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ABTKids Daily

Week of July 26-30, 2021

Christine Shevchenko in Giselle. Photo: Khalid Al-Busaidi.
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Experience the excitement of classical ballet at home with ABTKids Daily!

Welcome to ABTKids Daily, American Ballet Theatre’s 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.

A new curriculum will be posted bi-weekly, so we hope that join us every other Monday to bring the joys of classical ballet to your children and students!

ABTKids Daily is generously supported by
Bloomberg Philanthropies

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

Watch ABTKids at the Top of the Rock!
Presented in partnership with Rockefeller Center
as part of their 2021 Spring Sunday event.

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 July 26-30, 2021

To Read

To Watch

To Do

ABTKids Daily Replay

In case you missed it! Enjoy these activities about the classic ballet Giselle, originally posted the week of June 8-10, 2020.

Meet a Dancer Monday

“Getting the Wilis” with Courtney Lavine and Zimmi Coker

Since its creation in 1841, Giselle has been the longest continuously performed ballet in the world.  This timeless story was part of American Ballet Theatre’s inaugural season in 1940 and over its 80year history, there have been 6 different productions, the most of any ballet in ABT’s repertoire!   

Join corps de ballet dancers Courtney Lavine and Zimmi Coker as they introduce Giselle and the mysterious characters they playthe Wilis. 

Teaching Artist Tuesday

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

Up this week: Ms. Wendy!

Giselle: Dance of the Wilis

What's Up Wednesday

The Romantic Era

In the early 19th century, ballet audiences began to tire from the mythical themes of ancient gods and goddesses that dominated the ballet landscape. Instead they wanted to watch stories that they could relate with, stories about real people from real places.

This change ushered in the Romantic Era which began in the early 1830’s and tapered off around the start of the next century. Use the slides below to learn about the Romantic era and the ballets that have inspired generations of dancers and ballet-lovers!

Romantic Era Quiz

Throwback Thursday

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!

Breanne Granlund and Larkin Miller at ABT's 2014 Summer Intensive Final Performance. Photo: Rosalie O'Connor.
Breanne Granlund and Larkin Miller at ABT's 2014 Summer Intensive Final Performance. Photo: Rosalie O'Connor.

Breanne Granlund
ABT Corps de Ballet
Joined ABT as Apprentice in 2016

This photo represents the last ABT Summer Intensive I participated in before joining ABT Studio Company in 2014. That summer, my level danced excerpts from La Bayadère. I was lucky enough to share the main role of Gamzatti with Erica Lall, who is also a member of ABT’s corps de ballet. Because we had a larger group that year, we had two Gamzattis dance in each performance. It was a fun and different experience getting to share that role with Erica as we each took turns dancing the allegro and adagio section. Erica and I knew each other from previous ABT Summer Intensives which allowed us to grow pretty close as friends throughout the years. Not to mention, we are both from Texas! One moment I will never forget, and find very special, is the day before our final performance in the Summer Intensive showcase. Erica and I were both offered ABT Studio Company contracts for the upcoming season starting in the fall. We were ecstatic!

Fun fact, La Bayadère has been a ballet that I’ve grown to love and cherish. I performed pieces of the ballet for the first time in the ABT Summer Intensive in 2014, then again in ABT Studio Company in 2016, and finally with the main Company in 2018 at the Metropolitan Opera House. La Bayadère holds many memories, one being that in this ballet I performed my first solo with the main company. It is truly one of the most challenging ballets I’ve ever danced but has also been incredibly humbling and rewarding. It gives me that feeling of “a job well done” when I find myself struggling to stand at the end of the show. I feel so honored to have been able to perform this beautiful ballet many times through the years and I look forward to the many more years to come.

View More Photos of Breanne!

Writing Prompt

Write about a work of art (ballet, musical, painting, etc.) that you have grown to love and why.

Funtime Friday

What in the World? – 1841

In 1841, Giselle was wowing audiences in Paris, the “Machine for Sticking Pins in Paper” was invented, and the United State of America had three presidents!

After learning about the exciting world events of 1841, choose an adult (parent, grandparent, uncle/aunt, neighbor) and ask them what year they were born. Write the year on the top of the worksheet below and do your best to learn as many exciting things as you can from that year.

What types of Google searches might you use?

  • What happened in the year [xxxx]?
  • What was invented in the year [xxxx]?
  • ?

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.