Helen Pickett has just been named resident choreographer of Atlanta Ballet. The former Forsythe dancer has a contemporary aesthetic that intricately weaves ballet steps into quirky phrases, and she's made work everywhere from Boston Ballet to Vienna State Opera. Her new three-year appointment in Georgia will include both a series of premieres and an annual "Choreographic Essentials" workshop.
The move comes as part of Atlanta Ballet's new 5-year strategic plan, which involves a commitment to establishing signature works for the company. It also marks an important step forward for the ballet world: Other than Amy Siewert at Smuin Ballet, no other resident choreographers at US ballet companies are female. In a field dominated by women, the lack of women's voices at the top has been a thorny issue for decades. Be sure to check out Pointe's December/January issue (coming soon!) to read more about it.