Exclusive: Preview of Ballet Manila’s 20th Anniversary Part 2; a one-on-one with Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elizalde

Ms. Lisa Macuja with the dancers of Ballet Manila

Ms. Lisa Macuja has had an amazing on-going career living out her passion as a dynamic ballerina. She has become the Philippine’s first prima ballerina and the first foreign soloist to join Kirov Ballet (the Imperial Russian Ballet). It is easy to say that  she is an icon to Philippine culture and the arts.

My one-on-one with Ms. Lisa was a dream. I have always been a fan of the ballet. Being a ballerina myself, way back when, it was such an honor in having the opportunity to talk about her hopes for the future of ballet in the Philippines. Listening to her about not just celebrating the twenty years of devotion , but her ambitions to pass on the interest to future generations was truly inspiring.



She has traveled all across the world, performing and meeting many influential people. But, when I asked her what she is most proud of, her answer was simple. Ballet Manila.

Along with ballet master Osias Barroso, the concept of Ms. Lisa for Ballet Manila began in 1995 with just twelve dancers. Focusing on the rigid Russian method of classical ballet. Today, the company has expanded to now 50 professional dancers, performing in international tours more than 140 times, and recently becoming international; bringing in guest coreographers from around the world. I can see why Ms. Lisa would be so proud of her creation.

As for the future, Ms. Lisa states that she hopes to keep expanding Ballet Manila by looking for dancers not just around the metro but from all across the country. She intends to open more branches of the Lisa Macuja ballet school, and to continue advocating the art towards the next generation. Keeping the passion high and alive. Ms. Lisa agrees with me that with social media younger generations can discover the excellence of ballet, but there is nothing better then discovering through a live performance. That is why Ballet Manila has partnered with Star City, upong purchasing an admission ticket, giving a free pass to Aliw Theatre for children to see live performances. With partnerships like this and much more opportunities to tackle Ballet Manila has many more years of accommplishments.


BM 2.0 will showcase the vision of Ms. Lisa with performances such as “Paquita“, one of Ballet Manila’s staple in shows during the early years. “Ecole” a choreography of co-artistic director Osias Barroso, which has become a rite of passage for Ballet Manila dancers. Bloom” with special guest coreographer Annabelle Lopez ochoa, and “Tara Let’s” a clash of modern music with classical ballet. The concert will take you through the jorney of twenty years of hardwork, dedication and passion for the art of ballet. There is nothing better than celebrating one of the Philippine’s proudest achievements with one of Philippine’s icons.

So come out to the gala event! This Feburary 28 at 7.30pm to celebrate twenty proud years. (Matinee show on March 1, 3pm) Contact Ticket World at 891.9999 or visit ticketworld.com.ph for more information. 

4 thoughts on “Exclusive: Preview of Ballet Manila’s 20th Anniversary Part 2; a one-on-one with Ms. Lisa Macuja-Elizalde

  1. Nicely done kelsey!! Love the post! will make sure to catch their show! also so proud of you. keep up the good work. looking forward to your future posts


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