The process and partnerships behind the spark

In the newly established role as Partnership Manager, I have been charged with identifying and realizing opportunities that both further our mission and make Ballet Memphis more visible and meaningfully engaged in the community. I am surprised how many people in the Memphis community do not really know who we are and what we do. I will admit that as someone with a background in visual art, I am still a relatively new ballet enthusiast. I have found myself more moved and engaged by dance than I ever anticipated through interacting with and watching these incredible dancers. And I now feel compelled to share that experience with everyone. 

Motivated then by professional ambitions and personal experience, I am helping to launch a new monthly series called spark: conversations with Ballet Memphis in collaboration with Crosstown Arts. This series is intended to start a creative dialogue in Memphis beyond our scheduled performances. It will be interdisciplinary, collaborative and continually changing. We are not solely interested in talking about ballet—though we do love it oh so much—but we also care about different creative processes. We care about film, theater, music, art, and, of course, Memphis. I sincerely hope that these sentiments come through with spark. 

Our first spark conversation happens in conjunction with our February production of Family Matters. Psychologist and professor at the University of Memphis, Robert Neimeyer, PhD, choreographer Julia Adam and dancer Virginia Pilgrim will discuss some of the heavy, though-provoking characters and themes in this mixed repertoire show. You will see some very tense and dynamic relationships in this show that will make for a really interesting discussion. 

In the coming months, we will also explore themes such as diversity in our artistic community as we think about Playhouse on the Square’s upcoming Angels in America, as well as the development of characters and narrative on the stage versus film. We are just getting started and are very excited to explore this new forum with you. Come create some spark with us! 

Lauren Kennedy, Partnership Manager, Ballet Memphis 

Posted by Ballet Memphis at 4:22 PM
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