Executive Director’s Notes: One Thousand Pieces, Future Memory, and Little mortal jump

Dear PNB Subscribers, 

Every fall since PNB’s founding, we have welcomed back audiences with the same back-to-school-season excitement: a fresh start, new faces, and the shared anticipation of being together in the same space. We’ve never, though, issued this welcome after a hiatus of 18 months. Our September welcome today is imbued with the poignancy of our long separation, and such gratitude for all you’ve done to sustain us during this time. You’ve retained your investment in us through digital subscriptions and contributions to our Relief Fund and Future Fund campaigns, among other initiatives. You wrote letters, emails, and Facebook posts about the role of PNB in your lives and the inspiration you found in our digital programs and the evolution of our Company. In the midst of so much reinvention and shoring up of resources, you kept us going, moving toward this moment of gathering again. For those of you joining us as a digital subscriber, we’re thrilled to see you too! 

In mid-August we welcomed Company dancers back in an outdoor meeting at Seattle Center. Such an extraordinary thing to once again experience proximity, in-person community, and the start of something we previously took for granted. It is difficult to describe what it means to facilitate the return of work for artists whose lives and relatively short careers have been upended by Covid. We are fiercely determined to create an environment where, despite everything, our artists, students, and staff teams can thrive and feel successful. 

We are not the same PNB we were in March of 2020, and as we incrementally return to more normalized operations, you will see and feel the changes we’ve made. Our stage has been dark but we’ve been far from idle, evaluating every aspect of our business to ensure the greatest measures of inclusion and belonging for all—despite current safety restrictions—who wish to participate. We remain deeply grounded in artistic excellence and a culture defined by joy, empathy, and responsible practices. We continue to learn from and contribute to Seattle’s phenomenal arts and culture community. And we continue to learn from and be inspired by you, our most enthusiastic friends and fans. Again, a heartfelt welcome back from all of us at PNB. 

Warm regards, 

Ellen Walker
Executive Director

Featured photo: Ezra Thomson in Alejandro Cerrudo’s Silent Ghost, photo © Angela Sterling.