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ABTKids Daily

Week of November 16-20, 2020

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Experience the excitement of classical ballet at home with ABTKids Daily!

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
Bloomberg Philanthropies


Explore this week’s materials below or view the archive here.


Watch ABTKids 2020: B is for Ballet!
Presented in partnership with Random House Children’s Books,
the program is inspired by B Is for Ballet: A Dance Alphabet.

Week of November 16-20, 2020

To Read

To Watch

To Do

"The Show Must Go On" Week!

One of the reasons people love attending live theatre is that you never know what you might see at any given performance. When the curtain rises at the start of the show, the performers, musicians, and audience participate in an experience that can never be replicated ever again. Each performance is unique and sometimes it doesn’t quite go as planned!

“The Show Must Go On” was a saying that developed in the mid-19th Century. It is unclear exactly who uttered this phrase for the first time, but it was believed to originate from the American circus. With circuses traveling the countryside and touring from town to town, the performers faced many challenges. A performer could get hurt, an animal might get loose, a comedy sketch may fall flat, but at the end of the day the Ringmaster would calmly say to the audience, “The Show Must Go On!”

Some believe the saying originated in the theatre as the idea can be traced all the way back to William Shakespeare’s play Henry IV Part I where he wrote “Play out the play.”

This week we shine a spotlight on the “excitement of live theatre” and some of the ABT performances where we all took a deep breath and simply said “The Show Must Go On!”

Meet a Dancer Monday

Soloist Blaine Hoven

Every dancer has an exciting story about a time that something happened unexpectedly in the middle of a live performance. It could involve a curtain that comes in too early or a prop that won’t cooperate. Sometimes it can even be really funny like an animal on stage misbehaving.

Today we meet ABT Soloist Blaine Hoven, who holds the distinction of having one of the all-time memorable performances on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House! It’s not uncommon for dancers to play multiple roles in a ballet, but one evening Blaine got to play both leading male roles in the same scene!

Teaching Artist Tuesday

Join one of ABT’s Teaching Artists as they introduce you to ABT and its ballets. Learn a dance, stop and sketch, and don’t forget to have fun!

Up this week: ABT Teaching Artist Richard Toda and Isabella from Long Island High School of Arts!

The Show Must Go On: Don Quixote!

What's Up Wednesday

Winston Goes to the Warehouse (Episode 3): Romeo and Juliet Prop Tour

Join Winston, a student at the American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School, as he makes his first ever trip to ABT’s warehouse in Secaucus, New Jersey.

Throwback Thursday

Edward Verso

Join ABT legend Edward Verso as he describes his first performance in Jerome Robbins’s iconic ballet Fancy Free, and what happens when the audience knows the choreography better than you!

Writing Prompt

Write about a time that you forgot a step in a dance, missed a line in a play, or lost your place during a school presentation and how you overcame it.

Funtime Friday

Stage Managers

On the football field the quarterback is often described as the “Field General” because of the hundreds of small decisions they have to make throughout the game that ultimately affects the outcome.

In ballet our quarterbacks are the Stage Managers that work together to put on the best possible show each and every night. It is their job to ensure that all of the elements of the performance (dancers, musicians, wardrobe, stage crew, props, supernumeraries, and front of house) come together as the choreographer and artistic team originally envisioned.

Today we sit down with ABT Production Stage Manager Danielle Ventimiglia to learn about her job and if it’s common for things to go wrong during a show.

Word Jumble

It’s ten minutes to showtime! Help unscramble 7 vocabulary words from the week and finish before the curtain rises!

ABT JKO School Children's Division Online Community Classes

In the Spring of 2020, @ABTSchool launched virtual classes taught by former ABT dancers, ABT JKO School faculty and ABT teaching artists – all certified in the ABT National Training Curriculum.

Recommended for ages 2-4 and 5-8, these classes 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.

View the full series on @ABTSchool IGTV or ABT’s YouTube Channel.

@ABTSchool IGTVYouTube

Photo: Richard Corman.