Valley philanthropists launch Ballet Arizona coronavirus relief fund
PHOENIX – Two Valley philanthropists have launched a relief fund to assist dancers at Ballet Arizona amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Jacquie and Bennett Dorrance started the Be Our Bridge Recovering and Relief fund to support dancers in the company.
“Especially in times of crisis, we protect what we love and value and do our best to help others,” Jacquie Dorrance said in a press release Wednesday.
The goal is to raise $1 million to help Ballet Arizona through the pandemic until they can return to performances. The Dorrances made the first donation to the fund of $250,000.
According to Ballet Arizona’s website, performance revenues have been halted, tuition has bene cut in half and donations have dropped by 25%.
Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Ballet Arizona will not proceed with its originally planned fall season. Shows like Director’s Choice, Giselle and the annual production of The Nutcracker will not be performed.
“While our season might not look like seasons past, we hope the community will provide the support needed at this time to ensure heralded productions like The Nutcracker, Ballet Under the Stars and An Evening at Desert Botanical Garden continue to be artistic bedrocks in the Valley for seasons to come,” Ballet Arizona Executive Director Samantha Turner said in the press release.
The dance company has launched a free Ballet Arizona Book Club, which meets quarterly on Zoom. It also hosts Sunday Streaming, a 24-hour period where ballet fans can watch performances from over the years on YouTube.