Longtime company member Amy Wood will retire at the end of 2019, and will join The Sarasota Ballet as Finance / Office Manager with the Company’s administrative team
Sarasota, FL (December 12, 2019) – The Sarasota Ballet announces today that Principal Dancer Amy Wood will be retiring from the stage after the December 2019 performances of John Ringling’s Circus Nutcracker, where Wood will give her final performance in the role of Mable Ringling. She will then join The Sarasota Ballet’s administrative team as Finance / Office Manager, a position she filled throughout the summer and part-time since the beginning of the Season.
“We are all very sad to see Amy retire from the stage,” says Iain Webb, Director of The Sarasota Ballet. “Amy was in the first audition I held for my first Season with the Company, and ever since then has been a constant and valued member of The Sarasota Ballet. It will be impossible to forget her remarkable performances throughout the years with us, especially in such iconic roles as Sacred Love in Ashton’s Illuminations and the final movement of Wheeldon’s There Where She Loved. Making the decision to retire as a dancer is never an easy one; I know personally how hard it can be to take that final curtain call. However, I also know that we are all incredibly excited to have her join us on the third floor full-time as a member of the administration team.”
Joseph Volpe, Executive Director of The Sarasota Ballet, adds, “From the moment Amy started working with the administrative team this summer she has proven to be a remarkably bright and hardworking staff member with a keen eye for detail. As we look to continue to build The Sarasota Ballet and strengthen our administrative foundation, we need to ensure that we hire the best people who are not only right for the job, but also fit with the organization itself. I know that Amy will continue to prove to be a valuable member of our organization.”
Amy joined The Sarasota Ballet in 2007, having auditioned in the summer at the same New York audition that saw other future Principal Dancers join the Company (Ricardo Rhodes, Victoria Hulland, and Danielle Brown). Wood had previously performed with Louisville Ballet and Nashville Ballet, and graduated cum laude and with high departmental honors from the esteemed Butler University with a BFA in Dance Performance.
“I feel very fortunate in my experience with The Sarasota Ballet the past 13 years,” explains Wood. “Looking back, it is amazing to think about the numerous ballets that I've had the opportunity to perform, and of course the wonderful choreographers, repetiteurs, and teachers that I've had the honor to work with. I am so grateful to Iain, Margaret, and Joseph for their guidance on stage and off and I'm excited to start this new journey with the Company. The arts have always been important to me, and I feel very lucky to have the opportunity to support them in a new way.”
Over the past 13 Seasons, Amy has awed audiences with leading roles in ballets such as Christopher Wheeldon’s There Where She Loved; Sir Frederick Ashton’s Illuminations and Monotones II; George Balanchine’s Emeralds and Prodigal Son; David Bintley’s ‘Still Life’ at the Penguin Café; Michel Fokine’s Les Sylphides; and Sir Peter Wright’s Giselle, to name but a few. During The Sarasota Ballet’s Ashton Festival, Robert Greskovic wrote for The Wall Street Journal that “Amy Wood, especially, stood out with shimmering dancing.”
“Amy has always been a delight to work with in the studio; her dedication, artistry and technique have stood out in every role she has undertaken,” says Margaret Barbieri, Assistant Director of The Sarasota Ballet. “I know that, much like us, audiences will sincerely miss her presence on stage. I am so pleased to have been able to work with her on so many wonderful ballets, especially last Season when Iain brought Sir Peter Wright’s Giselle back and Amy was able to beautifully perform the role of Myrtha, Queen of the Wilis, once more.”
Audiences can say goodbye to Amy Wood, as she gives her final performances of Mable Ringling in John Ringling’s Circus Nutcracker – Friday, 20 December 2019 at 7:30 and Saturday, 21 December 2019 at 7:30, both at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.
Individual tickets for John Ringling’s Circus Nutcracker, starting at $30, are on sale now at www.SarasotaBallet.org or by calling 941.359.0099.
About The Sarasota Ballet
Since 1990, the mission of The Sarasota Ballet has been enriching lives, captivating emotions, and strengthening the community through the art of dance. Under the leadership of Director Iain Webb, Executive Director Joseph Volpe, and Assistant Director Margaret Barbieri, The Sarasota Ballet has received national and international recognition for its diverse repertoire of rarely performed ballets, as well as the integrity and artistry of its performances. The Company’s expanded repertoire includes works by world-renowned choreographers such as Sir Frederick Ashton, George Balanchine, Sir Matthew Bourne, Dame Ninette de Valois, Michel Fokine, Sir Kenneth MacMillan, Rudolf Nureyev, Jerome Robbins, Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp, Antony Tudor, and Christopher Wheeldon. During Webb’s tenure, The Sarasota Ballet has been invited to perform twice at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. and twice at the Fall for Dance Festival at New York City Center, as well as week-long residencies at the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival and the Joyce Theater in New York. In May 2017 The Sarasota Ballet performed at the inaugural National Choreographic Festival in Salt Lake City and in August of 2018 returned to the Joyce Theater for another sold out week-long residency.