231,089 likes. There will be some drastic differences to pre-Covid shows, with less than half the usual audience (423 at Sadler’s instead of 1,400, and 1,100 at the Coliseum, where ENB usually sell out 2,300 seats). ENB had to furlough 85% of its workforce and many of the staff took pay cuts (20%-25% for most, more for Rojo herself). Probably not.”. “Nobody wants a smaller, less diverse, less interesting ballet world,” says Rojo. Performance Art Theatre. Ballet is finally putting its pointe shoes back on for a live audience.

Dance has taken a real hit, and it’s been more of a challenge to get dancers back to work than other art forms. Royal Opera House. Not Now. “We never paid it much attention or invested much in it,” says Rojo. “We reached people that no matter how much we danced, we never could have reached physically,” she says. Getting together to share stories is intrinsic to humanity. But on the upside, ENB’s swanky new Docklands building has seven studios, so there is plenty of room for distancing, and the biggest doubles as a stage, so they can broadcast from there. English National Ballet will return to the stage soon, but dance’s wider future looks precarious. ENGLISH NATIONAL BALLET is responsible for this Page. Available for everyone, funded by readers. Maybe Covid will go away but the impact of it won’t, we’re going to need many years to recover financially from this.”, ENB normally plans three to five years ahead: uncertainty about the future is one of the most damaging things. People will gather, live performance will continue to exist.” Just maybe not quite in the way we’re used to, yet. Nonprofit Organization. This month there are performances by the Royal Ballet, Northern Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet – and English National Ballet, where Rojo is artistic director, has just announced two live shows. English National Ballet will return to the stage soon, but dance’s wider future looks precarious. “There is a physical reality about dance,” says Rojo, “it depends on physical contact, and you actually need space, you need to join together for the experience of class and rehearsal; the art itself is one of a group gathering and creating.”, ENB’s dancers are working in bubbles, still maintaining distance where they can, but it’s not always possible. All rights reserved. Related Pages. The company’s artistic director tells us about bubbles, business models, and ballet classes in her kitchen, Mon 12 Oct 2020 12.16 BST

But four million people have tuned in to the ballet classes Rojo ran from her kitchen, and a million joined the Wednesday Watch Party screenings of ENB’s ballets.

People. “We need to look at theatre tax relief, and we need a government that underwrites insurance. “You can feel it in the corridors.” And very soon, on stage and screen as well.

The company’s artistic director tells us about bubbles, business models, and ballet … It’s been shelved for now – literally, she says, pointing to the files behind her desk – which stung, but she has plenty else to think about. Tamara Rojo may be a great tragic dancer on stage, but in person she is far from the voice of doom. “We are trying to find a way to not lose money, that’s all we want to do at this point,” says Rojo.

She thinks the UK’s larger and more established dance companies will be OK in the long term, but it’s the independent artists and freelancers and those working backstage who are in trouble. “What we’re all asking for is a date, and I understand how difficult that is,” says Rojo, but there are other things that could help. In November, a live version of their upcoming digital season will feature five new short ballets at Sadler’s Wells, and in December there’s a slimmed-down version of The Nutcracker at the London Coliseum. Performance & Event Venue. That government support is crucial, says Rojo, but she points out that in a good year the cultural industries are worth £111bn to the UK economy. “The situation cannot be sustained much longer. New York City Ballet. It is putting off people who would otherwise be hiring and producing from taking that risk.”, Four million people tuned in to online ballet classes Rojo ran from her kitchen … 'We had people waking up at 4am in Mexico to join', The one good thing that’s come out of lockdown is that it’s necessitated a focus on digital work, always very much a sideshow in the past. The loss of talent and skill breaks my heart,” she says. © 2020 Guardian News & Media Limited or its affiliated companies.

Will it be worth their while financially? If producers and theatres take on a Nutcracker season and then after the first show we have to close down, the loss will be disastrous. Nonprofit Organization. 4,347visits. Christmas isn’t quite cancelled after all. See actions taken by the people who manage and post content. “I passionately believe we need to restart the sector and rehire choreographers and technicians and lighting designers and composers and film-makers so that the engine starts moving, even if it doesn’t make financial sense.”. https://www.facebook.com/EnglishNationalBallet/videos/285902982475440 New York City Ballet. “They’ve survived pandemics and hundred-year wars and all kind of disasters. Log In.

See more of English National Ballet on Facebook.

So as generous as this is, it’s not going to go far enough.

Last modified on Wed 14 Oct 2020 22.16 BST. “Despite everything, it’s a very creative moment for the company,” she says.

Related Pages. Birmingham Royal Ballet. “So either they have to be household partners, or we have to do some testing and measures to mitigate the risk – the first thing being if you’re in that duet then you don’t mix with any other bubbles.”, Rojo was in the middle of choreographing her first ballet, a bold reimagining of the 19th-century classic Raymonda, when Covid struck. Forgot account? “In Nutcracker, there are things like the Sugar Plum Fairy pas de deux that has to happen,” she says. Nonprofit Organization. “The performing arts and dance have survived millennia,” she says, sitting in her office looking out onto a floor of empty desks. American Ballet Theatre.

The company had emergency funding from the Arts Council until September and has applied for a share of the much trumpeted £1.57bn arts rescue package.

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