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Tanya Rivero Emcees “Balanchine Ball”

- July 26, 2013 |

Before she became an ABC morning host and late-night news anchor, IF client Tanya Rivero worked tirelessly as a child and teenager to realize her dream of dancing with the New York City Ballet.

This past Saturday, the jack-of-all-trades journalist (and mother of two) ventured to Boston to host the “Balanchine Ball.” This year, the organization raised $2.5 million towards the Boston Ballet’s coffers, the most in the event’s history.

We recently caught up with Rivero to discuss her efforts giving back to the community, her love of ballet, and the non-stop world of journalism.

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How was your experience at the event, and how was it to emcee?

TR: It was a lot of fun, and it was especially enjoyable to do something nice for Boston in the wake of the tragedy there. The event organizers reached out to me because I used to dance professionally, and I felt very honored to emcee the event. It was a great time.

Why did you decide to help out?

TR: Anytime I can help with a cause I believe in, I’m happy to do it. And this one was special to me, so it was really a no-brainer. I’ve done things like this before—I recently spoke at an event for New Yorkers for Children, which supports the child welfare community and also children in foster care—and I’ll continue to seek opportunities to help out whenever I can.

Do you still practice ballet?

TR: I try, but it’s tough because my schedule is pretty full right now [laughs]. I’d love to take a ballet class when I can, and I still go to shows—I’m actually going to a show next week. I’m also still involved with the School of American Ballet, where I used to train, as I’ve joined the circle of donors to raise money for student scholarships. I have a lot of friends in that world for sure.

What was the transition like going from dancing to broadcasting? Are there any similarities?

TR: I think a couple of things overlap: Number one, as a dancer, you’re already very disciplined and work very hard. Dancers work long—and strange—hours, and journalists do too. In the news world, you have to work weekends and evenings, so my background in ballet made that part second nature for me.

Also, I think in journalism it definitely helps to have a background as a performer, so when you’re on camera you aren’t nervous being in front of people. Those are the main areas: dedication, long hours, strange schedules and being comfortable getting up in front of people. All of that has definitely helped my transition.
If you’re interested in more of Tanya’s work or the intersection of journalism and ballet, you can check out her interview with longtime American Ballet principle dancer, Irina Dvorovenko, here: http://yhoo.it/18r1auf