CHS graduate featured in Indy Ballet show

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Jessica Miller’s homecoming has been special.

The 2009 Carmel High School graduate returned from New York from her career as a freelance artist to become part of Indianapolis Ballet.

Indianapolis Ballet will present “An Evening with Balanchine” at The Toby at Newfields Sept. 27 to 29.

The three pieces are “Allegro Brillante,” “Sonatine” and “Who Cares?” by legendary ballet choreographer George Balanchine.

“His work is done throughout the world by all the leading ballet companies,” Miller said. “You have to apply to receive these ballets. They are really well protected. You have to have the dancers to do it and they have to approve you. It’s a real privilege for us.”

The Indianapolis resident is part of five couples in “Allegro Brillante.”

“It’s lots of fast footwork,” Miller said.

Miller has two different parts she is learning for “Who Cares?”

“It’s a huge ballet and it’s all Gershwin music,” Miller said. “It’s so much fun and lots of really interesting rhythms.”

Miller has been with Indianapolis Ballet since it began 18 months ago.

“It’s been so great coming back,” Miller said. “It’s been a little nerve-racking being part of something so new, but it’s really exciting because we get to make it what we want it to be. We’re not trying to fill anyone else’s shoes or fill a mold. We can create our mold. It’s awesome.”

Miller said Indianapolis Ballet is different from other companies she has worked with because it’s a small ballet company, headed by artistic director Victoria Lyras.

“It feels more like a family,” Miller said. “Victoria really cares about her dancers and our mental and physical health. She wants us to learn as much as possible. We don’t feel just like tools.”

Miller, who graduated from State University of New York’s Purchase College, trained with Ballet International in Indianapolis.

“I was here when it folded,” Miller said. “There has been no classical ballet company. To see the Indianapolis area rise up and support a company is really cool and inspiring.”

The performances are at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 27-28 and 3 p.m. Sept. 29. For more, visit indyballet.org.


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