Dancing in the streets: Ballet stars perform in empty Amsterdam


AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Six dancers from the Dutch National Ballet headed out into the empty streets of Amsterdam this week to perform their parts in a piece of choreography inspired by the coronavirus lockdown.

Each put on a solo performance out in the open, some in front of landmarks including the Amstel Hotel and the Eye film museum.

Footage of each piece will be edited together into a film titled “Gently Quiet” that will be streamed online by early May, the National Ballet said.

“I like this project as we can show what we want to do and what we are waiting for to do again,” said 25-year old dancer Yvonne Slingerland, who performed her piece beside the Amstel river on Friday.

“Even if we are in this weird situation we are still moving and we are still trying to get to the audience. I think art right now is really important for everyone.”

All bars, restaurants, museums and other public places have been shut in the Netherlands since March 15 in an attempt to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.

The National Ballet has cancelled all its performances until June 1 and stopped its dancers from rehearsing together. Many have resorted to practicing at home.

“This is our way of bringing a poetic production, despite not being able to work together in our studio or to perform in front of an audience”, National Ballet spokesman Richard Heideman said.

Reporting by Hilde Verweij; Writing by Bart Meijer; Editing by Andrew Heavens