Week of April 20-24, 2020
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Welcome to ABTKids Daily, American Ballet Theatre’s new home for families and educators to discover digital content for their virtual classrooms. Join us each day to Meet an ABT Dancer, engage with an ABT Teaching Artist, learn fun facts and enjoy ballet-themed activities from the comfort of your own home.
As America’s National Ballet Company®, ABT is dedicated to preserving and extending the great legacy of classical dancing, through exciting performances and educational programming of the highest quality, presented to the widest possible audience.
Join us each Monday morning to bring the joy of classical ballet to your family. A weekly curriculum will be posted for your discovery!
ABTKids Daily is generously supported by
Explore this week’s materials below or view the archive here.
Join Mr. Jeff, Ms. Alexis and Mr. Richard as they introduce you to one of ABT’s fabulous ballets. Learn a dance, stop and sketch, and don’t forget to have fun!
Marius Ivanovich Petipa was a French ballet dancer and choreographer, one of the most influential ballet masters and choreographers in ballet history. He began his dance training at the age of seven with his father, a dancer and teacher. In 1869, Petipa was named Premier Ballet Master of the Imperial Theatre and is considered to have laid the foundation for the entire school of Russian ballet. During his career, he created more than 50 ballets, many of which are still performed today.
See which Petipa ballets ABT dancers picked as their favorites!"My Favorite Petipa Ballet"
Use the pictures and clues to guess the Petipa ballets in ABT’s repertoire or library!
Every Thursday we pull a photo from our archives and share it with one of our ABT dancers. You never know what stories may come from a single snapshot!
“This is a photo of me with one of my best friends, Catherine Hurlin, from the premiere of ABT’s The Nutcracker 10 years ago! Seeing this image brings back so many memories of the hours Catherine, the other casts of children and I worked on this production with Alexei Ratmansky.
For the first half of the ballet I portray a Nutcracker doll with a massive Nutcracker head that I would wear, and for the second half of the ballet I turn into a young prince. This photo specifically captures the moment right after the battle scene where I transform from a Nutcracker to a real boy. Let me tell you, by the time this scene came I was always happy to take that head off because it got hot in there! Catherine and I always laugh to ourselves when we think about this moment because this transformation happens on stage and there is no moment to leave and make sure we look okay for the snow scene.
I was always excited for the snow scene because not only was it my favorite scene, but it was also the first moment where the audience actually sees my face. Usually before the show I would go to the hair and make-up room and they would spray tons of hairspray to hopefully make sure my hair stayed in place with the Nutcracker head on. There was one show where I specifically remember the head coming off, and I could feel my hair tugging with it and I knew my hair was left sticking up. While I had a moment where the audience couldn’t see my face I whispered to Catherine, “Fix my hair!” So Catherine, while trying to act in awe of my transformation, lightly patted down my stubborn hair and she whispered back to me, “Okay I fixed it!” I’m not sure if anyone in the audience noticed but it was a funny moment I’ll always remember. To this day, I still have a bit of an obsession with how my hair looks on stage, and I’m infamous for using all of the hairspray from the hair and makeup room.”
Write about a time when your best friend helped you out of a jam.
One of Marius Petipa’s most exciting ballets is Le Corsaire, a swashbuckling tale about pirates. Click on the worksheet to design a costume and story for your own pirate character.Le Corsaire Worksheet
@ABTSchool offers virtual classes taught by former ABT dancers, ABT JKO School faculty and ABT teaching artists – all certified in the ABT National Training Curriculum.
These classes will engage ABT’s youngest students and their families, as well as the global community at large, by exploring musicality, fostering creativity and imagination, and teaching ballet fundamentals.
Mon & Wed @2:00pm: Primary (Ages 5-8)
Tue & Thu @10:00am: ABTots (Ages 2-4)