There were a few moments just over a year ago, when we looked at each other and wondered if PNB would survive the circumstances surrounding us – no dance, no music, no ballet lessons, no revenue and no connection with community – especially mourning those treasured moments when we assembled at McCaw Hall to watch dance together.
Our greatest apprehension came from thinking about the more than 800 names in the PNB payroll system; how do we lead these colleagues and provide for them through the most uncertain time in our history? Add to this a national reckoning on issues of race, a contentious political divide, and all the fear and stress that marked 2020. As we felt tectonic plates shifting beneath our feet, we chose to double down on our greatest asset: the community and connection which define PNB’s organizational culture. In doing so we identified a stronger force within all of us at PNB – to use every resource within our reach to offer solace, inspiration and art. Not having any sense of what would happen next, we released these offerings into the digital unknown. And you responded. During this grave time, a groundswell of support and gratitude came from you. It arrived in emails, phone calls, cards and letters, one memorable drive-by donation, pledges to our Future Fund, and subscription purchases for our newly minted digital season. At our darkest hour, you emboldened us, and we in turn could offer reassurances to our artists and staff. We will never forget the lift, and promise to return the favor time and time again, season after season. Please accept this Encore Performance, which we have always referred to as “family night”, as a small token of our love and appreciation.
Peter & Ellen
Featured photo: Laura Tisserand and Jerome Tisserand in Edwaard Liang’s The Veil Between Worlds, photo © Lindsay Thomas.
Photo: Ellen Walker and Peter Boal in 2019, photo © Roger Miller.
Thank you all for a remarkable season. Your determination and go forward, no matter what! attitude carried us along for a unforgettable ride. Every performance was splendid, some truly poignant and many unabashedly fun and funny!
We look forward to being back at McCall – in person with friends, dancers, musicians and the backstage pros – everyone who makes the magic happen.
With great appreciation,
Jim and Julie McElroy