Brooklyn Ballet, a unique and interdisciplinary dance company that confronts convention and defies expectation, launches their 20th Anniversary with free community performances, classes, and a celebratory homage to their humble beginnings, June 11-12, and June 23.
Known for exploring the evolution of the art form of ballet through a modern lens that integrates hip hop and other movement styles, the first seeds of the company’s mission and vision were born when ballet dancers performed alongside hip hop dancers in a storefront in Fort Greene, Brooklyn two decades ago. Since then, a unique ballet company has flourished to yield a diverse and inclusive collective of artists, a school that has trained dancers who have gone on to pursue professional performance careers, and community programming that has provided free access to arts education and performance to more than 20,000 school aged children.
During the first weekend of programming, June 11-12, the company presents their celebrated Take Ballet to the Streets series at Albee Square, with free sample classes in all styles for all ages and levels, and performances by both Brooklyn Ballet’s professional company and its youth ensemble. In an initiative that brings ballet to locations like community centers, parks, waterfront piers, senior centers and more, accessibility headlines the weekend, calling audiences and passersby to encounter ballet and dance in new ways. The company performances feature repertory by Lynn Parkerson and her collaborators, including Jasmine Mans, poet performing live. The performances showcase multidisciplinary artists working in ballet, hip hop, modern, voguing, middle eastern dance and more. On June 23, the company moves to Brooklyn Commons at Metrotech for a pop-up afternoon performance by the professional company, bridging a series of dance styles and artists together with a mixed program for all ages.
“To bring Take Ballet to the Streets back in a full week-end format is a meaningful, full circle moment for the company and I,” notes Lynn Parkerson, Founder and Director of Brooklyn Ballet. “We have spent the last two decades dedicated to expanding the ballet audience and bringing ballet into the community in a way that feels resonant and reflective of our borough,” she continues. “These events are the perfect way to kick off our anniversary season and we can’t wait to dance, teach, learn and enjoy the summer open air together.”
With collaborative incubators, new works, and the company’s beloved The Brooklyn Nutcracker as part of the anniversary season, the company will also launch a capital campaign “Keep Brooklyn Dancing!” over the next year to secure Brooklyn Ballet’s sustainability, artistic growth, and educational programming for the next twenty years and beyond.
Take Ballet to the Streets will be held June 11-12 at Albee Square, located at the intersection of Bond and Fulton Streets in Downtown Brooklyn, accessible by the B, Q, R, and 2, 3 trains.
Free sample children and adult classes in ballet and musical theater on June 11 will be held from 11:00 am- 2:00 pm, and modern, voguing and hip hop classes from 4:00 pm-6:00 pm take place at 3:00 pm, and a company performance, at 7:00 pm
Free sample classes for all ages and levels will continue June 12, 11:00 am- 3:00 pm, with a company performance beginning at 3:00 pm Registration is strongly recommended. For the full schedule and link to register, https://www.brooklynballet.org/news/2022/take-ballet-streets-albee-square
Brooklyn Ballet POPS UP will be held June 23 at Brooklyn Commons at Metrotech, located at 15 Metro Tech Center, accessible by the F, A,C and G trains. The company performs 3 short pop-up performances from 12-2pm.
All events are FREE to attend, and registration is not required.