Ballerina Seo Hee Dazzles New York with Debut as Giselle

      June 03, 2011 08:54

      Seo Hee as Juliet in "Romeo and Juliet" in 2009 /Courtesy of American Ballet Theater

      Ballerina Seo Hee made a highly acclaimed debut in the title role of "Giselle" at the New York Metropolitan Opera House on Wednesday. The 25-year-old Korean won the role with the prestigious American Ballet Theater, one of the world's three leading ballet companies.

      With feather-light jumps and elegant movements, Seo captivated the audience as the peasant girl who falls in love with an engaged nobleman. Giselle dies after a betrayal in the first act, but returns as a ghost to protect her true love in the second act.

      After joining the company as an apprentice in 2005 and the corps de ballet in March 2006, Seo secured the part of Juliet in "Romeo and Juliet" in 2009, a rare case for a dancer in the corps de ballet. Less than a year after being appointed a soloist in August 2010, she won the much coveted role of Giselle.

      After Wednesday's performance, Seo said, "I think it wasn't bad, considering that it was the premiere." She added that she hopes to someday play the lead in her favorite ballet "Swan Lake," but most importantly, "I want to be able to master any character that I play, and fully communicate with the audience."

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