Ballet Embody's newest artist, Ellen Bast began her dance training in her hometown of Oak Ridge, TN. She continued her education at Goucher College, where she enjoyed a variety of performance opportunities, including George Balanchine's Episodes, staged by Nilas Martins. While at Goucher, she also studied West African dance and drumming techniques in Benin and Ghana and classical ballet technique in Córdoba, Argentina. Since receiving her BA in 2014, she has performed locally with Chorégraphie Antique, Howard County Ballet, Vaught Contemporary Ballet, and Ballet Nocturne. She has performed with Charm City Ballet under the direction of Pete Commander and Rebecca Friedman since 2015, most recently appearing as the Caterpillar in Alice in Wonderland. She also teaches as a member of CCB's faculty. Outside of the studio, Ellen is a research analyst with the Maryland Department of Commerce and resides in Baltimore City with her rescue cat Buffy. This is her first performance with Ballet Embody.
Learn more about Ellen!
Libra (I think?)
Mangos or hummus, but not together
Violet (but it changes daily)
Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Moulin Rouge (also changes daily)
"You're beautiful and you're organized." - Leslie Knope "It's ok if you fall apart sometimes. Tacos fall apart, and we still love them." - a meme
Favorite Music/Artist/Band/Musical Genre
Beyoncé and Dolly Parton (I'm from East Tennessee and grew up about an hour from Dollywood!)
Favorite Place to Be
Curled up with my cat, or somewhere with my friends
If you were a dinosaur, which dinosaur would you be?
Do you have any pets? If so, tell us about it/them!
Yes! I have a rescue black cat named Buffy! She has a neurological condition that causes her to overgroom, so she wears onesies to protect her skin. She's more fashionable than I am. I love her so much and will show you pictures on my phone if you ask (and probably if you don't). She has her own Instagram too!
What genre of dance is your favorite? Why?
Ballet - it's the one I've stuck with all these years. In the Before Times, I dabbled in aerial dance (silks/fabric, lyra) and really enjoyed that as well. Swing is fun too!
What is your favorite full length ballet/variation/performance? Why?
To watch: Complexions' David Bowie ballet, the entrance of Kingdom of the Shades, or Swan Lake To dance: I'd love to do Giselle or Firebird
Why do you dance?
It feels the most "right."
If you wear pointe shoes, what kind do you wear? If not pointe shoes, what kind of flat shoes do you prefer?
What other jobs/activities/talents/passions do you pursue?
During the day, I am a Research Analyst at the Maryland Department of Commerce. I also volunteer at BARCS (Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter).
What's a fun fact about you that tends to surprise people?
I misspelled "banana"' in the fifth grade spelling bee.
What are you looking forward to this season with Ballet Embody?
Dancing! And hopefully catching/not dropping a beach ball onstage! Catching things is not a strength of mine :)
photos provided by Ellen Bast