Following an adjunct professorship choreographing at the University of Utah, she and her spouse left New York for good five years ago. "My husband had been skiing here since the '80s, when we also bought a condo," she recalls. "The community warmth made me feel at home."

Dance partner Matthew Helms is part of that community, "getting my arabesque and balance up to performance standards," Michele avers. "There are no shortcuts to meeting the demands of dancing the classics in your 40s; rehearsals are relentless. Matt's emotional support is critical."

A lifelong dancer who was boarding at Washington’s Kirov Academy of Ballet at age 10, Michele recognizes high-end spaces like the Santy and The Eccles Center as artistic magnets, including the musicians who guarantee "we always have live music at Park City productions. We've forged incredible partnerships, and I love the flood of children wanting to participate in Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake."

Raising daughter Jacey, rehearsing, traversing the hills, or enjoying coffee with friends at Hugo, Michele revels in Park City’s community spirit. “It’s the perfect place to build a world-class professional performing ballet company," she believes. "The key is to never stop!"