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Houston Ballet's Melody MenniteMelody Mennite, Principal

Birthplace
Santa Cruz, California

Dance Training
Houston Ballet's Ben Stevenson Academy
Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre

Joined the Company
2001

Promoted to Principal
2008

Favorite Role
Marie, La Sylphide, Hush and Petit Mort, is that more than one? I dont think I can pick just one...

One defining moment…
The moment I cherish most is when I held my son for the first time.

A native of Santa Cruz, California, Melody Mennite trained at Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre under Robert Kelley and Diane McLarty and at Pacific Northwest Ballet. She also attended summer intensive programs with Suzanne Farrell. At the age of 13, Ms. Mennite began her training with Houston Ballet's Ben Stevenson Academy and also attended three consecutive summer intensive programs with the academy. In the 2000-2001 season, she spent one year in Houston Ballet II on full scholarship and stipend. Ms. Mennite also won a scholarship award from Regional Dance America in 2000. She was invited to tour with Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre through Tansonmer, Austria. Prior to joining Houston Ballet, she performed numerous leading roles with Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre: the Sugar Plum Fairy and Snow Queen in The Nutcracker; Kitri in Don Quixote and Odette in Swan Lake. She has performed a number of featured roles with Houston Ballet including: Olga and Tatiana in John Cranko's Onegin, Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Neopolitan Princess in Stanton Welch's Swan Lake, the Spring Fairy in Ben Stevenson's Cinderella, Swanilda and Dawn in Coppelia, Valencienne in The Merry Widow, Cio-Cio San and Kate in Madame Butterfly, and Cinderella in Stanton Welch's Cinderella. Ms. Mennite has also been featured in contemporary roles including the white pas de deux in Jirí Kylián’s Forgotten Land, and Petite Mort; Stanton Welch's Velocity, Indigo, Wildlife, and Brigade; Christopher Bruce's Ghost Dances, Rooster and Hush; Harald Lander's Etudes; Paul Taylor's Company B; William Forsythe's In The Middle, Somewhat Elevated; George Balanchine's The Four Temperaments and Serenade; and Mark Morris's Sandpaper Ballet.  

Created the role of Marie in Stanton's Marie, Rosie in The Core, Nikya in La Bayadère, Odette/Odile in Swan Lake and Spring in The Four Seasons, Divergence, Falling, Carmina Burana, Velocity; The Sylph in August Bournoville's La Sylphide; Lise in Sir Frederick Ashton's La Fille mal gardée; Jerome Robbins' Fancy Free; Principle Roles in Balanchine's Rubies, Emeralds, and Ballo De Regina; William Forsythe The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude; Principle role in Christopher Wheeldon's Carousel; Younger Daughter in Christopher Bruce's Hush, Rooster, Sergeant Early's Dream; Jiří Kylián's Falling Angels, Petit Mort; Manon in Sir Kenneth McMillan's Manon; Blue Bird in Ben Stevenson's The Sleeping Beauty. Frequently appears as a guest artist in galas and with companies nationally and internationally. Also performs in Seattle with Whim W'Him, where she originated roles in Cylindrical Shadows by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa and Monster by Olivier Wevers.

 

 


Houston Ballet's Melody Mennite  

Resource Links Below


Press:

Letter to my teenage self - Dancespirit.com

On Balance: How to Nail Long Balances - Dancespirit.com

Videos:
Meet the Artist: Melody Mennite

Christopher Bruce's Hush

 

Headshot by: Pam Francis
Photo: Drew Donovan