Alexandra Meister and Nicolas Scheuer will Compete in Bulgaria July 15-30
Two Nashville Ballet company dancers, Alexandra Meister and Nicolas Scheuer, have been selected to compete in the 27th International Ballet Competition in Varna, Bulgaria. Meister and Scheuer will join more than 100 dancers from 30 countries July 15-30, 2016, marking the first time anyone from Nashville has been chosen to participate.
Founded in 1964, The Varna International Ballet Competition is the oldest, and arguably one the most prestigious, ballet competitions worldwide. Held every two years, dancers from all over the globe compete in a two-week, Olympic-style event for gold, silver and bronze medals in various categories.
“The Varna International Ballet Competition not only provides a platform for Nashville Ballet dancers to perform and gain notoriety on an international stage, but it offers a tremendous opportunity for growth,” Nashville Ballet Artistic Director & CEO Paul Vasterling said. “It’s a chance to learn through the preparation process, the other dancers and feedback from the judges. Alexandra and Nicolas will be able to take their Varna experience and channel that back into their performances next season.”
Meister and Scheuer will compete in three rounds of dance, including three classical pas de deux (duets) and two contemporary pieces. Classical pieces include the Sugar Plum pas de deux from Vasterling’s Nashville’s Nutcracker (which the couple first danced together in December 2015), the Black Swan pas de deux from Swan Lake and an excerpt from Le Corsaire. Vasterling and Nashville Ballet company dancer and budding choreographer Christopher Stuart will each create original pieces for the contemporary round.
The pair has been preparing for the competition since last year. Their coaching team includes Vasterling, School of Nashville Ballet Academy Principal Nicole Koenig, Nashville Ballet company dancer Jon Upleger, and former Houston Ballet principal dancer, ballet mistress and coach Dawn Scannell. Interested supporters can donate to Meister and Scheuer’s GoFundMe campaign to help offset travel, coaching, choreography and costuming expenses.
Meister joined NB2, Nashville Ballet's second company, in 2008. By 2010 she was promoted to apprentice, and a few months later to company dancer. She has performed Lilac Fairy in Sleeping Beauty, Dark Angel in George Balanchine's Serenade, Pas de Trois in Swan Lake and the Sugar Plum Fairy in Nashville's Nutcracker. Meister has danced featured roles in Vasterling's Carmina Burana, Cinderella, Macbeth and The Ben Folds Project as well as in contemporary works by Salvatore Aiello, Balanchine, Brian Enos, James Gregg, Graham Lustig, Gina Patterson, Sarah Slipper and Stuart.
Meister was trained by Ana Lobe of the Cleveland San Jose Ballet. She has also represented Nashville Ballet in the 2010 USA International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi, and the 2011 Boston International Ballet Competition.
Originally from Joinville, Brazil, Scheuer joined Nashville Ballet as an apprentice in 2012 and was promoted to company dancer in January 2013. He began his ballet studies at the Bolshoi Theatre School of Brazil, affiliated with the prestigious Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow, Russia. He continued his dance education at Boston Ballet School. After two years, he began his full-time performance career at the New English Ballet Theater in London. Scheuer brought his talent for classical ballet to the 2012 Youth America Grand Prix, the world’s largest student ballet scholarship competition.
Since joining Nashville Ballet, Scheuer has performed the title role in Nashville's Nutcracker, Benno in Swan Lake, John Darling in Vasterling's Peter Pan, the Waltz Man in Balanchine's Serenade and the title role in Afternoon of a Faun by Aiello.
About Nashville Ballet
Nashville Ballet is the largest professional ballet company in Tennessee. Nashville Ballet presents a varied repertoire of classical ballet and contemporary works by noted choreographers, including original works by Artistic Director & CEO Paul Vasterling. Nashville Ballet and the second company, NB2 (a pre-professional training company), provide more than 75,000 arts experiences to adults and children annually through season performances and its Outreach & Education programming. Curriculum-based outreach programs bring dance education to community centers, colleges, public libraries and public elementary, middle and high schools across the state. School of Nashville Ballet brings world-class dance instruction to students age 2 to 70.
Nashville Ballet receives public funding from Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission, Tennessee Arts Commission and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional private support provided by Ingram Charitable Trust, The Shubert Foundation, Bridgestone Americas Trust Fund, Caterpillar Financial, The HCA Foundation, The Memorial Foundation, Publix Super Market Charities, Dollar General, Nashville Predators Foundation, SunTrust Bank and hundreds of generous individuals who contribute to the Annual Fund.
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