Barre Talk with Robert Hill

Welcome to Barre Talk with Robert Hill, Artistic Director of Orlando Ballet! Delve into Robert’s career as he interviews incredible artists, artistic directors, and even fans! A podcast for those who have an interest in the world of dance and the people who inhabit it.


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Phillip Broomhead

Phillip Broomhead is a former Principal Dancer with The Royal Ballet and Houston Ballet and the current Orlando Ballet School Director. Phillip joins Robert for a conversation about their careers, how Orlando Ballet School is navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, and what they are most proud of at Orlando Ballet.

Charmaine Hunter

Robert sits down with former Dance Theatre of Harlem Principal Ballerina, Charmaine Hunter who now serves as Orlando Ballet’s Director of Community Enrichment. The two talk about their professional careers, the importance of accessibility within the dance world, and how they see the future of ballet.

Introducing Barre Talk with Robert Hill

Welcome to Barre Talk with Robert Hill, Artistic Director of Orlando Ballet. Delve into Robert’s career as he interviews incredible artists, artistic directors and even fans! A podcast for those who have an interest in the world of dance and the people who inhabit it.

Desmond Richardson & Charmaine Hunter

Desmond Richardson was a principal dancer at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and is the co-founder and co-artistic director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Desmond joins Charmaine Hunter and Robert Hill for a conversation about the state of dance, their careers, and how artistry is shifting post-COVID-19.

Adam Boreland & Matthew Cunningham

Robert sits down with Orlando Ballet company dancers, Adam Boreland and Matthew Cunningham to talk about their wickedly entertaining roles in Orlando Ballet’s “Cinderella” from the 19/20 season, and their journeys becoming professional ballet dancers.

Krista Ledden

Robert sits down with Krista Ledden, former company dancer with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and Twyla Tharp Dance. Krista is an Orlando Ballet Board member and fitness thru dance instructor at Orlando Ballet School. The two talk about Krista’s career, her philanthropy at Orlando Ballet, her popular BeMoved class and dancing at any age!

Jerry Mitchell 

This week Robert is joined by Tony Award-winning theater director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell. The two cover a range of topics from their early days as colleagues to their respective roles today. Mr. Mitchell, who in 2013, earned the Tony Award for Best Choreography for “Kinky Boots,” was also nominated for Best Direction of a Musical. Mitchell is currently the director for “On Your Feet,” a musical about the lives of Gloria and Emilio Estefan.

Yan Chen and Chloe Misseldine 

Mother-daughter duo Yan Chen and Chloe Misseldine join Robert Hill on this week’s Barre Talk! Yan Chen is a former soloist at American Ballet Theater and current Ballet Master at Orlando Ballet. Following in her mother’s footsteps, Chloe Misseldine is currently an apprentice with American Ballet Theater. Chloe began her training as a child at Orlando Ballet School before joining American Ballet Theatre Studio Company in 2018.

Aleksandar Antonijevic

Robert is joined by Aleksandar Antonijevic on this week’s episode of Barre Talk. A former principal dancer with the National Ballet of Canada for over 20 years, Aleksandar talks to Robert about his career and extending his love of dance from the stage into his passion behind the lens.

Lauren Anderson

This week’s Barre Talk guest is world-renowned ballerina, Lauren Anderson. Lauren danced with Houston Ballet and became the first African-American to be promoted to principal dancer at Houston Ballet. Lauren currently works in Houston Ballet’s Education and Community Engagement program where she conducts master classes at area schools, and lectures to students on dance and her historic career as one of America’s most distinguished African-American ballerinas. In the spring of 2016, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture awarded her with a permanent exhibit.

Joshua Vickery

Joshua Vickery, Founder and Executive Director of Central Florida Community Arts, joins Robert Hill on this week’s Barre Talk. CFCArts strives to make the arts affordable and accessible and uses the arts as a catalyst to create change in the community in a variety of ways. Joshua and Robert talk about the partnership between Orlando Ballet and CFCArts, the arts community in Orlando, and Joshua’s career.

Susan Jaffe

World-renowned ballerina and newly appointed Artistic Director of Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Susan Jaffe joins Robert Hill on this week’s episode of Barre Talk. Susan was a principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre for 22 years, beginning in 1980. She appeared prominently in the international dance scene and frequently danced with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Susan and Robert talk about their time at American Ballet Theatre and their experience as artistic directors during a global pandemic.

Tim Kashani

This week’s Barre Talk guest is Broadway producer, director and co-founder of Apples and Oranges Arts, Tim Kashani! Pamela and Tim Kashani sponsored Orlando Ballet’s Dance Accelerator program which is modeled after the Kashanis’ “Theater Accelerator,” An immersive musical theatre intensive development accelerator for promising storytellers. Tim Kashani serves on the Orlando Ballet Board of Directors.

Virginia Johnson

This week’s Barre Talk guest is Dance Theatre of Harlem Artistic Director, Virginia Johnson. Johnson was a founding member of Dance Theatre of Harlem and was one of its principal ballerinas over a career that spanned nearly 30 years. After retiring, Johnson went on to found Pointe Magazine and was editor-in-chief for 10 years.

Julio Bocca 

This week’s guest is world-renowned ballet sensation, Julio Bocca! Bocca has been called one of the most popular Argentine dancers of all time and is a recipient of many prestigious awards including The New York Times Dancers of the Year. He spent twenty years as a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre and went on to serve as artistic director of the National Ballet of Uruguay.

Lourdes Lopez

Internationally celebrated ballerina and current artistic director of Miami City Ballet, Lourdes Lopez joins Robert Hill on this week’s Barre Talk. Lourdes Lopez was recently named one of “The Most Influential People in Dance Today” by Dance Magazine. She became artistic director of Miami City Ballet in 2012, bringing with her a nearly 40-year career in dance, television, teaching, and arts management. As a Soloist and Principal Dancer with New York City Ballet, Lopez danced for two legends of the art form, George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins

Kate-Lynn Robichaux & Rachele Eusebione

This week Robert Hill is joined by Orlando Ballet dancers, Kate-Lynn Robichaux and Rachele Eusebione! Kate-Lynn joined the Orlando Ballet Company in 2011 and has danced many principal roles during her career. Rachele spent two years with the Orlando Ballet Second Company and was recently promoted to the main company as an apprentice for the 20/21 season. Kate-lynn and Rachele speak with Robert about their training, careers and life at Orlando Ballet.

Luis Gonzalez and Israel Zavaleta Escobedo

As we continue to strive to reach wider audiences, this week’s Barre Talk episode is in Spanish featuring Orlando Ballet Company dancers, Luis Gonzalez and Israel Zavaleta Escobedo. Luis and Israel chat with Robert about their training, careers, and life at Orlando Ballet.

Luis Gonzalez joined Orlando Ballet in 2012 through 2015. From there, he joined Joffrey Ballet in 2015. Gonzalez returned to Orlando Ballet for the  2019/20 season.

Israel Zavaleta Escobedo joined Orlando Ballet’s second company in 2018 after attending the OBS Summer Intensive. He spent two years as a member of Orlando Ballet’s Second Company. Escobedo was promoted from Company Apprentice to Main Company member for the 20/21 season.

Susan Jones

This week’s Barre Talk guest is an internationally recognized stager and coach, Susan Jones. Susan is currently a Regisseur at American Ballet Theatre where she danced with the Company for eight successive seasons. She was appointed Regisseur in 1980. Next year will mark 50 years since Jones joined ABT!

Jones has staged works for Orlando Ballet including Don Quixote and Sinatra Suite. Her ABT stagings include George Balanchine’s Symphonie Concertante, Agnes de Mille’s Fall River Legend, Twyla Tharp’s Push Comes to Shove, Bach Partita, The Brahms-Haydn Variations, and many others.

Kevin O’Hare 

This week’s Barre Talk guest is Kevin O’Hare, Director of The Royal Ballet. O’Hare’s ballet career began with The Royal Ballet’s sister company Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet. He became a Principal dancer during its transformation into Birmingham Royal Ballet. He performed extensively in the UK and internationally with leading figures in the ballet world, including Ninette de Valois, Peter Wright, Frederick Ashton, MacMillan and David Bintley. O’Hare is celebrating his ninth season as Director of the Royal Ballet.

Abdur-Rahim Jackson

This week’s guest is Abdur-Rahim Jackson graduate of The Juilliard School, former Principal Dancer with The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Broadway performer. He has created ballets for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Complexions Contemporary Ballet and Orlando Ballet. Abdur-Rahim co-choreographed Beyoncé “Halo” music video and choreographed the LED sections of Beyoncé “Crazy in Love” Super Bowl XLVII Halftime performance on CBS. He has also choreographed the Salt-N-Pepa Lane Bryant Campaign, L’Oréal/Matrix and JCPenney Salons Hair and Fashion Shows across the country.

Rosalinda & Diana Farias Ortegón

As we continue to strive to reach wider audiences, this week’s Barre Talk episode is in Spanish featuring sisters, Rosalinda and Diana Farias Ortegón. Rosalinda and Diana chat with Robert about their careers, their time spent together at Ballet de Monterrey, and what they hope to see for the future of ballet in Mexico.

Chad Pitt

This week’s Barre Talk guest is radio personality, Chad Pitt! Chad is one half of the “Chad and Leslye in the Morning” on Magic 107.7. He’s spent 15+ years behind a microphone, on television, hosting award shows, and advocating for many local and national non-profit organizations. We’re thrilled that Chad will be narrating the voice of Carabosse in our upcoming production of The Sleeping Beauty!

Robert Garland

Robert is joined by former Dance Theatre of Harlem principal dancer, Robert Garland on this week’s Barre Talk. After creating a work for the DTH School Ensemble, Arthur Mitchell invited Robert Garland to create a work for The Dance Theatre of Harlem Company and appointed him the organization’s first Resident Choreographer. Garland has also created works for New York City Ballet, Britain’s Royal Ballet, Oakland Ballet, and many others. He also holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from the Juilliard School in New York City and is currently the Dance Theatre of Harlem School Director.

Ramona Pansegrau

This week’s Barre Talk guest is Kansas City Ballet Music Director, Ramona Pansegrau. Pansegrau has been called one of the best ballet pianists in the world. She was the music director for Tulsa Ballet for nine years, and conductor of the Tulsa Symphony orchestra for ballet performances prior to joining Kansas City Ballet in October 2006. Pansegrau’s other ongoing engagements include Music Director and Conductor for the USA International Ballet Competition and a guest conductor for Orlando Ballet.

Masazumi Chaya

Robert is joined by the legendary Masazumi Chaya, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s former Associate Artistic Director. Chaya joined AAADT in 1972 and performed with the Company for 15 years. In 1988, he became the Company’s Rehearsal Director after serving as Assistant Rehearsal Director for two years. A master teacher, both on tour with the Company and in his native Japan, he served as choreographic assistant to Alvin Ailey and John Butler. From 1991 to 2019, Mr. Chaya served as Associate Artistic Director of the Company.

Denise Roberts Hurlin 

This week’s Barre Talk guest is Denise Roberts Hurlin. Denise was a founding member of Parsons Dance Company and a member of the Paul Taylor Dance Company. Denise and fellow Paul Taylor dancer, Hernando Cortez, co-founded Dancers Responding to AIDS as a vehicle to help many of their friends and fellow dancers who had become ill. Denise remains in her role as founding director, leading the program’s efforts to continue providing a safety net for the dance community.

Michael Pink 

Robert is joined by Michael Pink, British choreographer, director, dancer, and theatre producer whose works and style have been referred to as “classical ballet for the 21st century.” Pink began his professional career as a dancer with the London Festival Ballet (now the English National Ballet). After retiring from the stage, Pink went on to choreograph, direct, and teach internationally. He has served as the Artistic Director of the Milwaukee Ballet for the last 16 years.