Lesley Rausch | Principal Dancer2022-11-18T13:55:05-08:00

Lesley Rausch

Lesley Rausch (she/her) is from Columbus, Ohio. She studied with Shir Lee Wu at Columbus Youth Ballet and also at Pacific Northwest Ballet School. She took summer courses at the School of American Ballet, International Dance School at Jackson, Mississippi, and Pacific Northwest Ballet. Lesley joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as member of the corps de ballet in 2001. She was promoted to soloist in 2007 and principal in 2011.

Lesley has danced leading roles in George Balanchine’s Agon, Apollo, Concerto Barocco, Coppélia (Swanilda, Dawn), Diamonds, Emeralds, The Four Temperaments, George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® (Sugar Plum Fairy, Dewdrop), La Valse, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Divertissement pas de deux, Titania, Helena), Prodigal Son, Rubies, Serenade, Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, Stravinsky Violin Concerto, and Symphony in C; Peter Boal’s Giselle (Giselle, Zulme); Val Caniparoli’s The Bridge and Lambarena; David Dawson’s Empire Noir and A Million Kisses to My Skin; Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven, Red Angels, Serious Pleasures, and Vespers; Nacho Duato’s Jardí Tancat; William Forsythe’s Artifact II, In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, New Suite, and One Flat Thing, reproduced; Kiyon Gaines’ ə{SCHWA}; Paul Gibson’s The Piano Dance and Rush; Ronald Hynd’s The Sleeping Beauty (Aurora); Jiri Kylian’s Forgotten Land and Petite Mort; Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Cendrillon (Stepmother) and Roméo et Juliette (Juliet, Rosaline); Mark Morris’ Pacific; Crystal Pite’s Emergence; Alexei Ratmansky’s Concerto DSCH, Don Quixote (Kitri, Mercedes, Queen of the Dryads), and Pictures at an Exhibition; Jerome Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun, The Concert, Fancy Free, Glass Pieces, and Other Dances; Kent Stowell’s Carmina Burana, Cinderella (Cinderella), Nutcracker (Clara, Flora, Peacock), and Swan Lake (Odette/Odile, Persian Dance); Twyla Tharp’s Brief Fling, In the Upper Room, Nine Sinatra Songs, Opus 111, and Waterbaby Bagatelles; and Christopher Wheeldon’s Polyphonia. She originated leading roles in Caniparoli’s The Seasons, Kyle Davis’ Las Estrellas, Gaines’ Sum Stravinsky, Edwaard Liang’s The Veil Between Worlds, Benjamin Millepied’s 3 Movements, Susan Stroman’s TAKE FIVE…More or Less, and Price Suddarth’s Signature.

In 1998, Lesley was a finalist in the Concours International de Danse de Paris. Lesley has performed as a guest artist with Chicago Dancing Festival (Robbins’ Afternoon of a Faun), Lafayette Ballet Theatre (Snow pas de deux and Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker), Nantucket Atheneum Dance Festival (Balcony pas de deux from Maillot’s Roméo et Juliette and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s Cylindrical Shadows), Nevada Ballet Theatre (Titania in Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream), Ballet Hawaii (Snow Queen, Dewdrop Fairy, and Hi’iaka in Septime Webre’s Nutcracker; Dark Angel in Balanchine’s Serenade; Tom Pazik’s By George; and Bobby Barnett’s Reflections) .

In addition to her performing career, Lesley has been a guest teacher at Ballet Hawaii, Evergreen City Ballet, New American Youth Ballet, and Punahou Dance School. She also is on the faculty of Pacific Northwest Ballet School.

Lesley is a Stott Certified Pilates Instructor and a certified instructor in Tai Ji Quan Moving for Better Balance and Madeline Black’s Series One and Two.

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