Jessika Anspach is from Bellevue, Washington. She received her training at Pacific Northwest Ballet School, beginning with Creative Movement classes and progressing through to the Professional Division. In 2002, she joined the Suzanne Farrell Ballet as an apprentice. She joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2004 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2005.
Ms. Anspach’s writing on dance has been featured in Dance Magazine. She is also a frequent contributor to Pacific Northwest Ballet’s blog.
Jessika will be taking her final bow on the McCaw stage tomorrow, June 12th during the Encore Performance. She will be dancing roles in George Balanchine’s Mozartiana and Kiyon Ross’ Sum Stravinsky. Read Jessika’s retirement announcement here.
Most Embarrassing Story on stage:
Well for me there have been quite a few – just ask Sandy Barrack our stage manager who compiles our annual company blooper tape. But I have to say for me the most embarrassing when I took out a wing during the snow scene on the Christmas Eve show of Kent Stowell’s Nutcracker. As many of you know, for one night only we have a blizzard and snowball fight during that scene, and as I was exiting the stage got a fist-full of paper confetti in my face. Disoriented I ran into the wing, fell over it and ripped it. I had a couple more entrances so I bounced back immediately, the wing however did not fare as well.
In Company class, do you prefer barre or center?
I have to say I’m a barre girl. There’s something beautiful even sacred in doing my morning plies. Maybe I’m weird. But the barre is where I began and it’s good to be reminded of that daily and to continue strengthening the foundation of my technique.
Favorite place to go in Seattle?
I’m not sure I can call it my favorite, but the Queen Anne Uptown Espresso has become my haven between/before shows, rehearsals etc. Having lived on the Eastside for most of my career I couldn’t drive home during long breaks for fear of getting stuck in traffic. So I’d go up to Uptown to drink their delicious coffee, listen to their great music selection and either journal or people watch. They’ve got the best people watching right there!
Hobbies and inspirations outside of PNB?
I love to write! I believe I was born to be an artist and a storyteller, and for the past 12 years I’ve been able to do it through dance. I’m looking forward to having a bit more time to paint pictures with words instead.
Who/what inspires you to dance?
That’s easy! The one who has graciously gifted me with this life of a dancer and who knit this desire into my soul inspires me to dance everyday. With a humble and grateful heart I praise and worship Him, Jesus Christ, through this incredible art form and seek to bring Him glory. I owe it all to Him!