Name: Megan Ashley Giroir
Astrological Sign: Leo
Hometown: Columbia, Connecticut
Role in C’ville Ballet: Company Member
Food: I guess I’d have to say sushi or Mexican, although I definitely have a sweet tooth- especially for chocolate!
Book: Oddly enough, I would have to say that my favorite is this really old book of Hans Christian Andersen Fairy Tales. I remember reading it with my parents when I was little and I always picked it up when I couldn’t sleep. I still grab it every once in a while. Nothing beats the old-school, slightly creepy fairy tales.
Movie: Walk the Line
Quotation: “Dance like no ones watching.” If you are not dancing for yourself with emotion and passion, it doesn’t matter how beautiful your lines or feet or arms are; no one is going to want to watch you. It’s something I remind myself every time I perform.
Spot in C’ville: Having only been in C’ville for three weeks now, I haven’t had too much time to explore. But I have to say sitting in the Downtown Mall enjoying a casual brunch and the nice weather was very relaxing- definitely one of my favorite spots so far!
Business/Store in C’ville: Brixx’s Wood Fired Pizza at Barracks Road Shopping Center. I work there as a server and I have to say the pizzas they make are delicious!
NERDY BALLET QUESTIONS
Tell us about your dance background and training:
Both of my parents were professional ballet dancers so I got a very early start. When I was young I trained at Hartford Ballet, which later became Dance Connecticut. After graduating from high school, I continued my dance education at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre in its Graduate/Pre-professional division. I had excellent training in classical ballet but also enjoyed classes in everything from jazz, modern, character, flamenco and almost anything else you could imagine in the world of dance. I’ve been lucky enough to work with alot of amazing teachers and choreographers during my training. After leaving Pittsburgh, I began my professional career with Ballet Theatre of Maryland as an apprentice. I spent three seasons with the company dancing various roles. This is my first year with Charlottesville Ballet and am loving it so far!
What genres of dance do you enjoy?
I am a complete “bun head” at heart and love classical ballet, however, I have found that contemporary ballet works are my favorite to perform. I feel like they can be so much more thrilling and music-driven. I love doing both and having the balance of the old school classics and the slightly edgier contemporary pieces. The balance definitely keeps me thinking and working on dancing my best.
What kind of pointe shoe do you wear?
Bloch Axioms with a Strong Shank. I’ve tried a few others lately but always favor these.
Do you have a favorite ballet:
My favorite ballet would have to be Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante. I was lucky enough to be able to perform it when I was training in Pittsburgh. The work is pure classical ballet at its finest: beautiful to watch and so exciting to perform. It is also one of the most challenging ballets I’ve ever worked on.
What’s your favorite ballet/dance step:
I love pirouettes of any kind! Turning always provides a challenge and even though it’s not the easiest step to master, the feeling you get once you nail a turn perfectly is amazing.
Tell us, why do you dance?
I dance because I love it. Dance allows me to express myself no matter what I need to express. Whether it’s happiness, anger or frustration dancing is my way of getting it all out. Dancing allows me to constantly focus on improving my technique and artistry and I love that I will always be able to keep working and strive for perfection.
What other jobs/activities/academic pursuits are you involved in? I just started working as a server at Brixx Wood Fired Pizza on Barracks Road. I would love to further my education by going back to school when my schedule and budget allow it, but right now I’m focused on dancing. For the moment, I’m just enjoying living in Charlottesville and meeting new people in town and of course dancing with Charlottesville Ballet.
What other talents or passions do you have? I love reading and am glad to have a little more free time this year to knock out some of the books on my “want to read” list. I really enjoy Pilates and would love to work towards getting certified in both mat and reformer work.
Anything else you’d like to express: I’m so excited to be in the company this year. The whole company has such great energy and attitude– it’s so refreshing and creates such a nice work enviroment. I think this young company can do great things if we continue to work for it!
Megan’s full professional bio can be found online at www.CharlottesvilleBallet.org.
Thanks for enjoying our “Meet the Artist” segment–
and look for a new Charlottesville Ballet artist profile next month!