Paola Hartley – Ballet, Pointe
Miss Hartley was born in Bonn, Germany, and grew up in South Africa and Chile, where her parents danced for P.A.C.T. Ballet and Ballet de Santiago. She studied at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts with teachers such as Melissa Hayden, Duncan Noble, Gyula Pandi , Dianne Markham and Trish Casey.
In 1993 she joined Ballet de Santiago with Marcia Haydee as her director. In 1997 Ivan Nagy took over the company and Miss Hartley was promoted to soloist after performing the role of Myrtha in “Giselle” with guest artist Igor Zelensky. During her years with Ballet de Santiago, she worked with other guest artists such as Jose Manuel Carreño, Maximiliano Guerra, Carlos Acosta, and Lauren Anderson. She performed leading roles such as Olga in John Cranko’s “Eugene Onegin”, TheMad Lady in Ben Stevenson’s “Peer Gynt”, Mercedes in “Don Quijote”, The Countess in Ronal Hynd’s “The Devil to Pay” and Stella in Mauricio Wainrot’s World Premiere of “Streetcar Named Desire”. She had the opportunity to work with choreographers such as Ronald Hynd, Ben Stevenson, Trey Mc Intyre, David Parsons and Natalia Makarova.
In July of 1998 Miss Hartley was invited to join Ballet Arizona as a Principal Dancer, company now under the directorship of Ib Andersen since 2000. Since arriving, she has expanded her modern repertoire by working and performing pieces from Kevin O’Day (“Hellblondegroove”), Paul Taylor (“Company B”), Twyla Tharp (“Sinatra Suite” and “The Golden Section”), Julia Adams (“Before”), and world premieres by Moses Pendleton (“Opus Cactus”) and Dwight Rhoden (“Skinny Puzzle” and “Scarlet Symphony”). She performed with guest artists such as Marcelo Gomes (“La Fille mal Gardee “ pas de deux), Nikolaj Hubbe (“Napoli”) and Gael Lambiotte (“Swan Lake”). Her leading roles in full length productions include Aurora in “Sleeping Beauty”, Odette/Odile in “Swan Lake”, Giselle in “Giselle”, Juliet in “Romeo and Juliet”, Swanilda in “Coppelia”, The Sylph in “La Sylphide”, and Kitri in “Don Quijote”. She has premiered leading roles in Ib Andersen’s productions of “Midsummer Nights Dream”, “Play”, “Indigo Rhapsody”, “Amoroso”, “Mozaic”, and “Topia”. Her Balanchine repertoire includes principal roles in ballets such as “Theme and Variations”, “Allegro Brillante”, “Apollo”, “Serenade”, “Four Temperaments”, “Divertimento No 15”, “Duo Concertante”, “Concerto Barroco”, “Stravinsky Violin Concerto”and “Rubies”. She has received extensive coaching from stagers such as Olga Eivrenoff, Freddie Franklin, Sandra Jennings, Susan Hendl and Elaine Kudo.
During the summers of 2009 and 2008, Miss Hartley performed with local company Novaballet. She worked with upcoming choreographer Emery Le Crone in “Pulling to Break”, performed Vicente Nebrada’s “Our Waltzes”, and restaged David Palmer and Yanis Pikieris’ “Adiemus”. Miss Hartley has toured in Stuttgart, Buenos Aires, Budapest and New York. She performed with partner Astrit Zejnati at a Gala in Albania in 2005 and at the Miami International Dance Festival in 2006. She has been seen by millions performing as a guest artist in the Chilean TV talent show “Rojo Fama Contrafama”, where her father is a judge. In her spare time she has taught ballet at several dance academies of the valley, such as Tempe Dance Academy, Master Ballet Academy, and The School of Ballet Arizona.
In the summer of 2011 and 2012, Miss Hartley was invited as a guest faculty member at the Goh Ballet Academy in Vancouver, Canada.
In 2013, Miss Hartley joined The Suzanne Farrell Ballet as a Soloist, where she performed the leading roles in George Balanchine’s “Pas de Dix”, “Tempo di Valse”, “Episodes” (Symphony and Concerto), “Agon” (2nd Pas de Trois), “Swan Lake”,”Allegro Brillante”, the role of Juliet in Paul Mejia’s “Romeo and Juliet”, and the Butch Girl in Jerome Robbins’ “The. Concert”.
In 2015, Miss Hartley retires from Ballet Arizona and has become one mother of a beautiful boy while also continuing her career as a guest artist and teacher.