An Interview with the Romeo & Juliet Dancers October 11, 2022

As rehearsals at Atlanta Ballet continue for our upcoming performance, dancers Emily Carrico and Erik Kim sit down with CCS to talk about their creative approach to telling this classic love story. Keep reading for these dancers’ insights on our most immersive concert experience to date!

What have rehearsals been like so far with Claudia Schreier and with your other fellow dancers?

Emily Carrico: Being a part of the creative process for Claudia Schreier’s new work for the Cathedral Choral Society has been an invaluable experience. She has pushed us all to explore movement in new and challenging ways, while also embodying the iconic roles of Romeo and Juliet.

Erik Kim: It has been an interesting process. Rehearsals have been tedious at times due to the very nature of the narrative we are presenting; Claudia gives intricate steps and thoughtful tips on its execution. But at the end of the day, dancing the new choreography that we just created that day for the first time is one of the most rewarding feelings.

How do you embody the story of Romeo & Juliet in your dancing?

Emily Carrico: I have the privilege of dancing Juliet in the balcony scene. I try to bring innocence and joy to each step, but for this particular pas de deux I aim to show an evolution. The pas begins with hesitation and excitement and concludes with total abandonment as she knows she has truly found the love of her life.

What is a part of this new choreography that you find interesting or that audiences should look out for in the performance?

Erik Kim: Look out for the ballroom scene –– throughout this intricate scene, Romeo and Juliet’s attraction builds and builds in this more public setting. First, it begins with subtle glances, then, physical reaching –– a yearning. Finally, after minutes of court dancing, Romeo abandons his partner and rushes to Juliet, grasping her in a slow and intimate spin.

When you think about performing this piece in a space like Washington National Cathedral, what excites you the most?

Emily Carrico: I am thrilled to be performing inside such a beautiful and spiritual place. For me, I think it will bring the character of Juliet to another level!