Huntsville Ballet Company hires first professional dancers

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Huntsville is the Rocket City, but it's also a city with a thriving arts community.  That community got a lot stronger Thursday, when the Huntsville Ballet Company hired its first pro dancers.

Artistic Director Phillip Otto says it's time. "Really, my vision that I had once I came here, and spent a year was to develop a pro company right here in Huntsville. You know, just like there is in Nashville, and Birmingham and all around the country," said Otto.

Huntsville City Councilman Will Culver made the official announcement, calling it an incredible day.  He was the one who introduced the new pros to the interested ballet fans and the media.  Sarah Paut and Jayson Pescasio are both veteran professionals who have made several guest appearances with Huntsville Ballet. Both of them love the city's embrace of the arts.

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Sarah is also excited about something she can do for young dangers. "It's really important to me to set a good example, to show them what it's like to be a professional ballerina, and what it takes... the work ethic. You know, how to behave on stage, and back stage. The whole package is really my goal," said Sarah.

Jayson also has a special goal -- to draw more young guys into ballet. "It's not just tutu and pointy shoes.  These are workouts that boys love, and they're able to express themselves, and see that this is really what I want to do," said Jayson.

The two new Huntsville Ballet professionals will be busy.  Among other duties, they'll dance, they'll teach, and they'll learn the business of a ballet school.