Announcements about new artistic directors are always exciting. But Sacramento Ballet tapping Amy Seiwert to head the company just makes us all warm and fuzzy inside.
Why? Three reasons:
1. This is a woman with serious talent who deserves the opportunity to challenge herself with a bigger company. She's led her own project-based troupe, Imagery, in San Francisco since 1999, but now she'll be working with 28 dancers and a $2.76 million budget. We've been following her work since we named her a "25 to Watch" in 2005, and love her quirky, angular phrases and her compelling collaborations with everyone from spoken word performers to software artists.
2. Honestly, we also just love that another strong, talented woman is taking the helm of a ballet company.
Seiwert at Milwaukee Ballet. Photo by Petr Zahradnicek
3. A former Sacramento Ballet dancer herself, Seiwert feels like a perfect fit for this position. Earlier this year when Sacramento Ballet's board didn't to renew the contracts of longtime artistic directors Ron Cunningham and Carinne Binda, there were petitions and controversy. The pair, who've led the company for 30 years, publicly told the Sacramento Bee that they were "not at all ready" to step down. So the choice of Seiwert, who performed under Cunningham and Binda for eight years, feels like the happiest resolution you can get in this situation. She's both an in-house talent and someone who can bring a broader perspective from her experience creating ballets on companies across the country.
Rehearsing with Smuin Ballet. Photo courtesy Seiwert
Her post officially starts with the 2018–19 season. In the meantime, we can't wait to see the New York City premiere of her first full-length ballet later this month at The Joyce Theater's Ballet Festival—especially since her cast includes two Sacramento Ballet dancers.