Students Learn History from Latest Ballet West Performance

Students Learn History from Latest Ballet West Performance

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Carole Mikita ReportingBallet West is celebrating the season with works that the company says challenge the dancers. Carole Mikita takes us into rehearsal to see how the men conquer the challenging choreography of 'Ghost Dance'

It’s like ballet like you rarely see it, three muscular men meeting the ultimate challenge, having to look through and breathe through somewhat suffocating masks.

The stunning choreography of 'Ghost Dances' makes a political statement about the assassination of Chilean President Salvador Allende and takeover of Pinochet forces in 1973.

Jonas Kage, Ballet West artistic Director: "It is something, unfortunately, that is around us all the time. It's also very beautiful and full of humor and warmth."

As always there are free public school performances. As for 'Ghost Dances,’ the ballet says this one really ought to appeal to the students.

Mikala Manzanares, Newman Elementary 5th grader: "It had all these different movements and different costumes, and how they were dressed and how their faces looked and how the ghosts touched them and they would just faint."

Angelica Chacon, Newman Elementary 5th grader: “I thought that it would be a terrific ballet, something based on a true story.”

Elia Dule, 5th grader: "I thought it was really cool, 'cause it was different from all the other dances they have performed."

There is much food for thought with this production; they'll go back to class and discuss it.

Tom Debord, Newman Elementary School Teacher: "There's a lot there to talk about with the kids, about the different things that the dancers brought out in the show. It was unbelievable, quite a powerful performance."

Powerful and with a postivie message-- good triumphs. Ballet West's "Spring Sensation" opens tomorrow and runs through April 16th.

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