Kansas Ballet Company will present their third annual Summer Gala at Topeka High School on July 25th, a culmination of three weeks of intensive study by students at Kansas Ballet Academy. More than 40 local dancers will train five days a week—many for seven hours a day—to cultivate their ballet technique and rehearse for the upcoming event. Highlighted by a special performance of the famous Black Swan Pas de Deux by Oksana Maslova & Anton Kandaurov, professional guest dancers from Ukraine, the program also features a charming one act ballet, The Fairy Doll, about a toy shop that magically comes to life. This year’s Intensive classes will take place in Kansas Ballet’s brand new home in Hillsdale Shopping Center at 17th and Fairlawn. The new location is the former home of the Topeka Ballet School, which officially merged with Kansas Ballet early this summer.
Artistic Directors Stephanie Heston and Alexander Smirnov are honored to have Linda Virr-Niemackl, former Director of Topeka Ballet, join the permanent faculty of Kansas Ballet. “Linda’s extensive professional background as a performer, educator and arts administrator is absolutely an invaluable asset to our organization," said Heston. “With the new, more centralized location we are able to offer high quality professional ballet training to a wider base of Topekans. There is a huge amount of positive energy and contagious excitement in our studios and hallways this month!”
The non-profit Kansas Ballet Company is enjoying significant growth as well. "Kansas Ballet is growing by leaps and bounds,” said Chairman of the Board Joseph Pennington. “Topeka has embraced classical ballet. Audiences love our standard of excellence and parents trust their children are learning more than dance moves-- things like teamwork, self-confidence, and communication skills."
“The annual summer intensive is just one example of how Kansas Ballet furthers the education of our students as well as provides enrichment to our community through classical ballet,” Heston said. “Topeka deserves high-quality classical ballet performances and education typically found in other capital cities around the world, and we are passionate about making that a reality.”
In only three short years of operation, Kansas Ballet has brought over 10 visiting guest artists to teach and perform in Topeka as well as provided over 40 free shows in and around our community.
Tickets to the July 25th Summer Gala at Topeka High School, 7pm are $10 for ages 13-59, $8 for ages 3-12 and 60+, and $25 for a special pre-show dinner at Pepe & Chelas with VIP seating at the performance. Tickets can be purchased through Tututix.com (visit kansasballet.com for a direct link), by calling 855-222-2849 or at the door on performance day (VIP tickets must be reserved in advance).