Oh Wowww

25 Jul

No other words but “Oh Wow” could be used to describe my experience at the American Ballet Theatre. As an education outreach intern, something new happens everyday. A day can begin with me coming into the office to organize pointe shoes, and end with me assisting an elementary ballet enrichment course for an after school program in Queens. It definitely is not your ordinary office job.

Many of the projects I have had the opportunity to work on have taken me offsite. During this year’s Metropolitan Opera season, I have been able to get very familiar with the Met at Lincoln center. Here, I worked the ABTKids pre performance workshop for Swan Lake, where a variety of arts and crafts as well as dance activities were offered to young children before attending a matinee performance with their parents. I also handed out ABTKids guides before many performances at the Met, and I am now brainstorming and developing new concepts and ideas for ABTKids guides to come for following years.

Another project that I have worked on involved creating new approaches for the Project Plié initiative. One of these approaches includes taking the company’s national partnership with the Boys and Girl’s club of America and focusing it on serving students consistently in local clubs. I had the opportunity to join my supervisor Dennis Walters and Richard Toda on a business meeting to Newark Symphony Hall where we spoke to the CEO about possible partnerships between Newark Symphony Hall and American Ballet Theatre, and incorporating these new Project Plié approaches also.

As a youth mentor and elementary school assistant in my community, I was thrilled to have the chance to work with students during my time here. I had the pleasure of assisting Richard during middle and high school ballet classes at the Summer Arts Institute, held at the Frank Sinatra School of the arts. After class I spoke with them about my collegiate dance experience as a dance major at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts and we all took great photos together.

Kiara Class

The Spontaneity of the job has been my favorite part of this internship. I have been able to learn so much about the company and other departments either through speakers brought in or my own experience when helping other departments. The highlight of my time here was when I was assisting press with ticket distribution at the Met. I received a full backstage tour of the Met, getting an inside look at costumes, hair and makeup as well as behind the scenes views of principle dancers and their pre performance routines in their dressing rooms. I even got to meet and chat with my favorite ballerina of all time, Misty Copeland, and she took a selfie with me! In this moment I felt complete in my experience and it was only the second week in. I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to work for this immaculate company and meet so many influential people in my field of interest. By far the best summer I’ve had!

Kiara-Misty

Kiara Mickens

Education Outreach Intern

Summer 2019

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