In a role that critics say begs the dancer to “crash and burn,” Amber Neumann shocked audiences as she broke into tears onstage during a heartfelt performance of “Infra.”
To get into character for her role in renowned choreographer ayne MacGregor’s contemporary ballet which goes behind the scenes of city life, the Niles dancer channeled a level of pain that starkly contrasts her own personality. In fact, she danced with such passion that the performance earned her a spot in Point Magazine’s Top 10 Performances of the Year.
The bubbly, constantly smiling 23-year-old with profound interests in physics and fashion said preparing for the show was “the most intense experience.”
“There’s a strange feeling of vulnerability and safety when you have to have an emotional breakdown on stage,” Amber said during a brief visit to her hometown between a show finale and leaving for a national tour. “On the one hand you’re bearing your soul to thousands of people, and on the other hand you’re on a stage, safe and far away from reality.”
Six years into a career with one of the nation’s top ballet companies in America, Amber reflects on that performance as one of the highlights.
“I don’t know that I ever feel that I’ve completely made it, because I’m still trying to work harder and make myself better every day,” she said. “[Infra] was one of the best experiences for me at the Joffrey. It’s one of my favorite ballets. I think after doing that I kind of felt — well I felt a little bit like I made it.”


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