ABT: The Insight(FULL) Insider Edition

7 Aug

MakaylainternphotoAmerican Ballet Theatre’s 4th floor- Home to the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School, National Training Curriculum, Outreach, and Studio Company staff. A floor full of constant activity from the hustle and bustle of teacher training and the collegiate intensive to the summer dance intensive and dance workshop. The wheels are always turning like a well oiled machine and there has never been a dull moment. The dedicated staff members always created a welcoming and fun atmosphere which truly made this journey one of a kind.

The immediate immersion into outreach projects captured my attention. On the third day of my internship, I was already accompanying teaching artists to a partner school to help with arts and crafts projects for their show the next day! I assisted with pre-performance workshops for Swan Lakeand Whipped Cream. It was a fulfilling and heartwarming experience to witness the joy and enthusiasm on the faces of the young dancers. Their openness to learn and interest in ballet made me smile from cheek to cheek.

Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, Whipped Cream, Don Quixote, and Harlequinade-All the ballets I had the pleasure of seeing during ABT’s MET season this year! The sets, stage presence, technique, precision….I could go on and on about how phenomenal every aspect of the performance was, but we would be here forever. During every single show, I was in awe to say the least. Regardless of how many times I see these ballets, everytime is like the first time all over again. My personal favorite was Swan Lake.As a dancer and choreographer, it made my artistic eye tingle seeing the various formations and transitions present in the choreography. The intricacy and nuances of it were so seamless. It left me utterly mesmerized.

As a former Make A Ballet and Summer Arts Institute student, I’ve been able to be on both ends of the spectrum. This past summer, I’ve been able to experience the different aspects relating to school participation, be a demonstrator at SAI and see the multiple components that come together to facilitate each program. I am passionate about any kind of community engagement projects and I’m so fortunate to have been able to get a behind the scenes look at the various features that help the outreach program be so prosperous.

“INSIGHT(FULL)” is defined as “having or showing an accurate and deep understanding; perceptive”. After these two months, I now have greater comprehension of how everyone is essential to the success of this department. Being here, I never felt like just an intern, I was a part of the team. Everything I did mattered. My mentors Amanda, Dennis and Richard needless to say are true visionaries in work ethics of getting tasks done efficiently and have such a passion for sharing their knowledge with the interns. Coming to the office was always a pleasure as I knew I would learn something new everyday. Sitting at Ethan Stiefel’s desk as well as right in front of Sascha Radetsky never got old.

Working here at ABT has been an opportunity of a lifetime. Being able to help this company of this stature in its daily operation is definitely a check on my bucket list.

For me, the ending of my internship isn’t a goodbye ABT, it’s a see you later.

Makayla Peterson

Education Outreach Intern

Summer 2018

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