Columbus native Christine Mangia stopped dancing long enough recently to tell Alive about the two works she and the rest of BalletMet are working on for their March concerts. Currently in her ninth season with the company, Mangia can talk authoritatively about each piece, having worked with the choreographers behind both productions.

Columbus native Christine Mangia stopped dancing long enough recently to tell Alive about the two works she and the rest of BalletMet are working on for their March concerts. Currently in her ninth season with the company, Mangia can talk authoritatively about each piece, having worked with the choreographers behind both productions.

Mangia was in the cast of Dwight Rhoden's "Carmina Burana" for its October 2004 debut. In a break from rehearsals last week, Mangia was eagerly anticipating Rhoden's return.

"He will be here next week, which will be wonderful for the dancers to see him move," she said. "You can really get the intent of the movement [by] watching him do it."

Set to Carl Orff's "scenic cantata" of the same name, "Carmina Burana" opens with an indelible image: the principal female dancer wearing a red dress that flows over much of the stage.

For movement value, though, the highlight is an incredible series of duets.

"The bench duet section is definitely one of the most challenging sections," Mangia said. "I think doing intricate partnering on the floor is a challenge alone. Then add a bench that isn't very wide or long and do the same stuff on and off the bench, and diving under and over the bench - it becomes very tiring and challenging for the dancers."

Paired with the revival of "Carmina" is the world premiere of "Coming Into View" by BalletMet dancer and choreographer Jimmy Orrante, himself in his 15th season with the company.

Having danced last year as Daisy Buchanan in Orrante's "The Great Gatsby," as well as in his first choreographic work, "Touch," in 2005, Mangia admires him immensely: "He knows us so well and really gives movement that is suitable to the dancers cast in his work. He knows us as people, too, and has worked with many of us for years."

Orrante took inspiration for "Coming Into View" from the mating habits of fireflies and their parallels to human relationships, Mangia said. "How we end up with people who we meet for the first time and feel like we have known them forever ... or how some people are together and there is tension and they just cannot work it out."

For Mangia, Orrante's musicality is paramount.

"You really feel like the movement and the music are one," she said. "Not all choreographers have that. ... He has a gift and I think Columbus is very lucky to have him here sharing his gift with them."