The Men of the Sacramento Ballet

By Ashley Robinson

The Sacramento Ballet gave me a chance to check out their studio performance, “Inside the Director’s Studio: The Men of the Sacramento Ballet.” 

Now, I don’t know about you, but when I think of ballet, the male counterparts aren’t the first to come to mind. As the famous choreographer George Balanchine said, “Ballet is woman,” we all know that behind every strong woman is a man (as President Gerald Ford once said, or something like that). Ballerinas cannot rise to glorious heights, dive as graceful swans and carry the stars on their arms without the male dancer carrying her there.

Romeo and Juliet is absolutely no exception. The “Men of the Sacramento Ballet” studio performance demonstrated the strength and virtuosity of the male dancers through their scenes in the famous Shakespeare/Prokofiev combination pack.

The audience wrapped around the perimeter of the black studio floor gasped, sobbed and cheered as the Romeos, Mercutios, Parises, Tybalts and ensemble members did what men do best – show off. Real swords for the fighting? Check. Throwing a girl inches from suffering a face plant on the floor? Check. Strutting around the studio with less body fat than I can ever imagine not having? Check.

When the men jumped, it was if a puppet-master held their strings tighter, keeping them aloft, floating and then finally landed with a slight thud. These are dudes, not tiny effeminate girly-men, and they have major athleticism – not to say that women are not athletic. I think the widespread perception of ballerinas highly regard their physical prowess; however the male dancers are not often included in this ideal.

Not only was I completely impressed by the stunning manliness of it all, I was inspired to support the ever evolving organization. On the near brink of bankruptcy a couple of years ago, the River City’s ballet crew has taken bold steps in getting the general population excited about ballet. For example, the Beer and Ballet series opened the studio on Second Saturdays with a serving of ale and a sample of pure art.

To publicize its upcoming Romeo and Juliet – in conjunction with other events, such as “Men of Ballet” — the Sacramento Ballet is hosting “Red HOT ITALIAN Night in Verona Experience Rosso Passione” (sponsored by Hot Italian) with performances in the studios. (February 1, 2 or 3.) If you get your tickets now, you will receive a special guest pass to the in-studio preview of Romeo and Juliet. And seriously, from having experienced an in-studio performance, it is so exciting to be that close to the performers. (http://www.sacballet.org/index.php/upcoming_events)

If you are in a relationship and want to get your hearts pumping early, check out Romeo and Juliet February 10th through the 13th. If you aren’t in a relationship, don’t go to the ballet to meet guys. But it doesn’t hurt to watch a few hot ones string you along from up on the stage.

I will be sure to keep supporting the Sacramento Ballet company as these artists continue to create innovative events that take the audience to glorious heights, give us wings to fly and carry the stars to our seats.

(Oh, and if you do want to meet the dancers, apparently they do quite a bit of hanging out at Hamburger Patties.)

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2 Comments

  1. Chantel Elder says

    Those dancer bodies eat Hamburgers?! Man! I am envious!

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