What It Is:
“Ballet Magnificat! was founded in 1986. Magnificat is Latin for “to magnify Him.” It’s derived from “Mary’s Song” of praise in the 1st Chapter of the Gospel of Luke when she first learned she was to be the mother of the Messiah. Ballet Magnificat! is an arts organization dedicated to presenting the good news of Jesus Christ to the whole world. Our professional touring companies perform nationally and internationally, ministering to audiences in the United States as well as Canada, Belgium, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, Greece, Singapore, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico.” (from Facebook fan page)
In short: I LOVED it!
We happened upon a poster for Ballet Magnificat! recently, and I jumped at the chance to take my girls. First, they both love ballet and have not yet been to a professional performance. Second, they were performing “Deliver Us” the story of Exodus set to the music from the movie, “Prince of Egypt.” That will fit in with our homeschool curriculum, which is reviewing the major stories of the Bible this year. Third, Easter and Passover are in less than two weeks! What perfect timing!
I honestly had no idea what to expect, or if my girls would be able be still long enough to watch. But they were mesmerized, and thankfully there was a child-friendly audience and very patient people around us that put up with the sound of the million questions my girls asked during the show.
I expected to enjoy the dancing and the music. I did not expect to fall in love with the story all over again, or spend a night just praising God while watching these wonderful dancers worship through music. Really. Even the local groups, who performed two different preludes to the second act, filled the auditorium with just pure joy.
And it wasn’t just that the Ballet Magnificat! troupe was technically proficient and did complicated and awe-inspiring dancing and lifts (though they did). It was that these performers FELT their performances. And they made you feel it too. Really, when was the last time you went to a ballet that wasn’t, well, . . . cold? Ballet Magnificat wasn’t. Honestly, warmth and their love of performing just exuded from every fiber of their being.
Frankly, it made me wish I was younger, in better shape, and could just join them up onstage myself. I wish I had known about this fabulous group when I was younger and still performing (though, I honestly would never have been good enough to fit in with these extremely talented dancers).
With all that said, some parts were a little graphic for my crew, ages three and five. The scene with the slave-driver with a whip “beating” the Jewish slaves prompted a ton of questions from both, and my three-year-old is still asking, “But why were they beating the other? That was mean.” And I had no idea that the crucifixion was worked into the end of the story and would be so realistic. It’s not that I had a problem with either scene, but I do wish I had known and could have prepared my girls ahead of time. Nevertheless, we have been able to have very good discussions about it since. Which means the show left quite an impression, even beyond my daughters’ love of dance.
Here is their tour schedule, and if you’re one of my international buddies, be sure to check it out as well; they are touring internationally in the next few months!