Four of N.C. Dance Theatre’s leading members are saying goodbye to the company’s audiences this weekend.
The four – Alessandra Ball, Rebecca Carmazzi, David Ingram and Justin VanWeest – have a combined 30 years’ experience with NCDT. Their decisions to move on from the company show how dancers feel the pull of families and relationships. After all, they may play fairy-tale characters onstage, but they’re still human.
They’re bowing out this weekend in NCDT’s last performances of the season. The program combines the premiere of “Dangerous Liaisons” by Sasha Janes – a former NCDT dancer, now its rehearsal director – and a revival of “Artifice” by the company’s resident choreographer, Dwight Rhoden.
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Alessandra Ball: After the career milestone of starring in “Sleeping Beauty” in March, Ball has a personal milestone. She’s s getting married and joining her new husband in the Northeast. This is her eighth season with NCDT. “I came here when I was 19,” Ball said in a statement, “so I grew up here. I learned everything I know about being a professional dancer here.”
Rebecca Carmazzi: Her decision can be summed up three words: Jaidyn, Taurin and Rykar. Those are her and Janes’ three children. “I have been a professional dancer for 20 years, and now I am ready to concentrate on my kids and become the best mom I can be,” Carmazzi said in a statement. “Being a professional dancer is very demanding physically and you have to be in amazing shape to do it. ... That’s really hard with 3 kids.” This weekend, closing her 10th season with NCDT, she plays the scheming Marquise de Merteuil in “Dangerous Liaisons.”
David Ingram: He’s moving to Indiana to rejoin his wife, Alexis, who last year took a teaching post with the Fort Wayne Ballet. Ingram will teach there, too, but he’ll visit Charlotte next season to choreograph a work in NCDT’s annual Innovative Works program. He said the highlight of his five season with NCDT was working with NCDT’s Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux and Patricia McBride in Balanchine’s “Apollo.” In “Liaisons,” he’ll play the other main schemer, Valmont.
Justin VanWeest: He’s moving to San Francisco to be with his girlfriend, former NCDT dancer Kara Wilkes. A native of Mebane, he’s one of several NCDT dancers raised in the Carolinas. “This company and city have been my home and ... will always be close to my heart,” VanWeest said. In Rhoden’s phantasmagorical “Artifice,” he’s playing Ace Heart Break.