The Velveteen Rabbit originated in 1922 as a children's book written by Margery Williams and illustrated by William Nicholson. It chronicles the story of a stuffed rabbit's desire to become real through the love of his owner. The Velveteen Rabbit has been awarded the IRA/CBC Children's Choice award and based on a 2007 online poll, the National Education Association voted the book #28 on the “Teachers” Top 100 Books for Children.
ODC’s celebrated interpretation of The Velveteen Rabbit was first developed in 1986 and since its premiere, has toured nationally and performed annually in the SF Bay Area as ODC/Dance’s family holiday production, drawing audiences of all ages to experience the magic of this treasured story, told through dance. The Velveteen Rabbit is directed and choreographed by KT Nelson, garnering her the Isadora Duncan Dance Award four times; in 2001 for Sustained Achievement for her work on the Rabbit and she received the California Arts Education “Daisy” Award for her work with young people. Since 2005, ODC/Dance’s “Buddies for Bunnies” outreach program has served close to 17,000 students from Title-1 and low-income SF Bay Area schools by combining the inspirational impact of professional performance of The Velveteen Rabbit with essential educational outreach.
Now, ODC brings this classic tale of love, acceptance and resilience to students across the nation in this virtual offering where The Velveteen Rabbit has the ability to truly become real in children’s minds, hearts and behaviors. Coupled with standards-based curriculum and demonstration videos developed by Dr. Gale Gorke and Kellee McQuinn, respected veterans in education and children's entertainment, this inclusive program teaches Literacy, Physical Education, Social-Emotional Learning and 21st Century Skills through a kinesthetic dance model.
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ODC's 2020-2021 program has been possible through the generous support of the California Arts Council, Capital Group, Dodge and Cox, and our incredible individual donors.