Stories from THE STREETS

Nadyne is originally from Sao Paulo, Brazil. She won a nine month contract to dance with the Atlanta Ballet Company 2 by competing in the Youth America Grand Prix [YAGP] in New York. I found Nadyne on Instagram @nadyne_bispo through @atlantaballet. We arranged to meet at the High Museum in Atlanta, Georgia (on a very cold day in November) for a photo shoot and interview.

Meredith: Was this year the first time you won at the YAGP?

Nadyne: No, last year I won a contract with Boston Ballet.

Meredith: Did you like Boston?

Nadyne: It’s a beautiful city, but it’s so cold. So, here in Atlanta it’s better. In Brazil, it’s so warm all the time. Here it’s so cold all the time. I’m freezing.

Meredith: Would you want to move to the United States permanently?

Nadyne: Yes, we cannot get money for ballet in Brazil, so we can’t survive there with ballet. You need another job.

Meredith: Is ballet popular in Brazil?

Nadyne: No, I don’t know why I started. I just started doing it and never stopped.


Meredith: Do you live with friends or people from the ballet?

Nadyne: I live with people from the ballet, but now we are friends. I live with another Brazilian girl and a Japanese girl.

Meredith: So, she came here from Japan or was she born here?

Nadyne: She’s from Japan. Sometimes when we talk, I don’t understand her, and she doesn’t understand me. My English is not very good and the same with her, so it’s funny.

I need to work forever.

Meredith: If you could pick any city, where would you like to dance?

Nadyne: I like it here - Atlanta.

Meredith: You are in Company 2 with Atlanta Ballet. How do you get into Company 1?

Nadyne: The first thing, if the Director likes me. It is so important. And I need to work because there is different technique in ballet. I studied Vaganova, but this is a different Vaganova. It is a mix of French and Russian. I need to learn this Vaganova and then I feel like it’s fine - I can join the first Company. It’s hard…When you think, “I’m good now” - no, you’re not. I need to work forever.

In Brazil, everybody is so happy all the time.

Meredith: Other than the weather, how is Atlanta different from Brazil?

Nadyne: The people are different. In Brazil, everybody is so happy all the time.

Meredith: Really?

Nadyne: Yeah, all the time. Everybody is talking, talking all the time. But here, everybody’s so quiet and not too happy.

Meredith: I wonder why that is. What about the food? How is the food different?

Nadyne: Oh, the food is so different. I make my food everyday because, honestly, I don’t like American food. I cook every day Brazilian food. Beans, rice, potato, meat.

Meredith: What types of spices do you use?

Nadyne: Oregano. Do you know oregano?

Meredith: Yes.

Nadyne: I use too much.

I use too much.

Meredith: I heard that Atlanta Ballet reinvented The Nutcracker for this season.

Nadyne: Yes, it’s totally new. I love it! It’s amazing because it’s a mix of choreography - a mix of contemporary and ballet. It’s so cool.


Go see Nadyne in The Nutcracker…or somewhere on the streets in Atlanta…

Meredith M Howard is a photographer who lives in Atlanta, Georgia.  She was inspired to start THE STREETS magazine after many conversations with strangers in downtown Atlanta.