Out for drinks with some friends the other night, we decided to play the infamous “someone suggests a word and then you have to draw it on a napkin with your eyes closed” game.  I was given ballerina and after two hearty glasses of malbec, those napkin swiggles up there^ were all I could muster.  I laughed loudly enough for our waitress to shoot me an(other) annoyed look and the game moved on.  Little did I know, my artist boyfriend snuck the crumpled concoction into his pocket for safe keeping.  Apparently he saw more of a masterpiece than I did, because weeks later he pulled it out to show me, eyes beaming with pride that his girlfriend had produced something so transcendent.

Okay, so maybe transcendent is a taaad bit of an overstatement, but Kevin’s excitement over my blind drawing reminded me that sometimes it takes an outsider’s perspective to recognize beauty.  Some things are a big old mess up close, but when you take a step back and look with a fresh eye, a hidden brilliance opens up to perception.

In a way that’s how working on a Plotnikov ballet can feel; At first the complicated movements and intertwining lifts can feel overwhelming and messy, but when you get onstage and the space opens up, the big picture just shines through.  I can’t wait to get this show to the theater in 12 short days!  If you are in the Rhode Island area, grab your tickets here.

sketchy looking

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Sketches of me during company class, by Jan Gendron.

I have fallen in love with Providence for a long list of reasons.  The world renowned restaurants, historic buildings, and gloriously suburban east side all make that list of course, but my absolute favorite thing about this lively little city is its incredibly expansive artistic culture.  I mean, I can’t be the only one who finds it impressive that such a teeny capital city can breed enough artistic freedom to become one of the most exciting creative hubs in the country.  With small cinemas like the Avon and Cable Car showcasing the latest indie movies, the students of RISD continuing to amaze the community with their impossible talent, and Etsy and DIY-inspired stores like Queen of Hearts and Modern Love thriving on Westminster, it’s undeniable that Providence’s fondu pot of artistic imagination and skill is constantly thickening.  This is made even more obvious at FBP by the presence of such local artists as photographer Cemal Ekin and Jan Gendron, who has been sketching dancers during company class, perched with his easel like a quiet, pastel-wielding little bird at the edge of the studio, since I can remember.  He recently posted the above photos of his sketches of me onto Facebook, so I thought I’d share them with you all today, along with a little love for Providence.  To see more of Jan’s work, grab some tickets to the final performance of Up Close On Hope this weekend, where you can enjoy a gallery of both Jan and Cemal’s art while you sip wine and munch on hors d’oeuvres during intermission.  How’s that for a culture-packed evening?!