Ballet Des Moines Announces 20-21 Virtual Fall Season

Iowa’s professional resident ballet company announces 2020 virtual fall season new contemporary works, local partnerships, and virtual Nutcracker experiences.

Online PR News – 18-August-2020 – Des Moines, Iowa – While dance companies around the nation are canceling in-person rehearsals and productions, Ballet Des Moines announced today its robust 2020-21 virtual fall season, committing to keep the arts alive in our community.

“We are lucky to have the ability to continue our work while keeping the artists safe,” said Blaire Massa, Ballet Des Moines’ Executive Director. “Our small company means we have unique opportunities to minimize risk while producing exciting new works and keeping our sector alive. We are thrilled to announce new partnerships with other local groups who share our vision to strengthen our city’s vibrant, creative community through inspirational, world-class artistic works.”

New Creative Collaborations Come to Life

While Ballet Des Moines has always brought guest choreographers into the organization to promote their mission of offering people of all ages an opportunity to experience world-class ballet, the work being created this fall includes new creative twists.

The 20-21 season includes collaborations with some of Des Moines’ world-class musicians: a world premiere production in partnership with the Belin Quartet, light-hearted and romantic jazz performed by Max Wellman and his band, and a new contemporary ballet set to the music of Schubert, performed by the Roseman Quartet based out of Ames, IA. Additionally, a world premiere production of Peter and the Wolf, created to supplement distance learning arts curricula in conjunction with Des Moines Public Schools will be created.

Regarding the choreography planned, Artistic Director Serkan Usta said, “We’re very excited for this ambitious season ahead. We’re creating a lot of new work and visiting some contemporary favorites. We have retained strong dancers and are welcoming three new dancers to our company and community. We are excited to get to work, creatively, and most importantly, safely.”

A virtual Nutcracker experience

In line with ballet companies around the world, Ballet Des Moines’ Nutcracker will not appear on the stage this December, but the holiday magic will live on through a variety of virtual Nutcracker experiences, available later this fall. Young dancers will have the opportunity to learn choreography through online tutorials, receive costumes to create their own performance at home, have a tea party with the Sugarplum Fairy, and gain access to exclusive performance footage so the entire family can be part of the experience.

“We are heartbroken not to be welcoming our community of nearly 400 dancers from 40 local studios to participate in our annual production of The Nutcracker, but it is exciting to have the opportunity to get creative and share this beloved holiday tradition with an even broader audience of young artists.” said Massa.

Iowa’s Professional Resident Company

Six full-time company professionals will make up the Ballet Des Moines roster this season, three male and three female dancers. All six dancers will be in Des Moines for the start of the season beginning September 7. Background information, virtual interviews, and behind-the-scenes footage will be available to the media.

Renee Castonguay, Fountain Valley, CA

Amelia Grubb, McLean, VA

Logan Hillman, Clifton, VA

Sunny Hsieh, Taiwan

Bobbie Kandravi, Houston,Texas

Ben Rose, Houston,Texas

A New Step Forward

While Covid-19 continues to devastate the performing arts, Ballet Des Moines is inspired to create a powerful season of dance, on or off the stage. The dancers have a robust schedule of rehearsals planned, dancing six days a week at the Ballet Des Moines studio. Productions will be recorded throughout the fall and shared without a paywall, ensuring access and an opportunity for our entire community to experience inspiring, contemporary programming.