Memories of Jackson
It will be a full-circle moment for Ballet Manila artistic director Lisa Macuja-Elizalde when she arrives in Jackson, Mississippi this week for the 11th USA International Ballet Competition.
Twenty-eight years ago, she was there as a competitor in the fourth edition of the event that draws the best of the best among ballet dancers from across the globe.
Today, she returns as a mentor to Ballet Manila company artists Nicole Barroso and Joshua Enciso – the first Filipino contenders to be chosen to participate in the prestigious competition’s junior division – and who are being coached by BM co-artistic director Osias Barroso.
Lisa is also serving as coach to Katherine Barkman who will perform with non-competing partner Joseph Phillips in the senior division. Both are resident guest artists for BM’s next season, with Katherine just completing a three-year stint as a principal ballerina of the company.
As the team gears up for the competition, which will run from June 10 to 23, the Ballet Manila Archives mines its collection for memorabilia and photographs documenting Lisa’s unforgettable Jackson experience. Here’s a selection: