BWW Feature: The Art Of Ballet with Ballet Idaho
Ballet Idaho has been serving the Treasure Valley community since 1972. Currently, this staff of 24 dancers, a professional teaching staff of 18, production staff of three, and administrative staff of 12 have teamed together with up to 40 members of the Boise Philharmonic and two pianists to bring their audience an exciting new season. As the only professional ballet company in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming, Ballet Idaho brings forward important artistic opportunities and experiences that enrich the Idaho community in ways that cannot be repeated by other genres of art and entertainment.
A new director was recently appointed. He brings with him a vision and desire to shape and form ballet in new ways. His goal is to have shows we all know and love, but add in new voices. To move toward accomplishing this goal, ten new guest choreographers will be coming in for short, one or two weeks sessions. In the 2018-2019 season, over 24,000 audience members were served and 15,000 students were served thanks to the season and community. I was lucky enough to meet with Alanna Love one of the wonderful members of the staff for Ballet Idaho. We discussed everything from the upcoming season to community outreach. Ms. Love believes the appreciation for ballet and Ballet Idaho will continue to grow as quickly as the Treasure Valley's population. People who come into the City of Trees are amazed by what they see on the stage and want to help as much as possible to continue enriching this art form.
Everything about this season is insane, it's a passionate and visionary work doing it's best to help a community understand a bit better. From the costumes to the dances, and dancers, it is intense. With ballet, there's a beauty to learning how to understand the human narrative. So many people believe for a performance to make sense it needs words, but human movement can be just as powerful and multidimensional in understanding what is to come. With words you can be trapped with a limit on what to say, ballet breaks this wall and frees from this.
Volunteer experiences are always open. Reach out to those in the center to find ways to come and help, see the shows, promote performances, promote all sources of material. If you reach out via email or phone, there's always room for you to see these dancers perform.
Ballet Idaho, Boise's only professional ballet company is starting their new season with "Anthology" from November 1st through the 3rd. Anthology is six short pieces ranging from classical to contemporary. From love and harmony to angst and conflict. Robyn Mineko Williams whose piece was excerpted in last year's show will create a world premiere for the company. In addition to this other choreographers will be showcased such as Penny Saunders and Nathan Powells.
The Nutcracker comes to the Morrison Center from December 19th through the 23rd. Just in time for Christmas to truly shine during this season. New sets, new costumes and new excerpts of choreography will be premiered during this amazing showcase of brilliant, bright and jaw-dropping talent. One Hundred kids from the Ballet Idaho Academy will be gracing the stage as well.
Newdance: Inside View is next from February 6th through the 9th. This is a collection of pieces created by dancers and artistic staff. 23 dancers, a black wall, a few lights, and 200 seats. This is all it takes to make this production shine and sparkle.
Following is Light /Dark. For two nights only you can see this incredible show on March 13th and 14th. A mix of contemporary and classical pieces mixed in Light / Dark has something in store for everyone who comes to see these talented dancers.
To wrap up the season is Beauty and the Beast with Carnival of the Animals. A timeless classic is mixed with a world premiere. The beloved fairytale , mixed with 1960's twist about animal caricatures at a family dinner. This season truly has something in store for everyone. Truly, the audience will be blown away. In the words of Alanna, "ballet is a lifeform and an experience. It's not just pretty girls in tutus, there's something in store for everyone. Don't assume you know ballet. Come and experience it for yourself." Her advice for anyone wanting to take part? "While you're focusing on the steps, on the dancing, and getting it perfectly, remember why you're doing it. The audience sees a lack of passion, they won't care if you miss a step.
Thank you to Alanna for meeting with me and discussing all this season has in store.