In the fall of 2016, Kansas City Ballet invited Parrish Maynard to join the ranks of Ballet Master for the company. We spent a few minutes with Mr. Maynard to see how the transition has gone.
He has really enjoyed getting to know KC. He spoke of the energy of the city, the friendliness of its residents and the many outstanding arts amenities, and of course, about the BBQ!
Mr. Maynard was visiting Kansas City Ballet School over the summer as a guest teacher for the Summer Intensive program. He had been working with and choreographing for students since his dance career was cut short by an injury. “I retired after I broke my foot dancing,” he said. “I was devastated. My artistic director, Helgi Tomasson, asked me to try teaching in the San Francisco Ballet School. He said he wanted me to choreograph. In my time there I choreographed 23 ballets. It opened up my eyes to choreography.”
And, after 12 years, Mr. Maynard felt it was time to move onto something else.
“I was excited for the opportunity to work with professional dancers,” he said. “I’m so amazed by how much work they do for each show. Often they learn so many different roles and their days are difficult and their stamina is strong. Devon is great. He’s such a positive energy and so generous!”
He believes the company has very good energy and a positive atmosphere every day—which makes the job easier. He’s looking forward to The Sleeping Beauty. “I performed these roles at American Ballet Theatre, so this a bit of the passing of the torch. I’m also very excited about Balanchine’s Theme and Variations coming up this spring. I’ve done it my whole career. I’m happy to be passing my knowledge and experience on,” Maynard says.
Mr. Maynard’s Motto: Never stop working or learning.