4.28.21 UPDATE: Due to weather forecasts, Ballet Arkansas Presents Live at the Plaza classes and performances scheduled for Sunday, May 2, at Argenta Plaza (510 Main Street, North Little Rock) will be postponed. A “pop-up” performance will be held Friday, April 30, at 6 p.m. at Argenta Plaza. Recreational classes and performances will still occur on Saturday, May 1, as planned.
Ballet Arkansas Presents Live at the Plaza is a two-weekend educational and performance program in North Little Rock sponsored by North Little Rock Convention & Visitors Bureau, City of North Little Rock, First Orion, ACANSA Arts Festival of the South, Taggart Architects, Fit 2 Live and Argenta Downtown Council.
“Live at the Plaza performances feature seven world-premieres and highlight both international and Arkansas choreographers,” said Michael Fothergill, Ballet Arkansas’s Executive and Artistic Director. “Two of the contemporary works were created in the winter of 2019 and this will be the first time they will be performed, while five of the works were created by Ballet Arkansas choreographers and dancers.”
Live performances by Ballet Arkansas on Friday, April 30, and Saturday, May 1, will feature a “Raymonda” suite; Hannah Bradshaw’s “Solace”; Paul Tillman’s “Echo”, and a contemporary world premiere titled “Aperture” by international choreographers Alice Klock and Florian Lochner’s of Flockworks. The finale of each performance will be “Water Work,” a new work choreographed by Deanna Stanton featuring the Argenta Plaza water wall. All performances are free and open to the public. Attendees may bring their own lawn chairs and are encouraged to patronize North Little Rock restaurants before and after the performances. The plaza is located within the Argenta Outdoor Dining District, so downtown restaurant patrons may carry libations to Argenta Plaza.
Morning recreational classes, sponsored by ACANSA Arts Festival of the South, will be held 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Saturday, May 1, in front of the Argenta Plaza stage. Classes include Pilates, Stretch & Strengthen, Jazz at the Plaza and Ballet on the Grounds. All classes are free and open to all ages and abilities. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own yoga mats and bottled water as needed.
“Viewing a performance is a source of inspiration and joy for many, but Ballet Arkansas Presents ‘Live at the Plaza’ goes a step farther by presenting experiential opportunities for the public to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for the art form of dance,” Fothergill said. “We hope that the public will join Ballet Arkansas dancers in a series of movement-based classes for all ages in a variety of disciplines.”
Arkansas Department of Health guidelines will be enforced for a safe learning and viewing experience. Attendees will be asked to practice social-distancing and wear masks when closer than six feet. Dancers will be masked and will maintain appropriate distance from audience members.
Updated Schedule: Live at the Plaza (Weekend #1)
Friday, April 30 (NEW)
- 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. | Evening Performance
Saturday, May 1
- 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. | Pilates at the Plaza
- 9 a.m. – 10 a.m. | Stretch & Strengthen
- 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. | Jazz at the Plaza
- 11 a.m. – 12 p.m. | Ballet on the Grounds
- 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. | Matinee Performance
- 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. | Evening Performance
Sunday, May 2
- Classes and performances postponed (dates TBA)
- Pilates at the Plaza (ideal for ages 12+): An invigorating start to the day filled with rejuvenating meditation, stretching, and core work.
- Stretch and Strengthen (ideal for ages 10+): A cardio workout for all levels, blended with stretching designed to align the body and activate core muscle groups. Multiple levels offered.
- Jazz at the Plaza (ideal for ages 9+): An upbeat jazz class designed to delight the body and boost energy and metabolism. Multiple levels offered.
- Ballet on the Grounds (beginners and adult dancers ages 12+): An introduction to the fundamentals of ballet in a stress-free environment.
Ballet Arkansas will release the new dates for Sunday’s postponed classes and performance before the second weekend of Live at the Plaza, which will be held Friday, May 21 – Sunday, May 23. For updates, visit www.balletarkansas.org/plaza.
“The arts are crucial to quality of life in North Little Rock,” said Karen Trevino, President & CEO of the North Little Rock CVB. “We are excited to partner with Ballet Arkansas and North Little Rock government, businesses and nonprofit organizations to bring Argenta Plaza to life this year. We hope the program will bring the local community together as well as attract visitors by highlighting North Little Rock’s thriving arts and culture.”
Plan a Weekend Trip
Before and after classes and performances, Live at the Plaza attendees are encouraged to dine local at one of North Little Rock’s excellent restaurants, several of which are within easy walking distance of Argenta Plaza. Argenta Farmers Market will also be set up at Argenta Plaza from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 1.
Saturday, May 1 is also 501 Day, a new event where locals and visitors of the 501 area code are encouraged to celebrate all things local. Join us in North Little Rock by participating in Ballet Arkansas Presents Live at the Plaza, enjoying deals at local attractions and businesses, and joining a 501 Day event at Burns Park.