Pointe Magazine has ranked Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre soloists Gabrielle Thurlow and Luca Sbrizzi on its Top 10 Standout Performances of 2014 for their exuberant dancing in PBT’s April production of “Don Quixote.”
Thurlow and Sbrizzi share the Top 10 with performers from some of the world’s most prestigious ballet companies, including The Royal Ballet of London, Bolshoi Ballet of Russia, New York City Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. The duo will take the spotlight again in the lead roles of Marie and the Nutcracker Prince for PBT’s opening night performance of The Nutcracker at 7 p.m. Dec. 5.
“While Gabrielle Thurlow and Luca Sbrizzi have long been regarded as cornerstones among PBT’s ranks, their star power was relatively untested: Thurlow was a long-time corps member and Sbrizzi, a soloist, had been away from the stage nearly nine months following a career-threatening back injury. But they more than delivered,” Pointe Magazine Kathleen McGuire wrote. “During their brightly executed grand pas de deux, Thurlow brought playful sharpness, breezy turns and balances that said, ‘I could stay here all day.’ Sbrizzi’s refined technique and bounding jumps lent his Basilio the elegance of a man in love.”
PBT presented “Don Quixote,” a full-length classic known for its technical bravado and virtuosic dancing, as its 2013-2014 Season finale in April. PBT Artistic Director Terrence S. Orr cast Thurlow and Sbrizzi in the leading roles of Kitri and Basilio for the company’s April 12, matinee performance. The pair will partner throughout The Nutcracker’s 24-performance run in the leading roles of Marie and the Nutcracker Prince as well as the Sugarplum Fairy and her Cavalier.
Thurlow is a native of Buffalo, N.Y., and is in her seventh season with PBT. She received her training from Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School, where she participated in the Graduate Program, and Neglia Conservatory of Ballet in Buffalo. She has also studied at various summer programs, including School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theatre in New York. Thurlow was promoted to soloist in April 2013.
Sbrizzi was born in Udine, Italy, where he trained with his sister, Alessia Sbrizzi, at Abidance and Pino Carbone at “Club il Vortice.” After dancing with Boston Ballet II, Sbrizzi joined PBT in 2007 and has performed roles including, Bluebird in Terrence S. Orr’s “The Sleeping Beauty,” Ballet Boy in Twyla Tharp’s “In the Upper Room,” Peter Pan in Jorden Morris’ “Peter Pan,” Frederick and Renfield in Ben Stevenson’s “Dracula,” Matthew in Jorden Morris’ “Moulin Rouge® – The Ballet,” the Prince in Septime Webre’s “Cinderella” and Basilio in PBT’s “Don Quixote.” In 2011, Luca was promoted to soloist. He lives with his wife Jenna in their home in Stanton Heights.
See Gabrielle Thurlow and Luca Sbrizzi make magic as Marie and The Nutcracker Prince this December! For tickets and details, click here.