Sure, ballet is inspiring to watch, with its lithe, limber performers telling stories using only their bodies, but do you know how much athletic strength it takes to pull off those jumps, twirls and grand jetés?
The Houston Ballet company features 59 stellar dancers whose athleticism is as astonishing to watch as their artistry during performances. During a typical day in the studio, a dancer can jump up to four feet in the air, and male dancers can lift up to 1.5 tons while performing with a partner. Even more impressive: The amount of energy needed for a principal role in ballet is equivalent to running more than 15 miles! One such artist/athlete is CHUN WAI CHAN, pictured here, who was recently promoted to Principal dancer at Houston Ballet. His well-deserved promotion concluded Houston Ballet’s performances at the Smart Financial Centre during the company’s Hometown Tour of Stanton Welch’s The Nutcracker, presented by Houston Methodist. Chan was born in Guang-Dong, China, and received his professional dance training at Guangzhou Art School and Houston Ballet Academy. He joined the Houston Ballet in 2012 as part of the corps de ballet.
Catch the Ballet next at their performance of “Rock, Roll & Tutus” from March 1–4 at the George R. Brown Convention Center’s Resilience Theatre. For more information, visit www.houstonballet.org.