Fairchild and Peck: Dancing an eternal pas de deux

Mondays at DT equal "city.ballet." recaps, and we’ve now made it to one of my favorite episodes: “Relationships.” This is the really juicy stuff that rarely makes it past the City Ballet threshold, unless the relationship develops into marriage—at which point it becomes public domain.

We’re given glimpses into the relationship histories of two well-known City Ballet couples, Robert Fairchild/Tiler Peck (now engaged) and Megan Fairchild/Andy Veyette (married). It’s impossible not to be charmed by Peck’s sheepish recounting of her off-and-on teenage relationship with Fairchild, just as it’s hard not to smile at Fairchild’s obvious pride over their engagement. But I’m actually much more partial to the other Fairchild, Megan, and her husband Andy. His sense of humor is two parts pure wit and one part sweet sarcasm (“We got married because I could not deal with how awkward it would be if we broke up”), and she seems incredibly down-to-earth. A bit of further investigation, via The New York Times’ vows section, reveals that the two were pretty much polar opposites when they met.

Principal Sara Mearns and soloist Georgina Pazcoguin are surprisingly open about their relationship trials and tribulations, though they are careful not to name names. Mearns admits that she formerly dated someone still in the company, but things are still adult and professional between the two of them. In fact, she says, he’s now one of her favorite partners. Pazcoguin slyly cops NYCB’s penchant for “many an interoffice love affair,” but she is equally professional regarding her company ex(es), mandating that no matter what happens offstage between her and her partner, she will make sure the two of them are radiating nothing but unconditional love onstage together.

I do wish the webisode had spent a little more time discussing the sibling dynamics at City Ballet, though. There are three sets of siblings at the company—Tyler and Jared Angle, Megan and Robert Fairchild, Jonathan and Abi Stafford. It’d be interesting to see if those relationships have any effect on rehearsals or performances.

For the past 17 years, the Martha Hill Fund has been honoring the commitment to dance education and international performance embodied by its namesake. Previous award winners have included Carla Maxwell, former artistic director of Limón Dance Company, former Ailey II dancer Frederick Earl Mosley and Mark DeGarmo of Mark DeGarmo Dance.

This year's awards gala takes place tonight at the Manhattan Penthouse in New York City. Check out who's being honored.

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