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Meet City Ballet's Twin Ballerinas

Kyla and Karissa Myers are starring in this season's production of The Nutcracker



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City Ballet's twin ballerinas, Kyla and Karissa Myers. | Photo: Robert Benson

Twin ballerinas Kyla and Karissa Myers have been dancing since they were six. Meet the PB residents who are in their ninth season with City Ballet and starring in its current production of The Nutcracker.
 

Whose idea was it to go into ballet?

Karissa: We started with tee ball, but never wanted to wear the helmets. We only wanted to wear sundresses to the practices and games. The coach told our parents that we couldn’t continue without being in the proper uniform. So our parents had us try ballet. We have loved it ever since.
 

Do you ever critique each other’s technique?

Karissa: Yes, all of the time.
 

How do you distinguish yourselves as dancers?

Karissa: People have said that I am more of a graceful dancer and my sister is more powerful. We do have different tendencies in our facial expressions on stage, as well.
 

Have you ever competed for the same role?

Kyla: We have always been competitive in a good way. We have always tried to keep up with one another. If one of us could do something first, the other one would then work harder to be able to do the same thing. Most of the time we are cast together, but we wouldn’t ever mind being cast separately, as well.
 

Why is The Nutcracker so special?

Kyla: The entire holiday season just wouldn’t feel the same without it. My sister and I have grown up doing Nutcracker for pretty much our entire ballet lives.
 

How would you explain the story to someone who has never seen it?

Karissa: The Nutcracker is about Clara, who was given a nutcracker doll, and then dreams of the nutcracker turning into her prince and they go on a magical journey through the Snow Kingdom and the Land of the Sweets.
 

Career highlight?

Karissa: One of my absolute favorites was the pas de trois in Balanchine’s Emeralds.
 

Any dream roles?

Kyla: I always enjoy performing Balanchine, so any time I get to do Balanchine it is like a dream.

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