NYCB's Peter Walker will be back onstage in Agon this week. Paul Kolnik, Courtesy NYCB.

Onstage This Week: NYCB and SFB Open Their Winter Seasons and More!

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've pulled together some highlights.


NYCB Winter Season Opens on Balanchine's 115th Birthday

The winter ballet season is officially underway, and we couldn't be more excited. New York City Ballet's season opens January 22 and runs through March 3. Week one features two all-Balanchine programs. The first, opening appropriately on the 115th anniversary of the great choreographer's birth, features the Stravinsky/Balanchine "Greek Trilogy": Apollo, Orpheus and Agon. The second program includes three Balanchine works to Tchaikovsky: Serenade, Mozartiana and Tschaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 2, which showcases brand new costumes designed by NYCB's Marc Happel.

San Francisco Ballet Opens With Don Quixote

San Francisco Ballet's Repertory Season opens January 25 and runs through May 12. The first of the company's eight programs is Don Quixote, on through February 3. Don Quixote is an SFB audience favorite; it was last performed in 2015, and the company is referring to it as "the stylish rom-com of classical ballet." In the above video, principal Mathilde Froustey talks through Kitri's Act III solo.

Sarasota Ballet Presents a World Premiere by Ricardo Graziano

Ellen Overstreet and Weslley Carvalho in Four Scottish Dances

Frank Atura, Courtesy Sarasota Ballet

January 25-28 marks Sarasota Ballet's Transcending Movement program featuring four unique works: David Bintley's Four Scottish Dances, Frederick Ashton's Meditation from Thaïs and Varii Capricci (a company premiere), and a world premiere by principal dancer and resident choreographer Ricardo Graziano. Former American Ballet Theatre star Marcelo Gomes is also back in Sarasota as a guest performer.

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James Barkley, Courtesy Dance for Change

Take Class From Celebrated Black Dancers and Raise Money for the NAACP Through Dance for Change

Since the nationwide fight against racial inequality took center stage in May, organizations across the dance world have been looking for meaningful ways to show their support, rather than fall back on empty social media signifiers. July 10-11, Diamante Ballet Dancewear is taking action with Dance for Change, a two-day event dedicated to fundraising for the NAACP, and amplifying the voices of Black professional dancers.

Organized by Diamante Ballet Dancewear's founder, Nashville Ballet 2 dancer Isichel Perez, and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre teacher Elise Gillum, Dance for Change makes it easy to participate. Dancers need only to make a donation to the NAACP (in any amount) and email proof to diamante.ballet@gmail.com to be given online access to a full schedule of Zoom master classes taught by Black pros artists. Teachers include Ballet Memphis' George Sanders, Boston Ballet's Daniel Durrett, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's Corey Bourbonniere, and more. "It's important that we amplify BIPOC voices during this time, and it's also important that we're conscious of where we're putting our dollars," says Bourbonniere. "Diamante is doing both with Dance for Change, and I'm honored to be in this talented group of melanated dancers."

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Houston Ballet's "Dancing With Myself" Captures How We All Feel Right Now

What are dancers to do when they're still stuck at home in isolation? After all, there's only so much time you can spend taking barre, tackling your reading list (or Netflix queue) or ticking items off your to-do list. Even wistfully looking out the window has lost its appeal after a few months.

That's when you need a dance party—even it's for a party of one.

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"Our Studio Is Failing Its Students of Color": One Dancer's Experience of Racism and Microaggressions

I recently spent a Saturday night with my husband and my 17-year-old dancing daughter, who sobbed at the foot of our bed. My daughter revealed her experiences with implicit bias and overt racism in school, and especially in the dance studio.

For six years, she has danced at a classical ballet school tied to the city's ballet company. The previous six years were spent at a mid-sized recreational/competition studio. I want to recount a few examples of the racism that my daughter shared that night.

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