What’s New

Kickstart our Tutus & Technology Project!

In its mission to Brooklyn-ize The Nutcracker, a holiday classic, Brooklyn Ballet brings in street and modern dancers, infuses African dance styles and sets its multicultural, intergenerational cast on Flatbush Avenue. Building The Brooklyn Nutcracker in installments allows Lynn Parkerson to explore new innovations and collaborate with new artistic partners during Brooklyn Ballet's home performance season.

This season's focus is the iconic Snow scene and Drosselmeyer 1.0, and the talented collaborators are popping artist Mike “Supreme” Fields, costume designers YMX by Yellowman and Nick Vermeer and Bill Ward of hacker collective NYC Resistor. In a true wonderland of possibilities, the collaborators have worked together to dream and design a techno tutu, a motion sensor skirt that mimics the pattern of falling snow with LED lights as each performer dances through the scene. 

We need your help to raise $10,000 for the construction and realization of these amazing costumes! Donate what you can today - we need everyone to pitch in to make our goal, and we're counting on you!!

Thanks for all that you do for Brooklyn Ballet!

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Meet the Company: New Brooklyn Ballet Dancer Paunika Jones

Name: Paunika Jones
Age: 35
Neighborhood you live in: Washington Heights

 

Q: Where did you start your dance training? Tell me a bit more about your background in ballet.

A: I began at the age of 2 with basic fundamentals of movement and expression: What is up, down, left, right. Display what is happy, sad and things like how to be a butterfly and what color would my wings be.

Q: How did you learn about Brooklyn Ballet? And what attracted you to audition for the company?

A: I have had a few friends who have worked with Brooklyn Ballet over the years. I also breezed through sometime ago, in the Nutcracker with a friend. I was interested in Brooklyn Ballet because of the Company's diversity not only in terms of race, but artistically as well.

Q: Why is ballet/dance important to you?

A: It has always been something I not only feel very passionate about, but I find it is a very powerful vehicle of expression and communication. Which, I believe is highly important, it does not matter what the subject or walk of life! Ballet and dance is part of my every being and has been for so long. To not do it, would be to not live.

Q: What is your favorite activity outside of dance?

A: I find it hard to pick just one activity. I enjoy swimming, Gyrokinesis, writing and laughing as much as possible.

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Meet the Company: New Brooklyn Ballet Dancer Elisabet Rubio

Brooklyn Ballet loves broadening the work of the Company with new dancers with new strengths and experiences each season. We enjoy getting to know our newest recruits in rehearsals, and we thought you'd like an introduction to them, too.

Stay tuned for a series of introductions to our newest faces that will grace the stage this April!

Name: Elisabet Rubio
Age: 20
Neighborhood: Inwood, Manhattan

Q: Tell me a bit more about your background in ballet.
A: I started my dance training in Havana, Cuba where I graduated from The Cuban National Ballet School. I have interpreted different artistic roles within the classic repertoire and worked with other Cuban and foreign choreographers.

I was part of the cast of Ballet Laura Alonso (Center of Pro Dance of Cuba) where I developed as a professional ballerina and interpreted roles in Dracula, The Nutcrackers, Les Sylphides and Yarini.

During the Cuballet of Summer 2012, I took part in Sleeping Beauty, and right now I am a student at The Ballet Hispanico School of Dance.

Q: How did you learn about Brooklyn Ballet? And what attracted you to audition for the company?
A: I heard about the Brooklyn Ballet from Caridad Martinez, former Brooklyn Ballet Conservatory director. It was a great opportunity to do what I love the most - DANCE!

Q: Which of the dances for this season's performances are you most excited about? Why?
A: Snow is one of my favorite dances this season because of the new version that incorporates very original attire - motion sensor tutus.

Q: Why is ballet/dance important to you?
A: When I dance I have my own style. I feel different, I can be who I am. When I dance all my problems and worries go away. Dance is my passion and a great sensation. Dance is my life!

Q: Where's your favorite place to hang out in Brooklyn?
A: The Brooklyn Bridge

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Brooklyn Ballet announces 2014 Performance Season: Vectors, Marys, and Snow

Brooklyn Ballet 2014 Season: Vectors, Marys, and Snow An eclectic mix of dance, live music and collaboration

April 3, 4, 5, 11 & 12 at 8pm
April 6 & 13 at 4pm
at The Actors Fund Arts Center

Brooklyn Ballet has much in store for its 2014 performance season at home in The Actors Fund Arts Center, April 3-6 & 11-13. A special opening night reception before the show, free beer Fridays where your first drink's on us, and children's matinees each Sunday to introduce our youngest audience members to this year's explorations in ballet and choreography. 

Founding Artistic Director & Choreographer Lynn Parkerson, along with Resident Choreographer Julia K. Gleich, present new works, improvisational scores, and the latest excerpt from the in-progress Brooklyn Nutcracker - motion-sensored tutus, here we come! 

Exciting collaborations with the returning NYC Resistor hacker collective and YMX by Yellowman will provide new technological elements to the Nutcracker snow scene you know and love, and we have a full crew of talented musicians on hand to perform live music each performance.

 

“Quilt” Work In Progress - Brooklyn Ballet 2013.03 - 02 from Brooklyn Ballet on Vimeo.

Dancers will team up with a different musician each show to perform Quilt/One Night Stand to new music. Musicians include Julius Abrahams, Shelley Hirsch, Andrei Matorin, Baba Israel, Andrew Drury, Russ Lossing, Jen Baker, and Ranjit Bhatnagar.

The program also includes 3 Marys by Lynn Parkerson set to music by Nicola Matteis (b.1650) performed live by Julius Abrahams, Jude Ziliak and Wen Yang. Resident Choreographer Julia K. Gleich presents The Solitude, to music by Malcolm Parson played on viola by Josh Henderson.

Stay tuned for introductions to our newest members the company, videos and photos from rehearsals, and more announcements about our upcoming events! 

Can't make it to our theater performances? See us perform some of this season's works at St. Francis College on April 14 at 12:30pm.

Photo: Lois Greenfield

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Meet the Company: New Brooklyn Ballet Dancer Oshi Wanigasekera

Name: Oshini Wanigasekera
Age: 26
Neighborhood: Woodside, NY

Q: Where did you start your dance training? 
A: School of Alberta Ballet in Canada

Q: How did you learn about Brooklyn Ballet? And what attracted you to audition for the company?
A: Several of my friends danced for Brooklyn Ballet and I loved hearing about what they were performing.

Q: Which of the dances for this season's performances are you most excited about? Why?
A: I love structured improvisation, and Quilt/One Night Stand is great to just let that all out.

Q: Why is ballet/dance important to you?
A: I'm a really quiet person. Dance is my way of talking. The ballet world is something of a bubble with few people of minority. Since ballet is something that I love, I think it's important to carve a new image of the ballerina.

Q: What is your favorite activity outside of dance?
A: Painting

Q: Where's your favorite place to hang out in Brooklyn?
A: Greenpoint
  

Photo by Rachel Neville 

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Thank You For Celebrating Elevate @ 10! and Supporting Dance Education in Public Schools

Last week we celebrated 10 years of working with students in Brooklyn's public schools. Elevate @ 10!, a fundraiser for Brooklyn Ballet's Scholarship Fund, included two special performances for excited parents, fans and dance aficionados. Thanks to all who attended for celebrating with us! We're so grateful to those who gave generously to our Elevate Scholarship Fund.

Elevate @ 10! was electric - just super fun! John Michael Abenanty and Naazir and Shaakir Muhammad's reprisal of Caridad Martinez's “3 Toreros,” a trio they originally performed in 2007, was one of the celebration's many highlights. What a treat to see firsthand how much these young men have grown in their technique and performance. All the dances performed by our Elevate All-Stars, Company, Youth Ensemble and dance school students were phenomenal. They blew us all away!

After the amazing performances we had a delicious feast of pumpkin vegetable soup, jerk chicken, and rice & peas catered by the amazingFisherman's Dawta (407 Atlantic Ave). To work it all off, we danced to terrific reggae, hip hop, latin, disco and R&B tunes in the studio. It was a true celebration of the positive impact that dance can have.

Conservatory student M'Shiari Gonzales dancing it up with her dad

The event honored Corcoran Cares for their long-time support of Brooklyn Ballet's education programs, with a gift of appreciation presented by Artistic Director Lynn Parkerson and Board Chair Geri Armine-Klein.


Geri Armine-Klein with Lynn on stage at Saturday's performance

Liz Koch, Arts & Culture Specialist at the Brooklyn Borough President's Office, attended the Elevate @ 10! celebration and made the announcement that the Borough President, Marty Markowitz, had proclaimed Saturday, June 8, as Brooklyn Ballet Hall of Fame Day!

John Michael Abenanty inducted into the Brooklyn Ballet Hall of Fame

We couldn't be happier to announce that our first inductee is John Michael Abenanty! John Michael got his start in our Elevate program at PS 207, trained at Brooklyn Ballet and has now completed his pre-professional training at the prestigious Harid Conservatory in Florida. He just signed his first professional contract with Columbia Classical Ballet in South Carolina and was one of 20 students chosen internationally to participate in the highly competitive and renowned Ballet program at the School at Jacob's Pillow.


Naazir Muhammad with his All-Star medallion

  

We know John Michael is the first of many who will enter the professional ballet world with roots planted firmly in Brooklyn. And we honored seven more of our promising Elevate All-Stars that evening for their hard earned achievements, too! Thank you for helping us reach our $5,000 Kickstarter goal that made these All-Star shows a reality, so we could honor these young dancers.


Elevate and Brooklyn Ballet School instructor Meagan Brunke dancing with conservatory students after the performance

  

We're on our way to reaching our target of $30,000 in order to maintain our Elevate Scholarship program. We have $15,000 in contributions to the Fund so far - please continue to help us spread the word about our terrific public school program and the great benefit a scholarship provides for a young dancer.


Elevate Education Director Catherine Green with Elevate student Olivia Jervise (PS
 312)

“Elevate certainly brings ballet to thousands of children who would not otherwise have access and among this wide pool of Brooklyn children there are those with extreme, even stunning aptitude for ballet. Without Elevate scholarships, these children would very likely never consider ballet. The program opens doors.”
-Elevate Education Director Catherine Green

Roxana Vadia, Company Dancer J-Floats & All-Star Daniel Falkin 

It's been truly inspiring to work with these supremely talented young dancers, watching them move from discovery in the classroom, to professional performance experiences.

Thanks to your support of Brooklyn Ballet, we'll can continue to discover and educate many more talented and driven young artists budding in Brooklyn's Public Schools. We can't wait to meet them!

Elevate All-Stars: Naazir & Shaakir Muhammad

“When I'm dancing, I feel as if I can express myself without being judged. I can dance the way I'm feeling.”
-Naazir Muhammad

“Lynn discovered us.”
-Shaakir Muhammad

Brooklyn Ballet- Naazir & Shaakir Muhammad from Ben Holbrook on Vimeo.

It wasn't love at first sight for Elevate All-Star Naazir… Before he saw the men's variations at Brooklyn Ballet's grade school performance, Naazir wasn't convinced he would want to get involved in dance. Once the men were jumping, turning and lifting the women, he was impressed and wanted to try it for himself.

Naazir and Shaakir trained at Brooklyn Ballet School on  scholarship and danced in our Youth Ensemble for six years before joining American Ballet Theatre's pre-professional program at JKO School. Now Naazir and Shaakir are looking forward to a long career on stage, working hard for their dream of principal roles in New York City or beyond.

Join us on June 5th for a performance by all of our Elevate All-Stars and a Jamaican dinner by Fisherman's Dawta. Brooklyn Ballet dance party to follow!

Or help us celebrate our 10th anniversary with a gift to support these young dancers!

We still need to raise $2,273 for our June performances! Any size donation brings us closer to our goal, so visit our Kickstarter and donate what you can today!

And don't forget to share our campaign on Facebook, Twitter and forward this email. Let's spread the word about Elevate!

 

Elevate All-Star Amber: Now at Ballet Hispanico

“I love ballet, because I love expressing how I feel. When I do dance movements, I feel like I can show how happy I am doing this.”
-Amber Holland

Amber still remembers the joy she felt when she received a letter asking her to start taking classes at Brooklyn Ballet on scholarship. Now Amber's 11 years old and training six days a week in Ballet Hispanico's pre-professional program. 

Help us celebrate our 10th anniversary with a gift to support these young dancers!

 

We still need to raise $3,678 for our June performances! Any size donation brings us closer to our goal, so visit our Kickstarter and donate what you can.

And don't forget to share our campaign on Facebook, Twitter and forward this email. Let's spread the word about Elevate!

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Elevate All-Star Bhajhan: Now at American Ballet Theatre's JKO School

“Everyone tells me how much I've grown, how much I've improved. When I go on to bigger and better things, I'm representing Brooklyn, and I'm proud to represent it.”
-Bhajhan, former Elevate and Brooklyn Ballet student

Bhajhan, now 13 years old, came back to the studio to talk about his first time taking class during a Brooklyn Ballet Elevate performance at his elementary school. He now dances at American Ballet Theatre's JKO School, has performed in ABT's The Nutcracker at the Brooklyn Academy of Music and can't thank us enough for getting him started in ballet.

Buy Tickets

See Bhajhan perform alongside other Elevate All-Stars, June 5 & 8.

Special thanks to filmmaker & editor Ben Holbrook

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Elevate All-Star John Michael: From Brooklyn Ballet to Harid Conservatory

Our Elevate All-Stars

Brooklyn Ballet can't wait for John Michael Abenanty to come back to the studio and perform with fellow Elevate alums on June 5 & 8. The talented 17-year-old ballet dancer took some time out of his busy six-day-a-week ballet schedule to answer a few questions about his beginnings in ballet in Brooklyn Ballet's Elevate program and what he's up to now at The Harid Conservatory in Florida:

When did you first see ballet?
I first saw ballet at my public school (PS 207) when Brooklyn Ballet was just starting their Elevate program. I was eight years old, I believe, and I was accepted into the first Elevate scholarship class.

What did you think of ballet the first time you saw it?
I instantly fell in love with the movement right away but mostly the turns! As a little boy, it was my dream to do pirouettes on stage and eventually become a professional dancer at American Ballet Theatre. I still hold onto that dream and am driven to achieve it.

John Michael Abenanty

When did you first take a ballet class? What was that like?
I first took ballet class on my public school's stage with Brooklyn Ballet - that’s when I met my first teacher Justin Bates, who is the main reason why I started ballet. He helped me express how enjoyable dancing is and showed me that with the right drive you can achieve anything.

Why do you love to dance?
I love to dance because the level of virtuosity is extremely high and difficult to achieve.

How do you feel when you're dancing?
I feel as if I am flying. The electricity is incredible. However, when I’m training the exhaustion, focus and pressure can be difficult to handle. That is another reason why I love ballet - I love a challenge!

Buy Tickets

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Brooklyn Ballet Brings Back 'Brooklyn's 3 Billys' in Elevate All Star Performance, June 5 & 8, 2013

The Boys Are Back

Brooklyn Ballet welcomes back some of the dance world’s budding stars during a celebratory performance by young alum who came to ballet through Brooklyn Ballet's Elevate program for public schools.

Boys in Ballet: Naazir, Shaakir & John Michael

Naazir and Shaakir Muhammad & John Michael Abenanty
formerly of Brooklyn Ballet; photo by Raw Material Photography

Join us at The Actors Fund Arts Center!
Wednesday, June 5, 7pm
Saturday, June 8, 2pm

Buy Tickets

Brooklyn Ballet Company, Youth Ensemble and students from the School will also perform.

All Grown Up

We'll be sharing a new interview each week to introduce you to our Elevate All Stars, five dancers who were discovered, recruited and trained by Brooklyn Ballet before acceptance to prestigious pre-professional ballet programs across the country - here in New York at American Ballet Theatre's JKO School and Ballet Hispanico and in Florida's Harid Conservatory.

But first, a flashback to 2007, when All Stars John Michael (PS 207 Marine Park) and Naazir & Shaakir (PS 251 Flatlands), performed “3 Toreros” choreographed by Caridad Martinez. 

Just wait til you see how these boys can move now!

About Elevate

Brooklyn Ballet has reached more than 11,000 children in eight of Brooklyn's public schools through Elevate, its innovative educational program that infuses ballet training in school curriculum.

Support Elevate today by joining us at our benefit performance June 5! 

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Thank You for Supporting Brooklyn Ballet's 2013 Season Performances

photo by William Ward
Thank you from all of us at Brooklyn Ballet!

Brooklyn Ballet's 2013 season In 4D was a great success! We wish to extend tremendous thanks to our incredible dancers, esteemed collaborators, wonderful production crew, and our amazing supporters! We are so grateful for the support.

In case you missed our remarkable press or weren't able to attend a performance, click on these links to learn more about the show.

Read all about it:
The Dance Enthusiast
DNA Info/NY Neighborhood News
Norte Maar
Brooklyn Daily/Go Brooklyn

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Brooklyn Ballet In 4D: Opening Weekend of the 2013 Season

Brooklyn Ballet opened the 2013 Season: In 4D to excited audiences last weekend and looks forward to three more performances this Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Buy your tickets now to see new choreography by Artistic Director Lynn Parkerson and collaborators Julia K. Gleich and Mike “Supreme” Fields, with brilliant design and music by NYC ResistorGil Morgenstern and Julius Abrahams.

Special thanks to Bill Ward for catching these striking moments on camera in dress rehearsals last week!
 

Brooklyn Ballet in rehearsal with Gil Morgenstern

Brooklyn Ballet is absolutely ecstatic to be performing with the fabulousGil Morgenstern again this year. A superb violinist and director of Reflections Series International, Gil has collaborated with Lynn Parkerson on all our season performances in the Actors Fund Arts Center. Lynn and Gil believe live music truly invigorates dance in performance, and our audiences have wholeheartedly agreed.

The musician extraordinaire took a few moments to answer some of our questions about his musical choices for this season’s new mixed movement work-in-progress, Quilt. And we stealthily filmed some of last week’s rehearsal to give you a peek and a listen at how the dance is shaping up.

Join us this week for the opening of our 2013 season!

 

Q: When were you first introduced to dance? And to Brooklyn Ballet?
A: I guess I was first introduced to dance in a “formal” way when I was a student at Juilliard, and I had a few friends in the New York City Ballet. I was privileged to attend quite a few performances and even snuck backstage sometimes, although thankfully, Mr. B never found out. Over the years my interest in dance grew to the point where I formed a small experimental company with the wonderful Paul Taylor dancer Mary Cochran.

I met Lynn about 10 or 12 years ago when she contacted me at the suggestion of a mutual friend at the 92nd Street Y. Lynn invited me to perform a work of hers with her company and we've been friends and collaborators ever since.

Q: What captured your attention about the art form? 
A: Well I suppose most people are fascinated about art forms they know they could just never do themselves…

Q: The music for Quilt includes works by composers Johann Sebastian Bach and Vytautas Barkauskas. Lynn says the Bach & Barkauskas selections are fascinatingly similar. Can you tell us more about Bach's influence on the contemporary composer?
A: Bach's Six Sonatas and Partitas are really the gold standard of solo instrumental writing; no composer since can write for solo violin without looking over his or her shoulder back to Bach. The Barkauskas work is a clear homage to Bach: the work is titled Partita and the movements all have Baroque names. Additionally, as in Bach's Partitas, Barkauskas incorporates contemporary dance forms into his music.

Q: What do you hope to illuminate by placing these pieces of music side-by-side?
A: Although all these pieces are written with different musical vocabularies, I think they fit in perfectly with Lynn's vision for Brooklyn Ballet, including the reinterpretation of traditions in a contemporary setting and the combination of seemingly unrelated works.

Q: Brooklyn Ballet's audiences love the inclusion of live music in our performances. Why do you think live music changes the way people view choreography? 
A: I believe the audience begins to better understand the relationship between music and dance. In a way, it focuses their attention on the music through live performance; something recorded music obviously cannot achieve.

Opening night is this THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 28! Purchase tickets for our two week performance season here.

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Brooklyn Ballet Rehearsing "Spiders, Cooks & Mood Swings"

Spiders, Cooks and Mood Swings was presented during Brooklyn Ballet's 10th anniversary season last year as a work-in-progress. This year our hip hop, modern and ballet dancers all slip back into their characters to present the world premiere. It's great to see everyone back in rehearsal for this dance - such a large and energetic cast!

 

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Meet the Company: New Brooklyn Ballet Dancer Duane Gosa

Brooklyn Ballet welcomed several new company members this year. It's been a blast learning about them in rehearsal—who they are, how they move, why they dance and more. We thought our readers would like a chance to get to know them, too.

Name: Duane Gosa
Age: 27
Neighborhood: Bushwick/Bed Stuy

Q: Where did you start your dance training?
A: I started dance at a performing arts program that was offered to upperclassmen at my high school in Ohio. After graduating, I continued to study ballet more intensely at the University of Akron.

Q: How did you learn about Brooklyn Ballet? And what attracted you to audition for the company?
A: I first heard of BB through a fellow dancer in the company. We had partnered together for a contemporary Nutcracker and she encouraged me to audition for a project that was happening last fall. I was mostly attracted to the blend of classical technique with more contemporary styles of moving. Recently, I've worked more with contemporary movement so I appreciate and am excited for the chance to fiercely reinvestigate ballet technique on my body.

Q: What do you find most challenging about rehearsals so far?
A: To be honest, it's wearing ballet slippers for so long. While I understand that I am not nearly as distressed regarding footwear in comparison to the women on pointe, I haven't worn ballet shoes this much since my school days. It's great! I am happy for the challenge, and I can feel my feet getting much stronger.

Duane partnering Gabriela in rehearsal for BB's “Tracing Back”

Q: Which of the dances for this season's performances are you most excited about?
A: I'm most excited about Tracing Back. I think the production of this piece will be particularly interesting. There will be an added component that uses live video of the choreography and reconfigures the moving image into a digital illustration that will be projected during the piece. This added dimension is a cool and exciting way to look at the idea of technology-enhanced performance.

Q: Why is ballet/dance important to you?
A: Because it feels great! I have been physically active my whole life. I was an athlete and a musician while growing up so when I discovered dance it seemed to fit perfectly on my body. It's the closest way I can get to actually becoming the music.

Q: What is your favorite activity outside of dance?
A: Music has always been a major interest of mine. I've studied music for many years, so listening to music is my favorite pastime. I love finding new music, especially old music that's new to me. 

Right now I'm listening to a lot of classic R&B/Soul music and Indie Electronic. The artists I play most on repeat are the band Them, Sam Cooke, Electric Guest and Azealia Banks.

Q: Where's your favorite place to hang out in Brooklyn?
A: It really depends on the time of year. Currently, my favorite place to be is warm in my home, but when the weather is fair DUMBO is a very beautiful place to hang out. The Brooklyn Bridge Park is definitely my spot in summer.

Rehearsing Brooklyn Ballet's New Digital Collaboration: "Tracing Back"

Rehearsals with our ballet dancers for “Tracing Back” have started in earnest. Last week, Gabriela Galvez Espana, Duane Gosa, Miku Kawamura, Kerry Shea & Vincent Marra took a break from moving to watch a video of choreography Artistic Director Lynn Parkerson is referencing to create this new digitally-enhanced ballet.

New company member Gabriela Galvez Espana dances as Duane Gosa and Miku Kawamura look on

As the dancers learn some moves from the existing work in Brooklyn Ballet's repertory, Lynn has the luxury to focus less on the steps and more on the stylistic choices the dancers will make, as well as the spatial patterns that will ultimately become the work's scenery.

Artistic Director Lynn Parkerson

Lynn Parkerson demonstrates for the dancers

NYC Resistors, a Brooklyn-based hacking collective with a love of ballet, will set up a camera and work with the theatre to track the motion of our dancers. They'll create a scenic backdrop reflecting floor patterns of the ballet dancers and integrate them into the piece as a kind of technological visual art to enhance the choreography.

Vincent in rehearsal

Lynn looks on at dancers Vincent Marra and Gabriela

All of us are intrigued by how this concept of charting and tracking the ballet dancers in space will become visual art on its own. While watching rehearsal, you can imagine the energy of the patterns. A scatterplot of dancers on the floor, slowly waking into movement before returning to low, crouched or seated positions. A duet that moves back and forth in a horizontal line upstage. Criss-crossed paths punctuated by large jumps. A central cluster of bodies characterized by calm, elegant motion, one dancer at a time.

How will that translate through technology?

Lynn directs dancers in rehearsal

Lynn directs Duane & Gabriela

But for now, in this stage of our preparation for our 2013 season, the focus lies on the technique and performance of the dancers. Lynn instructs Duane and Gabriela on their partnering, holding Gabriela's waist - “Really make sure she's secure here” - she directs.

DNA New York attended rehearsal last week and created a great video about our project. 

Read more from DNA info here.

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Brooklyn Ballet Announces 2013 Performance Season: In 4D

Company Uses Digital Technology to Reveal Intricacies of Ballet Choreography

We're back in the studio!

Dancers are rehearsing five times a week for our upcoming season, and we couldn't be more excited about our shows next month. So thrilled, we want to share our process with you this year - continue to tune into our blog for tidbits from rehearsal, interviews with our dancers and collaborators, video, photos & more.

The curtain goes up on Brooklyn Ballet's 2013 season, In 4Don February 28. The Company will perform three exciting works, two of which are new additions to our repertory. This year's concert includes a cutting edge collaboration with NYC Resistors - hackers, digital artists, and yes, balletomanes, based in Brooklyn. Artistic Director Lynn Parkerson is working with the Resistors on Tracing Back, a dance enhanced by the digital collection and display of spatial patterns in the work.

Tracing Back reveals an aspect of choreography an audience does not usually see: the floor pathways of the dancers as they travel in real time,” Lynn says. “I've been thinking about this idea for years and when I recently stumbled upon a world of techno/digital artists who are passionate about creating something new with ballet, it just fit.”

Also new to our loyal audiences will be work-in-progress, Quilt, a new ballet/street dance mash-up created by Lynn and London-based choreographer Julia K. Gleich. The duet pairs the sinuously sweet Kerry Shea with our master of smooth, J-Floats. Based on Julia's mathmatically-inclined experiments with dancers at The Laban Institute (more on that later!), we're discovering new ways of initiating movement in ballet, pop-and-lock and more. It's sure to be a surprising and fresh way to create new connections in both of these distinct dance worlds.

You may remember our Stravinsky work-in-progress Spiders, Cooks and Mood Swings from last season… Well, it's back, and this time polished as a world premiere. This mixed movement mash-up connects 19th and 21st century aesthetics, updating the story-ballet village antics of classical ballet with a crew of contemporary characters.

“Spiders, Cooks and Moodswings” performed in 2012

Music lovers will be excited to hear that violinist Gil Morgenstern and pianist Julius Abrahams will return for our February-March dance performances. Gil will even join us on stage for Quilt, so you can look forward to watching him make magic with Bach and Barkauskas. Costume designers YMX by Yellowman and Patricia Forelle are back to make us look fabulous. And Mike “Supreme” Fields has his hand in helping shape the street dance portions of our mixed movement works.

We're just thrilled to be back in creation mode. And we hope you'll join us for more sneak peeks into the making of our 2013 performance season at The Actors Fund Arts Center. We love our Downtown Brooklyn space, and we're excited to open our doors to you!

Tickets are on sale now. Check out our calendar!

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CounterPointe Performance: A Great Success!

Norte Maar, in collaboration with Brooklyn Ballet, presented CounterPointe, a new performance series featuring emerging and established women choreographers making new work on pointe.

The series ran three nights at The Actors Fund Arts Center (160 Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn, NY), Fri, Sept 28 + Sat, Sept 29 at 7:30pm and Sun, Sept 30 at 4pm. The evening featured new works by Lynn Parkerson, Julia K. Gleich, and Marie Renee Bennett with additional showings by Eve Chan, Emily Bufferd, Susan Jaffe, and Eryn Renee Young. 

With special appearences by the Brooklyn Ballet Youth Ensemble and a Q & A discussion with prominent dance scholar Claudia Jeschke. 

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Brooklyn Ballet Students Participate ABT Summer Program

Six talented Brooklyn Ballet students were selected for American Ballet Theatre's Young Dancer Summer Workshop, which ran from July 30th to August 10th.

The participating students were Penelope Birnbaum, Bhajhan Williams, Zoreika Ollivierre, Chantel St. Fleur, Olivia Riess, and Rachel Tranter. The classes, which were held from 9:30am to 3:30pm Monday through Friday, focused on “building a solid foundation in ballet technique and educating younger dancers about related topics in the world of dance.” On August 10th at ABT Studios in Manhattan, parents watched the students in a final show which included a ballet technique class, boys variation and choreography. 

We are very proud to see how Brooklyn Ballet students have grown with the program, made possible through our partnership with ABT. Bravo!

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