Hayna Gutierrez announces retirement after nine seasons with Alberta Ballet

For immediate release – Alberta, Canada

April 18, 2019 – After nine stunning years with Alberta Ballet, principal dancer Hayna Gutierrez has announced her retirement.

Her final performances will be in the upcoming presentation of Joni Mitchell’s The Fiddle and The Drum, in Calgary from May 1-4 and Edmonton May 9-11.

“During my 35-year career making dances, there have been very few dancers with the intelligence, the artistry, the determination, the discipline and the passion she possesses. For any choreographer or Artistic Director, a dancer with Hayna’s brilliance is a blessing for she is not only a dancer of great talent, she is a muse,” said Artistic Director Jean Grand-Maître. “I would like to thank her for the hundreds of extraordinary performances she has given us and for making ballet an even more powerful art form in this province.”

Born in Havana, Cuba, Hayna started her dance career after training at the Cuban National Ballet School. In 1998 she joined the Ballet Nacional de Cuba and was promoted to principal dancer in 2004.

She performed as a guest principal dancer with some of the world’s most prestigious companies in roles like Giselle, Don Quixote’s Kitri, Aurora in Sleeping Beauty, Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, and Cio Cio San in Madame Butterfly, to name a few.

In 2010, Hayna joined Alberta Ballet and has developed a devoted following of fans, all of which have expressed extreme gratitude for the time she has spent performing for them.

“To me, she is the epitome of a classical dancer with a unique mix of power and grace; from the roles of Giselle to Princess Aurora she has a pure line of elegance, beautiful turns and physical and facial expressiveness that make every emotion transparent,” said Dance Circle member Pam FitzGerald. “’Brava’ dearest Hayna for an exemplary career … We thank you for dancing straight into our hearts.”

Dance Circle members Natasha and Michael Simaeys said they are sorry to see her go.

“Hayna Gutierrez is one of those dancers who offers boundless emotion and energy to the audience. The experience of watching ballet will always be an ephemeral one, but Hayna possesses the ability to leave a vivid and lasting impression on one’s mind,” said Michael Simaeys.

“Hayna Gutierrez is an extraordinary dancer! She expresses so much dedication, strength, and passion on stage and in the studio. Her personality shines through and this is what really captured our admiration for her remarkable dancing, and her unique translation of ballet. We wish her all the best for her future,” added Natasha Simaeys.

Hayna’s stand-out roles with Alberta Ballet have included performances in several of Grand-Maître’s signature portrait ballets featuring music by stars like Joni Mitchell, k.d.lang, Gordon Lightfoot, The Tragically Hip, Sir Elton John and Sarah McLachlan.

She also created roles in Balletlujah! (She), Yukichi Hattori’s Carmen (Carmen) Christopher Anderson’s Cinderella (Cinderella/Fairy Godmother), Wen Wei Wang’s Futureland. Hayna has danced featured or principal roles in Balanchine’s Serenade (Waltz), Ballo della Regina, Tschaikovsky Pas de Deux, Divertimento No .15 (Ballerina/Easy girl), Twyla Tharp’s In The Upper Room, Jiri Kylian’s Forgotten Land (Black couple).

In 2013, she won the Miami Life Award for Best Hispanic Female Dancer.

Hayna is married to Alberta Ballet dancer Garrett Groat and three years ago, they had a gorgeous son, Mateo. In 2018, Hayna became a Canadian citizen and will continue to call Calgary home.

For interviews with Hayna, Jean or any of the Alberta Ballet artistic team, or to attend her final performances in Calgary or Edmonton for Joni Mitchell’s The Fiddle and The Drum, please email communications@albertaballet.com.

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About Alberta Ballet

Alberta Ballet, under the direction of Artistic Director Jean Grand-Maître, connects audiences with dance that excites and inspires. The company reaches thousands of Albertans over the course of its September to May season and has toured across Canada and internationally.  Through both the originality of its programming and the talent of its classically-trained dancers, Alberta Ballet has earned a passionate following in its twin home cities, Calgary and Edmonton, and abroad.


Media Inquiries:
Kim Jackson
Communications Manager
Alberta Ballet
m: 587.999.0306
0: 403.245.4222 ext. 710 

Kim Jackson