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Best Dancer 

Deanna Heitt

Subjectivity has its place, especially when it comes to dance, an art form often pigeonholed. How can one dancer be the best when you're comparing ballet dancers with flamenco dancers? Impossible! What about the tango dancers, the country dancers, the square dancers, the two-steppers? Deanna Heitt makes it relatively easy. Not because of the talent pool that surrounds her -- which is formidable -- but because of the frequency with which she is borrowed by dance companies around town to enhance their performances. Though Heitt works for Wylliams/Henry Danse Theatre -- specializing in the taut musicality of lyrical contemporary dance -- she is brought in to perform with the Kansas City Ballet. And she doesn't just dance with the Kansas City Ballet; she snatches the solo roles! Not to dismiss the skills of the company members, but it is immediately clear that the lithe, energetic and abundantly passionate dancer is needed for her uncommon physical and emotional abandon. Heitt plunges in and shows us how it's done, hitting her poses with remarkable gusto and precision, making her pointed feet daggers that prompt audience members to flinch in terror and awe.

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