The family-friendly production Ballet Toybox returns March 19 to the Aronoff Center for the Arts, showcasing the Cincinnati Ballet Second Company, this year with a twist: not only are they performing Swan Lake, Jr., there is also a sensory-friendly option. 

Swan Lake, Jr. is a retelling of the classic Swan Lake, one of the most famous ballets of all time. The original tells the story of Odette, turned into a swan by a wicked sorcerer, and the charming Prince Siegfried, who falls in love with her. Tchaikovsky’s recognizable score accompanies the story of romance and mistaken identity. Suitable for families with children ten and under, Swan Lake, Jr. clocks in at under an hour, features narration, and promises interactive opportunities for audience members. 

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​Cincinnati Ballet Second Company dancers. Photo provided. 

The sensory-friendly performance will be performed at 5pm, designed to create a welcoming and inviting experience for patrons and children with sensory sensitivities or specific needs. These adjustments include gentle lighting and sound, on-hand specialists, and a flexible, open-door theater environment, complete with designated break spaces. 

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Cincinnati Ballet Second Company dancers with Director of Second Company Suzette Boyer Webb. Photo provided. 

Cincinnati Ballet Second Company dancers, students of Cincinnati Ballet’s Otto M. Budig Academy and Ballet Moves students join to bring Swan Lake, Jr. to life. Second Company members are up-and-coming dancers, studying under the tutelage of the artistic staff at Cincinnati Ballet and frequently featured in Cincinnati Ballet’s productions. This group of talented young dancers from around the world also act as the organization’s education outreach ambassadors, bringing the joy of dance to thousands of students and community members across the region. 

Ballet Moves is a class designed to foster a love of dance and creative expression for individuals with specific needs.  

“We always strive to bring our programming full circle. The Ballet Toybox program is a great introduction for everyone! We take breaks to move our bodies, and do a ‘little swan boot camp’ between acts. It’s a fun beginning to what will hopefully be a lifelong love of the arts," said Julie Sunderland, Director of Education and Outreach. 
Tickets are $20. Tickets for the Sensory-Friendly performance are only available via phone. To purchase or for additional details, call 513.621.5282.