INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Ballet will close the curtain on its unprecedented 2020-21 season to the sweet sound of applause.
It is a sound that artists of all genres have missed for more than a year, for reasons much deeper than craving praise from the public.
“It just makes you feel like you have more of a purpose,” Camila Ferrera, founding company member of the Indianapolis Ballet said.
That feeling came rushing back to Ferrera and her fellow dancers back in April, when the Ballet hosted a 30% capacity crowd for performances of the show Grace to Grandeur.
After a tough year of not performing at all to performing virtually, Ferrera described dancing in front of a live audience again as exhilarating.
“That was the moment I’d been waiting for. It just brought me back all the love that I had for this art form,” she said. “I don’t care if there were like, three humans in the audience, as long as there were people watching you know, being inspired.”
The company will close out the season on that high note, with in-person performances of The Sleeping Beauty Suite at The Toby at Newfields June 10 to 13.
The show is a condensed version of the classic ballet production of The Sleeping Beauty. It is shortened to eliminate the need for intermissions as the pandemic continues.
While the season is wrapping up, the Indianapolis Ballet has much to look forward to in the months ahead.
The Indianapolis School of Ballet runs through the summer and the professional company will perform in the IndyFringe Festival in August.
There are even bigger plans for the long term future. The organization recently hired its first executive director.
Don Steffy brings decades of experience to the job, both as a classical ballet dancer and running a ballet company. He also previously served as executive director of the Pike Performing Arts Center and the Indianapolis Children’s Choir.
Two of his main goals are stabilizing and expanding the company.
“Expand the works that we do…bring in more outside choreographers and looking at some exciting new works for the future,” Steffy said.
He also plans to build revenue streams to help ensure the Indianapolis Ballet is here for the long haul.
Steffy said those goals are not just important for the organization, but for the community and local economy.
“For a city, a Midwest city our size, it’s wonderful to sort of have a complete array of performing arts available to the citizenry,” he said. “Of course, for Gov. Holcomb and Mayor Hogsett, when they’re trying to attract business, they want to know ‘what do you have?’ and this just adds another beautiful layer to people who might be coming.”
To learn more about everything the Indianapolis Ballet has to offer and how you can support it, go to indyballet.org.