Ballet Ariel’s Carmen – A Year Long Journey
May 10, 2021 (Denver, Colorado): More than a year ago, in what would ultimately
become a year-long odyssey, Ballet Ariel’s professional company began rehearsing an original
ballet version of the classic opera Carmen, as resident choreographer Gregory Gonzales created a
masterful re-imaging of the classic opera set in the 1930s. Weeks into rehearsal last spring, all
activity was suspended as the country shutdown.
Ballet Ariel has been an institution in the Denver arts community for 22 years. Ballet Ariel’s
founder and Artistic Director Ilena Norton was determined to continue providing exceptional
original ballets and superbly restaged classics despite the challenges and limitations brought on
by the pandemic. Ballet Ariel succeeded in presenting a nearly full season of performances
beginning with The Nutcracker Suite in December. Undaunted, Director Ilena Norton and her
creative team skillfully and seamlessly adapted the full- length production into a beautiful and
captivating ballet. As the Covid-19 virus surged in December, Ballet Ariel pivoted to a live-
streamed production enjoyed by audiences and classrooms throughout the metro area.
Beginning in April, the company hit the stage with live, in-person performances of their original
Cinderella, shortened to one-act yet still a stunningly beautiful narrative ballet. Eight socially
distanced shows were presented at three venues across the Metro area.
Now, two short weeks later, and after a year filled with many trials and successes, Ballet Ariel is
coming full circle to bring its original Carmen Suite to Denver Metro audiences. Norton, the
organization’s tenacious Artistic and Executive Director has carried the company through this
year to finish what was begun more than twelve months ago.
Join Ballet Ariel at 7:30 pm on Saturday, May 15th and 3:00 pm on Sunday, May 16th at Cleo
Parker Robinson Theatre, at 119 Park Ave West, Denver, CO 80205. Tickets can be purchased
on the Ballet Ariel website, www.balletariel.org, or by phone, 303-945-4388.
To protect all patrons, Ballet Ariel will be complying with all state and local Covid-19