Ballet Tucson dancing through the pandemic

The only way to keep on dancing includes wearing a mask and smaller crowds.
Posted at 7:33 AM, Nov 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-11-28 19:31:46-05

TUCSON, Ariz. — Sometimes during a pandemic, you just have to keep dancing. Ballet Tucson is working to continue their performances right now.

The only way to keep on dancing includes wearing a mask and smaller crowds.

"Audience members are spaced appropriately. Everyone is expected to wear a mask and the performers wear a mask. We’re generally at a safe distance from the audience as well," said Jenna Johnson, the principal dancer for Ballet Tucson. She says they are still bringing the show to you through Pop-Up Performances during the pandemic. "It adds an extra layer of difficulty to everything we do," Johnson added.

The difficulties call for creative changes because of masks.

"When I’m teaching, for example, I'll try to shorten the exercise so, it isn’t so stamina oriented," Johnson said. "Also, the stage now looks very different. Performances need to be outside and that means the venues have surfaces that dancers need to get used to.

"So the choreography has to be tailored to be more forgiving on the joints, certainly more forgiving on shoes.," Johnson said. Taking the performances outside means the typical tutus are also changing. "We’re adding some extra layers over the legs and shoulders perhaps just to make it workable.”

Making it work one step at a time, whether it's in ballet shoes or sneakers, that’s what Ballet Tucson is doing. "We're just an important part of this community that needs to continue to be supportive, stick around. We can see the other end of this," Johnson said.

Performances will continue in December, that includes holiday shows like the Nutcracker. The venues range from Reid Park Zoo to the Botanical Garden. For more information on tickets and times,click here.