It is always a beehive of activity at the OBT studios when we are about to open a show, but the level of energy and activity over here right now is off the charts.
The devo, marketing and administrative staff are madly orchestrating this massive fundraising effort we're undertaking. The atmosphere back there in the offices is intense and focused. The latest news and numbers are filtered throughout the building as they come in, and we all cheer when we hear of another generous donation or positive sign.
In the studio, it's equally intense. It's an absolute blessing to be able to focus on something else--- not money, not deficits or bills or deadlines--- and just do what we can do best, what we are here to do and what will (we hope) see us through this crisis. It's a beautiful thing, to be able to escape the world's problems (even when those problems are threatening to bang down the door), go into the studio, and work.
What is different now is the inescapable recognition of the importance of our work in the studio and onstage. While it is in the nature of every dancer to never settle for less than perfection (which is why we never stop working), right now there is a sense of higher stakes. When we are asking the people of our city to consider what the loss of their ballet company would mean to them, we need to be sure to prove that they do need us. We cannot afford to be anything less than stellar and heartstopping when we perform this weekend.
And I think our audiences will agree with me, after they see these performances, that they have just witnessed a theatrical experience of intense passion and beauty, beyond what could have been imagined.