“When putting together our programs, I like to give the dancers multiple styles to work on. I feel this gives them a chance to step outside their comfort zone and discover something new,” Kansas City Youth Ballet Director Kimberly Cowen said. “In many cases the dancers find they really excel at some of these other styles. This builds their confidence and nurtures their artistic side.”
On March 9-11, Kansas City Youth Ballet performed their Spring Show titled Raymonda. The program opened with Oblivion’s Ink, created by David Justin, dance professor from UMKC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance. Followed by Plunk, the work by Paula Weber, the chair of dance from UMKC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance. Former Kansas City Ballet company member Logan Pachciarz’s piece, An Agreeable Harmony and Kansas City Ballet School Faculty member Liz Trevino’s Boiling Point were next. Then Alexander Glazunov’s classic, Raymonda, capped off the evening.
In all, there were 31 KCYB members this season, six of them boys. Nine members will graduate this year.
“These dancers never cease to amaze me,” Cowen said. “We have eight weeks to put our show together and the majority of the works on the program are rehearsed once a week. That gives them 16 hours to prepare for each piece, the equivalent to two days of work for a professional dancer. Their dedication and determination is an absolute joy to be around.”