Intermission producer and Washington Ballet artist Katherine Barkman. Photo by Procopio Photography

On 10th December ten international ballet stars will make the world their stage and join forces to launch a first-of-its kind virtual production in support of a common cause: raising awareness for children in crisis.

Raise the curtain for InterMission – a unique online dance production created to raise funds that will help provide disadvantaged children with a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm in the world’s hardest-to-reach places.

Presented in partnership with Save the Children, InterMission will be streamed to audiences all over the world via YouTube for free, while providing viewers with secure and convenient opportunities for donating directly to the global charity throughout the program.

Dancing for the future

Organized by international ballet principals Sebastian Vinet and Katherine Barkman, InterMission was the favorable, yet totally unexpected outcome of seeing their previously crammed performance calendars wiped clean by the pandemic.

When it became obvious that live productions were not returning onstage anytime soon, the two artists decided to find a more innovative way of presenting Dance that could adapt and evolve with the new normal.

Thus was born InterMission — a unique digital performance experience with the purpose of helping improve the lives of children in crisis while celebrating the beauty, diversity, and hope that can still be found in a world that is on pause.

“With all the uncertainty and pain we are facing in these challenging times, we are deeply concerned about the next generation – not only of the arts but of the world,” says Mr. Vinet. “Children represent the future of the world and of the arts, so by giving them the support and the right opportunities to succeed, not only we are helping to improve human lives, we are also nurturing our future artists.”

As a global foundation, Save the Children believes that every child deserves a future. Since its founding over 100 years ago, the organization has changed the lives of over 1 billion children. In the United States and around the world, Save the Children gives children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm. They do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share.

“It’s bigger than ballet,” Ms. Barkman affirms. “The show is a collective effort to uplift, to inspire, and to unite those who truly believe in the healing power of Dance.”

Ten dancers, one cause

Fortunately, it didn’t take long for them to find steadfast allies from the dance world who shared the same advocacy.

The online spectacle will showcase breathtaking performances by top ballet principals Daniel Ulbricht (New York City Ballet), Beckanne Sisk and Chase O’Connell (Ballet West), Julian MacKay (San Francisco Ballet), Katherine Barkman (The Washington Ballet), Lloyd Knight (Martha Graham Dance Company), and Tess Voelker (Netherlands Dance Theater); InterMission director and international guest artist Sebastian Vinet, dancer-choreographer Eduardo Zuñiga, and actress-dancer Juliet Doherty.

Filmed and performed safely in breathtaking locations across three continents, InterMission captures the splendor of nature, the joy of movement, and the freedom of self-expression that can never be taken away by fear or force.

According to Mr. Vinet, they are blessed to have worked with colleagues who happily welcomed the opportunity to help with openness and generosity.

“It wasn’t easy to find dancers who were willing to do the incredibly difficult job of performing during a global pandemic and at the same time, adapting their work to my artistic vision of how I wanted their pieces to be filmed,” he relates. “It was an amazing experience to collaborate with friendly, humble, and honest dancers — people who are inspiring and who are also fun to work with.”

Adds Ms. Barkman, who is also the show’s executive producer: “We chose dancers who represent excellence in the industry, both onstage and off. It wasn’t so much about fame or recognition but rather who that person really was and what they had to say through their dancing. Each artist is truly unique and brings something completely different to the screen. The most extraordinary thing for me is the kindness and goodness each of these dancers embodies. I am so grateful for what they represent, not just as artists but as human beings creating something beautiful for an aching world.”

InterMission will be available for viewing worldwide beginning December 10 at 8pm EST over YouTube and other streaming platforms.

Follow InterMission on Facebook and on Instagram for more information and updates.