Ballet Kelowna returns to the stage with audience after 21 months

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Ballet Kelowna returns to the stage
After almost two years off the stage Ballet Kelowna is welcoming an audience once again. Sydney Morton sat in on a rehearsal to give us a sneak peek at what’s in store. – Oct 31, 2021

The dancers at Ballet Kelowna are making their much-anticipated return to the stage after 21 months without performing to a live audience.

“Experiencing dance live, it’s very different. When dance is on TV or on film from your living room, the energy isn’t quite there and you don’t really see the nuance of the movement when you’re watching it on TV,” said Simone Orlando, Ballet Kelowna CEO and Artistic Director.

Three works will be mounted. One is The Forever Part by Kirsten Wicklund, “a poignant ensemble piece inspired by daydreams, longing, and the overwhelming notion of forever,” states a press release.

The second is Petrushka by Heather Dotto, about a puppet that desires to be human.

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“This layered, up-tempo response to Igor Stravinsky’s original score makes use of exaggerated gestures and mime to reinvigorate the work’s clownish foundation,” states a press release.

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And then the third piece is Robert Stephen’s Celestial Mechanics.

“In his first work for the Company, award-winning choreographer Robert Stephen promises to stir the heart and awaken the imagination with a nuanced, musical work for six dancers exploring our shared human experience,” states a press release.

“I was very much drawn to the piano sonata by Beethoven and its centrepiece is called Funeral March on the Death of a Hero and given the state of the world and that lost that we’ve all experienced over the last couple years,” said Stephen.

“It seems like a very delicate subject matter to approach but it felt like a really timely and beautiful one.”

To top off their grand return, two of the dancers will mark their 10th anniversary with the company when they step back onto the stage.

“I’m excited to be on the stage but especially with an audience, it will be really exciting and maybe emotional,” said Desiree Bortolussi, Ballet Kelowna dancer.

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“It’s been so long since we’ve been together, that’s what I’m most excited about,” said Kurt Werner, Ballet Kelowna dancer. “It’s just the chance to come together.”

Ballet Kelowna returns to the stage Nov. 5 and 6. For tickets visit

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