Learn more about the love stories fueling the passion behind the scenes of Eternal Desire

A Q&A with Grand Rapids Ballet’s Marketing Coordinator, Julie Lesniak

eternal desire grand rapids ballet love stories

Paul Vasterling’s Dracula photo by Karyn Kipley courtesy Nashville Ballet

In the spirit of Eternal Desire, our Valentine’s Day weekend program, we are sharing the love stories of some of your favorite Company dancers. Today we feature Alexandra Meister-Upleger who joined us in 2018 and her husband, Jon Upleger, who has been a Company dancer with Nashville Ballet since 2000.

Q: Alex, thank you for sitting down with us. How did you and Jon meet?

A: Of course. This is a fun idea; I’m happy to help. We met dancing together at Nashville Ballet. As silly as this sounds, I remember we used to flirt during The Nutcracker party scene rehearsals. A week after the performance, we went on a date, and now we’re married.

Q: What is your favorite part about being with Jon?

A: There is so much I love about being with Jon but one thing that particularly stands out is how much he cares that we actively communicate about how to maintain a strong and healthy relationship.

eternal desire grand rapids ballet love stories

Photo by Anthony Matula

Q: What does love look like to you in one word or sentence?

A: “Sacrifice.”

Q: You’ve dated and married a dancer. What’s the best part of that relationship and what’s the most challenging?

A: The best part is we share the same passion. We can always “talk shop” and have really wonderful discussions about our art form. He also understands this career and was supportive when I needed to make a change and move to a different Company. Consequently, the worst part is spending most of our marriage in different cities, but it certainly makes Jon and me cherish the time we do have together even more.

Q: Do you have #couplegoals?

A: Ha! I love that question.Our long term goal is definitely to start a family one day; we can’t wait to have children. Our short term goal is to stick to our budget. You know: the fun adult stuff (laughs).

See Alexandra and the rest of your favorite Grand Rapids Ballet dancers in Eternal Desire, February 14-16 & 21 at Peter Martin Wege Theatre. Tickets are on sale now on Ticketmaster, our website, at our box office at 341 Ellsworth Avenue SW, or by calling 616.454.4771 x10 today. 

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