The ocean asks you, “May I have this dance?”

April 26th, 2013 azgardens

Harlequin and Columbine from the mime theater at Tivoli, Denmark.According to Wikipedia, “Ballet is a type of performance dance that originated in the Italian Renaissance courts of the 15th century and later developed into a concert dance form in France and Russia.”


Not many would associate aquariums and the ocean with the ballet, but dancers from the Long Beach Ballet Academy—one of Southern California’s leading classical institutions—is hoping to change that. After all, the ocean is mesmerizing and hypnotic much like a ballet performance. They are, aesthetically speaking, very similar.


In order to promote ocean awareness and marine life conservation, especially man’s use of fossil fuels, Long Beach’s Aquarium of the Pacific has teamed up with the Long Beach Ballet Academy. With a backdrop of ocean life, dancers from the academy perform interpretive dance telling the story of not just the ocean, but of the many sea creatures that call it home, all while educating audiences on the negative effects man has had on the ocean.


In the article, “Ballet At Aquarium Offered Important Message,” Laurann Wakefield of Gazettes writes, “Ocean life is a dance, requiring balance, tempo and choreography.” Aquariums mirror the ocean and they too require balance, tempo and choreography. A successful aquarium achieves all three.


Similar to the physical tug of the tides, the Long Beach dancers tug at an audience’s collective heart, moving them in ways not thought possible. Perhaps there is an ocean or, better yet, an aquarium in each of us. We just have to turn inward and drown. What do you think?


The performance at the Aquarium of the Pacific is one you do not want to miss, especially if you are in the Long Beach area. Not many performances combine art, dance, science, conservation and education. At Arizona Aquatic Gardens, we encourage similar performances everywhere! You can find Wakefield’s review here.




*Image courtesy of Malene Thyssen

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