American Ballet Theatre Will Offer Outdoor Performances Across the Country This Summer

American Ballet Theatre is hitting the road this summer, taking their performances outdoors with shows for audiences from Nebraska to Virginia.

On July 1, the “ABT Across America” tour will kick off in Lincoln, Nebraska and will head to Iowa City, Chicago, Minneapolis, St. Louis, Charleston, and Middleburg, Virginia in a caravan of six sleeper buses and three production trucks.

“As necessity is the mother of invention, I am delighted to announce ABT Across America,” Kevin McKenzie, the company’s artistic director, said in a press release statement. “For the past year, we have been pursuing our mission of reaching the widest possible audience through virtual programs and digital channels. With ‘ABT Across America,’ we will go beyond the digital divide to provide access to live performance experiences. The planning of this tour has galvanized our staff and company, and we hope that these performances will be joyful and uplifting for communities nationwide.”

The New York-based ballet company’s three-week summer series — inspired by its tours done in the 1940s and 1950s — will take 20 ABT dancers and 28 support crew on a 3,100-mile journey across 14 states to perform for socially distanced audiences.

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The tour will end on July 21 with a performance at New York City’s Rockefeller Center, where the company made its debut public performance in 1940.

The performances will be free in most cities and performed on a custom stage that folds out of an 18-wheeler truck.

At each city, the company will perform a 50-minute show (without an intermission). In addition to each performance, ABT is planning family activities, fitness classes and community engagement programs at each stop along the tour. All activities will follow local precautions for COVID-19 safety.

For more information about the tour, including information about tickets, visit the ABT website.

Cailey Rizzo is a contributing writer for Travel Leisure, currently based in Brooklyn. You can find her on Twitter, Instagram, or at caileyrizzo.com.

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