Órla: A shining light

Maybe it was that she shared an uncommon name with a dear friend’s daughter. Maybe it was her lilting British accent. Maybe it was the sparkle in her eyes that beamed: I’m living my dream.

Whatever the reason or all of them, Órla Baxendale stood out among the several engaging and lovely dancers in MOMIX.

Several weeks after Órla and the company’s visit to Portland, I learned Órla had died suddenly and unexpectedly from exposure to nuts, a severe allergy she knew about and protected herself from every day. The cookie she ate was not properly labeled.

Órla graced the stage and life with a luminous quality that shined brightly. Her light lives on.

Aimée M. Petrin
Executive & Artistic Director