Getting to Know Luca

Luca Sbrizzi has been dancing professionally since 2003 and joined PBT in 2007.

I started taking ballet at the age of nine, from my sister Alessia Sbrizzi. To be honest with you, when I first started studying ballet, I wasn't very focused or interested.  But everything changed when I met Pino Carbone, founder and manager of the first center in Europe of the Gyrotonic Expansion System, who offered me a scholarship to train at his school in Florence. For the next two years, my life consisted of studying ballet 5-7 hours a day and living alone in a one-bedroom apartment.  The rest of my time was spent going to high school, doing my laundry, cooking and staying up late at night to get all my homework done.

Right when I reached the point where I thought I wasn't good enough to be a professional dancer, I was offered a full scholarship to move to Boston and study with the prestigious Boston Ballet School. I was seventeen when I moved to Boston, and it was definitely the hardest thing I've ever done. When I first arrived in the US, I didn't speak a word of English and I didn't know anybody at all.  My dream was to become a professional dancer, and I never let that goal become unfocused or unclear.

During that period in my life I developed strength, determination and will power, which are to this day, my greatest qualities.  It took me about six months, the loneliest of my life, before I was able to speak to other people.  But with the support of my family, my sister especially, and my strong passion for dance, I was able to overcome every challenge I faced.  After two years in Boston Ballet School, I was offered a contract with Boston Ballet's second company, and there my adventure as a professional dancer began… my dream had become a reality!

Hometown: Udine, Italy  

Number of years as a dancer: This is my 9th year as a professional dancer.

Favorite role: Romeo in Romeo and Juliet is my dream role. The favorite role I danced thus far is without a doubt Frederick in Ben Stevenson's Dracula. I will carry this role in my heart forever, because it was the first time I danced the lead character in a full length ballet. Performing this ballet gave me the opportunity to grow, both artistically and technically. The part has love, humor and drama. It's complete and really fun to perform, especially with an awesome partner like Christine Schwaner.

Greatest influence: My sister Alessia and my teacher and mentor Pino Carbone! I would never be where I am right now, without their endless help and support.

Favorite thing about dance: When I am on stage nothing else matters. Sometimes I get in this trance state in which pain goes away, worries go away.  The mind is clear and all that matters is giving the very best performance I can.  It’s really a unique sensation that only a dancer can truly understand.

Least favorite thing about dance: Injuries!!! Due to the extreme way we are required to use our bodies, it is inevitable that sometimes the injury occurs.  It is a very frustrating and upsetting time in a life of a dancer because we are deprived of what we love the most.... to dance!

Favorite television shows: Modern Family, Community, The Office, Parks and Recreation, Mad Men

Favorite food: Pizza and anything cheesy...

Other interests besides ballet: Soccer, swimming, hiking, working out

Future plans: I'm currently in school to became a massage therapist. As a dancer, I know how important it is for dancers to receive bodywork.  I have experienced firsthand what a difference a good massage can make.  I would love to be able to be that person that makes people feel better.  My ultimate goal is to work with all athletes.

Advice to students: Follow your dream and do everything in your power to achieve it.

Family: I have an amazing family that loves me and supports me so much. They all live in Italy so I don’t see them nearly as much as I would like to.  It is a blast when we are all together!

Favorite spot or hangout in Pittsburgh: My awesome porch!

Favorite restaurant in Pittsburgh: Piccolo Forno in Lawrenceville

Favorite vacation: Either my hometown in Italy or my fiancee’s hometown in the Bay area in Northern California.

Finish this statement, “People may be surprised to know that…” Me and my fiancee Jenna just bought a house in Stanton Heights and that we are getting married in June of 2013.