Updated: Friday, May 22, 2020, 10:30am
Update: Health and Safety Plan Available for Summer Programs
Thank you for your patience as we work through an ever-changing situation and make plans we believe to be in the best interest of our students, art form, and community.
Updated: Tuesday, May 12, 2020, 3:00pm
Update: Cancelation of 2020 Défilé Performance
It is with a heavy heart that we must announce our 2020 Défilé has been cancelled.
Please know that we at ABAA have not made this decision lightly. After considering the ongoing advice from local government and health officials to refrain from gathering in large groups, we've realized that in a performance setting this is unavoidable. We were unable to find a feasible way to reschedule this performance; therefore, the most responsible option we have is to cancel.
Please also know that as the director, every year's Défilé brings me so much joy as I see how rewarding it is for our students to display their hard work onstage. I recognize that canceling Défilé will likely be disappointing, and I apologize. I will greatly miss seeing our students grace the stage this year; and even in spite of this cancellation, I want to encourage us all to turn a hopeful eye toward future opportunities.
Despite our need to cancel Défilé this year, we'll continue to explore the educational and fun aspects of learning choreography by practicing our Défilé dances. We'll also create other opportunities to perform, both in person at home and by sending videos to teachers, friends, and family.
We know we'll continue to share the art and joy of dance with you via virtual dance classes and online learning materials. We're eager to return to the studio in person as soon as it's safe to do so.
Each account will receive a credit for Défilé fees ($40 for Pre-Ballet and Junior dancers/$60 for Senior dancers), as well as a credit for the tickets purchased by the account. You will see the credit posted to your account by May 1st. Please feel free to use the credit for Summer sessions (registration currently open), private lessons, or our 2020-2021 School Year Programs (registration beginning May 15th).
Once again, thank you so much for your ongoing support and understanding at this difficult time.
Update: 2020 Summer Programs Remain Scheduled as Planned
As of today, we have not yet made any changes to our Summer Programs. We are hoping to hold 2020 Summer Programs as planned if government and health officials advise that it is safe to do so. We will implement a safety plan at that time.
Students who are enrolled in 2020 Summer Programs (Summer Class Session, The Pre-Professional Dancer Summer Dance Intensive, Pre-Professional Study, Young Dancer Camps, and Nutcracker Prep Classes) will be notified by email of any changes.
Updated: Sunday, April 5, 2020, 10:30am
Update: Rescheduling of A Midsummer Night's Dream Performances
Hello ABAA Midsummer Cast members & Parents,
It was difficult to have to postpone our A Midsummer Night's Dream performances. We have appreciated your understanding and support around these decisions.
- I am happy to announce that in partnership with the Ives Theatre, we have been able to reschedule these performances for future dates.
- We will remain flexible at this unprecedented time and appreciate your understanding if/when we have to reschedule performances for the health and safety of everyone.
- We remain dedicated to giving our students the performing opportunities they are looking forward to, even if not as formerly planned.
- It is also great to keep in mind that while our performances are the icing on the cake, I truly believe that the most important thing we give your child is the personal connection to this beautiful art form that comes from dance education.
I do realize that the new dates may not work with your current summer plans. If that is the case, I do apologize.
Please trust that during this process, I considered all the possibilities, all the conflicts, the rehearsal availability, the theatre availability, the timing of summer plans, our financial budget, and the ever-changing world affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Lastly, I would like to say thank you to our families for their support at this difficult time. As a small business, this is crucial to the future of our school. We are all in this together and we will continue to strive to share the art and joy of dance with our families and the community. We need joyful outlets more than ever and are grateful to be able to continue to share dance with you.
Ashley Burkland and the ABAA Staff
Updated: Wednesday, April 1, 2020, 8:00pm
Update: Return from Spring Break
Hello ABAA Students & Parents,
Updates: Covid-19 & Return from Spring Break
I hope you all are well! As our Spring Break draws to an end, I wanted to give you an update on how things are going “at the studio” and our plans for the next few months. While things remain uncertain, we will continue to be proactive and consider the advice of our government and health officials. Right now, the state mandate requires all recreational facilities to remain closed until May 1st, and as always, the health and safety of our staff, students, and their families is of the utmost importance.
We deeply appreciate all of the positive feedback we have received about our online learning materials. It warms my heart to hear the joy your child receives from them. Before the stay-at-home order went into effect, the ABAA faculty was at the studio, working hard to create more content for your child’s online learning materials. Although we would much rather be in the studio with your dancer, we are grateful to remain connected with our students, helping them to continue their dance studies and move their bodies. I truly believe that dance is good for the soul and the mind.
Flexible Timeline & Plans for Exciting “Virtual Classes”
The latest announcement from Governor Walz predicted online schooling until at least May 4th. We plan to follow this advice and the school systems. We are hopeful that we can return to the studio with our students after May 4th, but will also be flexible and know that this may not be the case. We will continue to provide our classes through online learning. We are very excited about our weekly themes to keep classes fresh and help our students progress. Each virtual class will consist of three parts:
Part 1: Warm-Up, Technique, & Theme Material
Part 2: Défilé - learning the art of memorizing choreography in a fun way!
Part 3: Fun “assignments” such as: coloring sheets, journaling, or supplementary videos to watch, learn from, and enjoy.
We realize it is hard to focus on a video for a normal class length, and believe this method gives the dancers a nice balance (pun intended). Teachers may veer from themes, depending on what each particular class needs, but in general, your child can look forward to the following classes:
Week 24 April 6 - 11
- Include previous barre/warm-up
- Learn the vocabulary on the syllabus
- Learn the step and meaning
- Analyze the step and work on common corrections
- Learn combinations to put the steps on context
Week 25 April 13 - 18
- Include previous barre/warm-up
- Review and add on to Défilé dance
- Review the dance and/or learn new steps
- Analyze and work on common corrections
- Assign students to “perform” for family at home, and send a video to teacher
Week 26 April 20 - 25
New Barre/Warm-Up Day
- Learn a new barre/warm-up
- Junior Level 2/3A & Up: Review Défilé barre exercises
- Review Choreography Day & Vocabulary Day material
Week 27 April 27 - May 2
Stretch & Flexibility Day
- Learn how to warm up, and combinations incorporating stretching
- Stretch challenge!
- Send in your "splits" photos or other challenge photos
Week 28 May 4 - 11 (Possible return to studio*)
New Center & Stretches
- Include previous barre/warm-up
- Learn new center combinations
- Center stretch exercises
Week 29 May 13 - 18 (Possible return to studio*)
“Dress Rehearsal/Performance” Day
- Condense all video material for a full class - lots of dancing and music!
- Défilé choreography review
- Défilé "Performance" - Perform for family
- Record and send “performance” video to teacher, we would love to watch! Share with family and friends.
Week 30 May 20 - 25 (Possible return to studio*)
“Sneak Peak”/ Post-Performance Day
- Final review with lots of dancing and music!
- Students will get a “sneak peak” of material they can look forward to learning next year!
- Analyze Défilé "Performance" videos
Week 31 May 27 - June 1 (Possible return to studio*)
Last Class Celebration
- Final fun vocab quiz
- Stretch to see how much you've improved this year!
- Perform your choreography
- Learn “picture poses,” practice, & share!
Week 32 June 3 - 8 (Possible return to studio*)
- We will work with Steve Lucas to reschedule if needed
*If we are able to return to the studio, classes will proceed as usual with full barre/warm-up, center work, choreography review, and preparation for Défilé
We will email you updates on our performances in the coming days. Thank you for your continued patience while we work with our guest performers, theatres, tech crews, and the advice of government and health officials to formulate the best plan moving forward.
Lastly, I would like to say thank you to our families for their support at this difficult time. As a small business, this is crucial to the future of our school. We are all in this together, and we will continue to strive to share the art and joy of dance with our "dance families" and the community. We are feeling the need for joyful outlets now more than ever, and we are grateful for the opportunity to continue sharing dance with you.
"In a society that worships love, freedom and beauty, dance is sacred. It is a prayer for the future, a remembrance of the past and a joyful exclamation of thanks for the present."
- Amelia Atwater-Rhodes
Ashley Burkland and the ABAA Staff