I’m going to write about Rosa Park and Maughan Jemesen separately. I think.
Anyway, Nutcracker 2016 was the last SDT show for:
1. Ines Furuhashi-Huber … we’ll miss seeing her onstage. Beautiful form, and a strong, fairly recent addition to SDT (2014?). Memories of her, especially, in Serenade (2015) and in Midnight Waltzes (2015), paired well with Shan del Vecchio. This was when Shan del Vecchio was starting to feature more in pairwork and in general.
2. Lisha Chin. My friend would ask, after watching the performances: Who’s that dancer? , for her tall, graceful form always stood out. She seriously left an impression in her final SDT performances — I don’t think we’ll forget Mrs Nightingale for a long time to come. The line-up for SDT is not going to be the same without her. (I’ve just watched Coppelia, and the backbone has changed so much! Not a bad thing, but it takes a little getting used to.)
3. Alison Carroll. Last, but never, ever least. Where do we begin? Part of the backbone of the major group dancers with so many dances, both contemporary and classical, under her belt. First saw her in a studio performance of the beautifully fragile, moving Absence of Story. The Fairy of Song in Sleeping Beauty; unforgettably, Winds of Zephyrus and Chant. Nimble, precise dancing. Because she was so good at both contemporary and classical dancing, one could always count on seeing Alison Carroll in so many pieces – Jabula (but of course!), Theme and Variations (a fiendishly complicated piece), Fearful Symmetries…the list goes on. And Cupid from Don Quixote, which involves – what, hopping endlessly on toes with ankles crossed, super-fast; a great cupid-bow leap offstage, boundless energy and charisma (you’re sharing the stage with Kitri-as-Dulcinea, after all).
Best wishes to them.