Did you know that Santa Fe has a ballet company? Yes, we share, but what a great dance partner we have in Aspen, CO! For seventeen years, Aspen Santa Fe Ballet has made Santa Fe its second home, and local and visiting dance aficionados are grateful.

The company returns to the City Different for two performances on March 29 and March 30, both at 7:30pm at the Lensic. The innovative troupe brings a program of three works, Jiri Kylián’s poignant 1974 piece, Return to a Strange Land, Alejandro Cerrudo’s striking new ballet, Last, and Trey McIntyre’s seductive Like a Samba,  all showcasing the talent and skill of ASFB dancers.

The son of a child-dancer, Jiri Kylián‘s first love was circus, which led to a training regimen in acrobatics. After his acrobatic academy folded, ballet took him to the Prague Conservatory. His studies with the free-spirited choreographer John Cranko at the prestigious Stuttgart Ballet and subsequent work with Carel Birnie of NDT, along with a panoply of world-wide awards, helped form the unique vision that Santa Fe dance-lovers will enjoy.

Return to a Strange Land by Jiri Kylián, photo courtesy ASFB, copyright Rosalie O'Connor

Return to a Strange Land, photo courtesy ASFB, copyright Rosalie O’Connor

A native of Madrid, Alejandro Cerrudo was educated at the Real Conservatorio Professional de Danza de Madrid. Named a Choreographic Fellow of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, he became the company’s first Resident Choreographer in 2009. Mr. Cerrudo danced in December 2012 at Jacob’s Pillow, partnering the sublime Wendy Whelan. The piece being performed in Santa Fe, Last, with music by Henryk Gorecki, was premiered at the Joyce Theater in October 2012.

Last by Alejandro Cerrudo, photo courtesy of ASFB, copyright Rosalie O'Connor

Last by Alejandro Cerrudo, photo courtesy of ASFB, copyright Rosalie O’Connor

Trained at North Carolina School of the Arts and Houston Ballet Academy, American dancer/choreographer Trey McIntyre, founded his dance company, the Trey McIntyre Project, in 2005. McIntyre is known for “brainy” ballet melded with visceral physicality, and anything that is characterized as being “like a samba” is sure to be a hit in rhythmic Santa Fe!

Like a Samba by Trey McIntyre, photo courtesy of ASFB, copyright Rosalie O'Connor

Like a Samba by Trey McIntyre, photo courtesy of ASFB, copyright Rosalie O’Connor

Not content with just performing, ASFB offers a curriculum of ballet, jazz and modern dance in both Aspen and Santa Fe. The ASFB School provides quality training for pre-professional students, as well as recreational dancers, all in a supportive environment designed to enhance confidence and accomplishment while nurturing artistic expression and technical skill. Students perform in an annual spring recital, and alongside ASFB’s professional dancers in The Nutcracker.  ASFB deserves great credit for awarding over $30,000 in needs-based scholarships every year, helping to ensure a vibrant future for dance arts in America.

Santa Fe loves to see music and movement together, and if you do too, then head for the Lensic!