Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Ballet Philippines Principal Dancer Katherine Trofeo Hangs Up Her Pointe Shoes
As the curtain fell on the last show of Ballet Philippines’ Sapphire Season, the company bid a tearful farewell to esteemed principal dancer, Katherine Trofeo. The dancers, scholars, and artistic team led by Artistic Director Paul Alexander Morales presented her with roses onstage, one by one as a video highlighting Katherine and her extraordinary artistry.
Fondly called “Mommy Kit”, she is an inspiration to everyone around her. As a principal dancer, she not only showcases exceptional dance technique and exquisite artistry, but she also possesses a wonderful character which translates into her dancing. Whenever she performs onstage, she never fails to captivate with her ability to take on a role and give it new life with her own interpretation. Her portrayal of the psychic vampire, Gonongleda in “MANHID: The Pinoy Superhero Musical” has been described as transformative. Gonongleda was her final role as principal dancer of Ballet Philippines.
Katherine started taking ballet at the age of 8 under Amelia Yulo and turned professional at the age of 15 with mentor Enrico Labayen’s Lab Project. Katherine has worked with the finest choreographers and teachers including Alan Hineline, Max Luna III, Anatoli Panasiukov, Gener Karingal, Ida Beltran, Tony Fabella, Maiqui Manosa, Nonoy Froilan, Edna Vida, Denisa Reyes, Paul Morales, Irene Sabas, Anna Villadolid, Thomas Mayr, Jean Paul Comelin, Jean Paul Comelin, Graham Lustig, Stefan Hoff, David Campos Cantero, Michael Chernov, and Gelsey Kirkland.
With Philippine Ballet Theatre, she received praise from critics for her performances as Esmeralda in the Asian premiere of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Kitri in Don Quixote, Nikiya in La Bayadere, Odette- Odile in Swan Lake, Ballerina in Paquita, and Cio-Cio San in Madame Butterfly. She has also performed in featured roles in Myra Beltran’s Dance Forum, including the Romeo and Juliet Project and Payatas: Point Counterpoint, a dance video project of Beltran and film director Carlitos Siguion Reyna during the Global Dance 2002 World Dance Alliance Festival in Dusseldorf, Germany.
Katherine joined BP in 2008 and performed lead roles such as Swanilda in Coppelia, Marie in The Nutcraker, Wendy in Peter Pan, Maria Clara in Crisostomo Ibarra, Manda in Pusong Wagas, Sita in Rama Hari, Dryad Queen, Kitri in Don Quixote, Aurora in Sleeping Beauty and the title role in Giselle.
She was twice nominated for Philstage’s Gawad Buhay Awards in 2011 for Female Featured Performance in a Modern Dance Production for Encantada and Female Lead Performance in a Modern Dance Production for Carlo Pacis’ Mithi, and again nominated for the same award in 2012 for her lead performance in Rama Hari. The role of Titania in Pacis’ A Midsummer Night’s Dream was created on her.
This, however, is not a goodbye. Katherine will continue to teach Intermediate Ballet in the Ballet Philippines Dance School’s Summer Dance Workshop, and has this to say to the supporters of Ballet Philippines:
“I look forward to watching the younger dancers bloom and find their own voices in our art form. BP has always had this culture of excellence and passion for dance. I was very privileged to have experienced that and humbled by how the creators of the company along with past directors and ex-dancers keep giving and passing on their knowledge to the current generation. I look forward to being part of that...of those who keep coming back and helping "the family" out.”
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