Ballet Arts Academy Performs After COVID-19

Gabi Wilson, Reporter

Ballet Arts Academy, a dance studio in Missoula, had their end of year performances on May 15 and 16. There were two performances over one weekend. One was for Ballet Arts Academy Studio Company and the other was for all students at Ballet Arts Academy. Many Hellgate students as well as students from schools all over Missoula attend Ballet Arts Academy. The students who performed had been practicing their dances for months, some since as early as January. 

Ballet Arts Studio Company is comprised of members who are in levels 4, 5, and advanced ballet at Ballet Arts. If they want to be in Company, they have to audition. Company rehearsals started in February and went to the beginning of May. There are several dances that the dancers were placed in after auditions. The categories were modern, ballet, contemporary, pointe, river dancing, jazz and musical theatre. 

Nora Peregrine, a sophomore at Hellgate, said, “I started going to Ballet Arts when I was probably around 7 years old.” When asked about the turnout of the recent performances, she said, “I thought the performances were super fun and it was exciting to be back on stage with an actual audience since Covid started.” 

Ballet Arts Academy had to close for Covid last year, which meant there had been no performances since May 2019. Peregrine continued, “I like Company because it’s more time at the studio dancing. You become a lot closer with other dancers and it’s nice to see all your hard work from classes pay off!” Studio Company is a large time commitment because it requires weekend rehearsals and more hours in the studio. 

Clara Haun, a senior at Sentinel, said, “I’ve gone to Ballet Arts Academy for fifteen years, since I was 3. The recitals were always very exciting, especially when I was younger and we got all the cute costumes. The Company recitals were always fun because they showed a different side of dance that we didn’t do for the normal recital.” Company performances are separate from the regular recitals, this is fun for the students and parents. Haun continued, “I also loved that company let me sing and grow not just as a dancer but as a performer in general.” Haun would not only dance but sing as well. 

Everyone who performed May 15 and 16 did very well. All of the dancers worked hard and their work paid off. Dance is a large commitment for these students. Hopefully next year the audience gets opened to a larger crowd.