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Welcome to American Midwest Ballet’s digital home for our Going Solo series – free to educators and partners in the community who value dance and the creative impact that movement has on students of all ages. Our mission is to inspire students to explore their own creative relationship with dance and strengthen their muscles and imaginations. 

An ongoing initiative that releases new dance films every few weeks, Going Solo embraces the challenges of dancing during a global pandemic by combining talented artists with renowned choreographers. Students are invited to watch a Going Solo work (or several!) and pair it with our Find Your Song study guides to engage with movement, critical thinking, and creative expression. Workshops led by AMB professional dancers are also available for further enrichment. To get alerts when new content is added, arrange for a workshop, or to ask questions, please email education@amballet.org

You can download a printable version of this page to save for reference:

Find Your Song Study Guides

These guides provide supplementary information and enrichment activities to help students get more out of the ballet experience. Going Solo study guides are available for elementary school and middle school/high school levels.

Going Solo films

These films are intended to be used for educational purposes only. Please do not download, distribute, or alter them without permission.

The Dying Swan 
Classical Ballet | Symphony Collaboration

Created in 1905 through a memorable collaboration between classical innovator Michel Fokine and iconic ballerina Anna Pavlova, The Dying Swan is a masterful blend of technique and expression. This performance, staged by Matthew Lovegood and danced by Alexandra Hoffman to Saint-Saëns’ poignant score, was created through a virtual collaboration with the Omaha Symphony, featuring principal cellist Paul Ledwon. Lance Glenn’s insightful film puts the viewer onstage with Alexandra as she experiences the emotions of performing this pivotal work.

The Sun Rises Inside
Contemporary Dance | Unique Filming

The sun is warm, the air is mild, and a gentle breeze rustles the leaves. It’s a beautiful day for a walk in the woods… a feeling choreographer Kelanie Murphy sets out to capture in her Going Solo work, The Sun Rises Inside. She worked closely with filmmaker Lance Glenn to create dance choreography that takes full advantage of the film medium, with four individual dancers’ performances united through cinematic techniques.

Trains
Jazz | Historical Style

Trains, Erika Overturff’s carefree, jazzy solo for dancer Cameron Miller, with trumpeter Doyle Tipler as special guest, captures the sense of liberation that travel, music, and dancing all can bring. In the film, Erika walks us through how the spark of an idea changes and grows until you end up with the final product. Cinematographer Lance Glenn filmed on location at the Rails West Museum in Council Bluffs to evoke the golden age of rail travel.

Order in the Chaos
Contemporary Dance | Choreographer Collaboration

Graceful yet intense, Order in the Chaos embodies the quest to come to terms with a tumultuous world. Guest choreographer Seneca Montgomery and AMB company artist Anna Swenson collaborated to create this piece as a way of dealing with current circumstances. “You want to escape,” says Anna. “You want to be free of everything that’s happening, but this is the world that we’re in and these are the things we have to deal with.” Seneca says, “It’s trying to find your order in this chaos.”

Pithos
Classical Ballet | Greek Mythology

The box seems so small, so delicate. Surely there could be no harm in opening it? This fateful moment of decision in a young woman’s life has come down to us through almost 3,000 years of poetic history as the story of Pandora’s Box. Choreographer Claire Goodwillie has chosen it as the basis for her Going Solo work, a short storytelling ballet in the classical style, danced by Alyssa Grimsley.

A Year I Won’t Forget
Contemporary Dance | Unique Filming

Choreographer and performer Erika Overturff gives 2020 her own distinctive send-off in this work filmed by Lance Glenn. Unlike other films in this series, A Year I Won’t Forget was filmed in one continuous shot. Intricate choreography was needed for the dancer, cinematographer, and dog handler to get everything lined up just right!

En Dehors
Contemporary Ballet | Original Music

Choreographer/performer Rebecca Brenner‘s inspiration came from the music of Paul Vera — an Austin, Texas-based composer who also happens to be Rebecca’s cousin. When she asked if he could edit some music from one of his albums for her, he replied: “Actually, why don’t I make something brand-new?” Using Paul’s original score, Rebecca explores the contrast of rugged and beautiful in her new work.

A Slow Drag
Contemporary Dance | Choreographer Collaboration

Created in collaboration with AMB guest choreographer Edgar L. Page of Denver, Colorado, this piece follows dancer Claire Goodwillie in three distinct spaces: studio, stage, and nature, as she explores through dance the emotional challenges of living in a time when time itself feels uncertain.