Pacific Northwest Ballet traditionally ends its season with an encore performance featuring those dancers who are leaving the company — and while there’s been little that’s traditional about this all-digital season, the Season Encore will nonetheless return, honoring seven departing dancers.
Among those leaving is one of the company’s most senior dancers: principal Laura Tisserand, who joined PNB (as Laura Gilbreath) as an apprentice in 2003. She and her husband, Jerome Tisserand, a fellow principal dancer who’s been with the company since 2007, are leaving to take new positions at Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo. Also departing from the principal ranks is another longtime company member: William Lin-Yee, with PNB since 2004.
Soloist Steven Loch, who joined the company in 2011, is leaving PNB to take a position with Miami City Ballet. Also departing are soloist Leah Merchant (a company member since 2007) and corps de ballet dancers Nancy Casciano and Angeli Kiana Mamon-Urrea. The latter became the first female student from PNB’s community outreach program DanceChance to join the company in 2015.
Most of the departing dancers will perform in Season Encore, a digital program that will stream June 18-21 (free to season subscribers and donors; $29 otherwise). It will feature excerpts from “Swan Lake” (two different versions, from choreographers Alexander Gorsky — staged by Alexei Ratmansky — and Kent Stowell), George Balanchine’s “La Valse,” Edwaard Liang’s “The Veil Between Worlds,” and works choreographed by PNB company members Leah Terada, Miles Pertl, Christopher D’Ariano and Ezra Thomson.
For more information on Season Encore, or on PNB’s recently announced 2021-22 season (in which the company returns to in-person performance), see pnb.org.