Cincinnati Ballet returns with outdoor performances

Posted at 7:08 PM, Sep 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-16 20:25:24-04

CINCINNATI — In a world where performing indoors is tough, the Cincinnati Ballet is taking its art outside. Performing with music from a symphony quartet and some opera voices, ballet dancers – either solo or in pairs of dancers who already live with one another – will soon be back to doing what they love in front of an audience.

The last time anyone got to see the Cincinnati Ballet perform was in February at Music Hall, and it turns out "Swan Lake" was a temporary swan song.

When COVID-19 caused stages across the country to go dark, it forced ballet dancers like Taylor Carrasco to take a break.

“Not only was it losing a paycheck, but it was also losing the avenue for me and all my colleagues to express ourselves and to feel totally human.”

Carrasco said the lack of dancing really hurt his heart.

“We tried to bring it out end of July – no no no,” said Cincinnati Ballet artistic director Victoria Morgan. “Cancel, cancel, cancel – but finally in the safest way possible we are gonna be on stage.”

The ballet is back on, but outdoors instead of indoors. They’re going to perform at Sawyer Point on the P&G pavilion’s cement stage. The ballet will have to import a floor to perform there, though, because there’s no "give" in the cement.

“We have strict union regulations about a spring floor,” Morgan said.

The company also has strict rules about masks and distancing.

“Thankfully, we're one of the first companies in the country that's come up with a safe and strong plan to get us back,” Carrasco said.

Audience members, who will be seated on the lawn, will take safety measures as well. Ticket holders can come in groups of two to six people and they’ll sit in socially spaced pods – the ballet calls it "booking a bubble."

“This performance is going to be a celebration,” Carrasco said.

The show is free for anyone who gets to see it.

“Through this tough time, the community has stepped up – supported us,” Morgan said.

“We just wanted to give a gift – thank you for being there – for remembering us."

Ballet in the Park, set for Sept. 25 - 27, sold out in one hour. They are adding one more show Saturday, Sept. 26, at 2 p.m.

Socially distanced reservations can be found here.