Lucas Segovia stars in Yellowstone Ballet Co.’s 32nd annual production of Tchaikovsky’s holiday classic The Nutcracker on Sunday, December 10th. He will perform the roles of the Nutcracker Prince and the Cavalier. Performances will be held at 1pm and 4:30pm at the Willson Auditorium in Bozeman.
Originally from Buenos Aires, Segovia joined Ballet Argentina as a soloist under Julio Bocca’s direction. He was promoted to Principal Dancer shortly after and was the only dancer performing a solo piece in Bocca’s farewell performance for over 300,000 people and broadcasted on national TV.
As for knowing when he wanted to dance, Segovia said, “It caught me by surprise. It was a matter of luck. I didn’t start dancing until I was 16 after a female friend (who was a jazz dancer) convinced me to watch some dancing.” Watching the dancing, Segovia realized something. “It wasn’t a girly thing. There were a lot of guys taking classes, and the teacher was a man. I thought, ‘Why not? I’ll give it a try.’ In countries where cultures are not so stimulated it’s hard to say, ‘I want to be a dancer’ and make a living doing it. But I was able to do it.”
When asked what dance means to him, Segovia said, “Passion. The reason that I’m in this country and far away from my family is passion. It’s a way for me to express myself; it’s the best way to say what I want to say.” This passion has taken Segovia to major theaters in the United States, Spain, France, Italy, Greece, Russia and Cuba, among other places.
Segovia has been a part of The Washington Ballet and of Morphoses/The Wheeldon Company, directed by Christopher Wheeldon. He has also danced with The Joffrey Ballet for six seasons, performing in virtually the entire repertoire of the company as a soloist or principal dancer. Lucas has danced works by choreographers like Balanchine, Robbins, Twyla Tharp, Mark Morris, Christopher Wheeldon, Wayne McGregor, Alexei Ratmansky, William Forstyhe and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, among many others.
Throughout his career Segovia has danced in more than 400 cities around the globe, performing in some of the most important venues for dance in the world and has been awarded with the Premio Clarin, the most prestigious recognition for the Arts in Argentina.
Joining Segovia is Bozeman native Molly Groeschl. She trained with Main Street Dance Theater under the direction of Dana Sorg. Molly went on to train at Pacific Northwest Ballet, American Ballet Theater NYC, Orlando Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre and Ballet West. She has performed professionally with Ballet Tucson, Ballet West, Milwaukee Ballet, Colorado Ballet and Madison Ballet. She holds a BFA in Ballet Performance from the University of Utah.
Enhancing the production will be members of the School of Classical Ballet Company, Billings, Bridger View Ballet Center and Circus Center of Bozeman/406CIRQUE.
Encouraging families to attend, every adult ticket purchase qualifies for a free child’s ticket. Children can also attend as a Nutcracker character and compete for one of three gift certificates from the Rocky Mountain Toy Company. The costume contest will occur during intermission and every participant will receive a small gift.
YBC is under the artistic direction of founder Kathleen Rakela, a recipient of the Montana Arts Council Fellowship for the Performing Arts. The innovative company has been featuring local, national, and international dance talent in the Park, Sweet Grass, and Gallatin counties since 1990. Rakela also runs the Yellowstone Ballet Academy. Her students have received scholarships to world-class ballet training centers and have danced professionally around the world.
Reserved tickets for YBC’s The Nutcracker are available at www.yellowstoneballet.info or with cash or check at the door. Advance purchase is advised as last year’s shows sold out. For additional inquires, contact event organizers at YellowstoneBalletCo@gmail.com, (406) 222-0430 or by texting (406) 219-6915. •