis, had a professional dance career for six years and then returned to Olympia. A few years later I opened Studio West and now here I am.

OLY ARTS: What inspired the choice of Giselle?

Wood-Ennett: Giselle is a ballet I have wanted to do for some time. Our previous ballets have been more mainstream, like Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland and Cinderella, so this is a riskier choice. Giselle is a beautiful classic that we wanted to share with the audience, as well as give our dancers the opportunity to perform such a historically significant piece.

OLY ARTS: How have the dancers prepared for this performance?

Wood-Ennett: The choreography is highly technical. The dancers must not only have proficient ballet technique, but the skill to convey the storyline through pantomime and acting. Joshua Grant will dance the role of Albrecht, Nathan Cook will be the infatuated Hilarion and Katharine Cowan has the lead role of Giselle. Katharine is an emerging ballerina who has trained at Studio West since she was nine years old and is about to embark upon a professional career in dance.

OLY ARTS: What can viewers expect from the show?

Wood-Ennett: Giselle is about a young peasant girl who is deceived in love by the aristocrat Albrecht, disguised as a commoner. Audiences will be moved by the ethereal beauty of this ballet as love, betrayal and forgiveness play out with stunning simplicity.

What: Giselle

Where: Kenneth J Minnaert Center for the Arts,
South Puget Sound Community College,
2011 Mottman Rd. SW, Olympia

When: 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday, April 29

How much: $23-$39

Learn more: 360-956-9378 | The Washington Center

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