Oakland Ballet Company is pleased to bring you: “Behind Graham Lustig’s ‘The Nutcracker’” as part of our “Behind Oakland Ballet” blog. Throughout December, we will be posting interviews with professional dancers, staff, volunteers, and superfans! Make sure to check out these fun, behind-the-scenes features and learn why Oakland Ballet Company is so loved by our community.
Emily Kerr is a Bay Area native and received her training at Pacific Ballet Academy and Boston Ballet School. She has appeared with Milissa Payne Project, Mark Foehringer Dance Project|SF, Los Angeles Ballet, and BalletMet Columbus. Emily has had the pleasure of performing works by Graham Lustig, Amy Seiwert, Milissa Payne Bradley, Gerard Charles, David Nixon, Tom Gold, Devon Carney, and George Balanchine. She is delighted to be appearing in her fourth season with Oakland Ballet Company. Read on to find out why Emily loves dancing for OBC.
I’ve danced professionally with Oakland Ballet for the past three years. This is my fourth Nutcracker season with OBC.
Every community deserves access to professional art of all kinds. OBC is important to Oakland not just due to the level of work it brings to the community through performances, but also through our Outreach Program that allows us to perform at Oakland elementary schools. Experiences like these instills an appreciation for art in children from a young age.
My favorite scene in the Nutcracker is the Snow Scene. Everything is beautiful and flowing: the music, the costumes, the choreography. For me, it’s the most magical part of the show because I feel transported.
How long have you been dancing?
My parents put me in ballet when I was about three years old and I just never stopped! I suppose I became more serious about it at about age nine.
What advice would you give young dancers?
Connect with the reason you started dancing, and the reason you have to continue to dance, every day. It can be easy to get bogged down in negativity when you’re exhausted or in pain, but we are so lucky to do what we love every day. Don’t wait to realize this until it’s gone.