Ballet is changing, and hopefully for the better. For a long time on this blog, I have complained about how that change in ballet must start with the change of artistic directors and executive directors. And now it is happening.
Why is this important?
For years, ballet has been criticized about race, socio-economic privilege, body image, male favoritism, and elitism amongst the general public and the dance community as a whole. In large, this has been continued as new directors have been appointed based on fame, prestige, and favoritism amongst board members, fellow company dancers, and such. But, in order for ballet to change, the visionaries that create the look of ballet, artistic directors, need to change. This is just a slew of changes that need to happen in order for ballet to survive. School directors will also be changing up over the next season, as this too needs to change, as school directors influence the body types and types of dancers that are selected for professional schools.
Here are some of the changes that are happening…
San Francisco Ballet had announced that Helgi Tomasson, Artistic Director was to step down in 2022 after almost 40 years of leading SFB, but the company also announced this week that Kelly Tweeddale stepped down as executive director. (view article here)
Oregon Ballet Theatre‘s Artistic Director, Kevin Irving, has parted ways the board asked him to step down.
Awkward, because his partner is the current resident choreographer. (view article here)
Correction: Nicolo Fonte has left OBT.
American Ballet Theatre‘s Kevin McKenzie, is also set to retire at the end of the 2021-2022 season after 30 years of leading the company. (View ABT’s press release here)
Cincinnati Ballet‘s Victoria Morgan, will also be stepping down at the end of the 2021-2022 season after 25 years of leading this company and financially stabilizing the company. (view Pointe Magazine’s article here)
Boston Ballet School‘s Margaret Tracey will be stepping down. Announced via zoom to students.
Joffrey‘s Jose Carayol will be leaving for the Royal Ballet School. Super lovely conversation on Insta.
More to come…. Changes are happening all over. Stay tuned.
Photo: Adobe Stock.