By Jill Henricksen |
Residents from Beacon’s Lydia Apartments had the opportunity to attend their first ballet production, compliments of the James Sewell Ballet (JSB) at the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts.
The opportunity was made available through a grant by the Minnesota State Arts Board to the JSB to introduce ballet to underserved community members. The outing to the ballet came after several sessions with James Sewell working with residents at Lydia. James taught residents focusing, relaxation and calming techniques through mind/body connections and basic ballet movements. In addition, he shared his personal story with the residents in an effort to build trust and make them comfortable.
The goals of the project are to increase resident participation over time in workshops held at Lydia as well as attending professional performances at the Cowles Center. Lydia residents have loved the time they’ve had with James, particularly the performance. We took cabs to the Cowles Center, attended the amazing performance and afterward the JSB had pizza waiting for us in a room down the hall from the Tek Box Studio Theater. After pizza James invited our group to the dance floor for group photos.
It was a memorable day for everyone!