Helen Daigle is coming home — at least for a few days.
The principal dancer for the Louisville Ballet for the past 16 years, the Baton Rouge native will showcase her talents Friday as the guest artist for the Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre’s spring concert “Beyond Ballet,” which will be staged at the Baton Rouge River Center Theatre for the Performing Arts.
The ballerina plans to do more than dance on this visit to her hometown, where the road to her professional dance career began with the ballet theater.
“I always love visiting Baton Rouge, and I’m bringing my 4½-year-old son Keiran with me this time,” she says. “We’re going to visit my mother, and he’s old enough now to attend the performance, so my mom is going to bring him.”
Then, it’s back to Louisville on Saturday, where husband Brad Muss stayed behind with their 18-month-old daughter Iris.
“She wasn’t old enough to come,” Daigle says. “So, I need to get back to her.”
But not before Daigle performs choreographer Adam Hougland’s “Unyielding Radiance” on the Baton Rouge stage with fellow Louisville Ballet principal Brandon Ragland.
The performance will mark Ragland’s second appearance in Baton Rouge. He danced the part of Prince Siegfried, opposite Daigle’s Princess Odette, in Act II of “Swan Lake” in Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre’s 2010 spring concert, “From This Pointe On …”
“Right now, we’re finishing up a production with the Louisville Ballet, and we’ll rehearse ‘Unyielding Radiance’ on Monday and Tuesday,” Daigle says. “We’ve done this dance together before, so we’re already familiar with it. We’ll come into Baton Rouge on Wednesday, rehearse it Thursday, then perform it Friday.”
The dance is one of two Daigle will be performing in the concert’s mixed bill of contemporary dance and modern ballet.
The other is titled “Awakenings,” choreographed by Baton Rouge Ballet Theatre alum Amelie Hunter, now chairwoman of the Orange Coast College Dance Department in Costa Mesa, California.
The show also will include such works as “Stirrings,” by international dancer-choreographer Charlotte Boye-Christensen, and the Baton Rouge premiere of “Avalon,” by Martha Graham Dance Co. principal dancer Blakeley White-McGuire.
White-McGuire is a former resident of Port Allen and former member of Baton Rouge professional contemporary dance company Of Moving Colors.
“Beyond Ballet” also will feature the works of local choreographers Jonna Cox, Mina Estrada and Susan Perlis, along with a new work by emerging choreographer and company member Ketreon Butler. Finally, the show will mark the debut of the company’s newest contemporary dance troupe, Ensemble.
“It’s called ‘Beyond Ballet,’ ” Daigle says. “It’s a contemporary concert, and I’m looking forward to it.”