NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Dancers from the New York City Ballet were center-stage on Monday, but this performance was taking place the NYU Rusk Rehabilitation Center.
One of the featured performers was 16-year-old Christina Viso.
“Used to do ballet. I was en pointe and everything so it’s been really exciting to get to do it, even though I’m in a wheelchair,” Viso told CBS2’s Alice Gainer.
A virus changed everything for Viso two and a half years ago.
“It left me immobile from my shoulders down. I couldn’t move my head, anything at all,” she said.
Monday’s movement workshop was taught by dancers Savannah Lowery and Craig Hall.
“Broken down a lot of the movements, taught them a little bit of the choreography, especially focused on the pantomime,” Lowery said.
It helps with more than just the physical.
“It makes them feel special that people out there haven’t forgotten about them. It gives them something fun to talk about with their peers,” Senior Recreation Therapist, Lisa Del Guidice said.
It was the second workshop held this month. Children who could leave the facility were treated to a performance of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at Lincoln Center.
“Think it just goes back to the joy of dance that makes me appreciate to get out there and inspire people,” Hall said.
He said professional dancers weren’t the only ones teaching on Monday.
“They taught me to listen. You know I think a lot of times as a dancer you get out there and do your thing,” he said.
Hall added that if dance is in your heart, these kids proved that no matter the obstacle, you can do it again.
Both the kids and the rehab center hope the partnership will continue in the future.