ABT Gillian Murphy and Marcelo Gomes. Gene Schiavone, Courtesy ABT.

American Ballet Theatre Commemorates Three-Quarters of a Century

This story originally appeared in the October/November 2014 issue of Pointe.

American Ballet Theatre turns 75 this fall. The company's season at the David H. Koch Theater will feature a world premiere by choreographer Liam Scarlett set to music by Sergei Rachmaninoff, and a new production of Raymonda Divertissements staged by artistic director Kevin McKenzie and ballet mistress Irina Kolpakova. The company will also perform legacy works, like Twyla Tharp's Bach Partita, Alexei Ratmansky's Seven Sonatas and Léonide Massine?'s Gaîté Parisienne. “Our 75th is a milestone with which to look back at who we were and an opportunity to look forward to who we will be," says McKenzie.


Liam ScarlettAndrej Uspenski, Courtesy ABT

This marks Scarlett's first collaboration with ABT. The 27-year-old British wunderkind who cut his teeth at The Royal Ballet, first as a dancer and now as artist in residence, has previously choreographed for Miami City Ballet, San Francisco Ballet and New York City Ballet. Scarlett's new work will premiere at ABT's opening night gala on October 22, alongside Christopher Wheeldon's Thirteen Diversions and a performance by the students of ABT's Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School.

The company will also commemorate its long history with performances of works that have been in the ABT repertoire since the 1940s, such as Antony Tudor's Jardin aux Lilas and Jerome Robbins' Fancy Free.

Latest Posts


Getty Images

What's Ahead for Ballet Companies in the Age of COVID-19?

Let's be frank: No one knows what's ahead for the performing arts in the U.S. With COVID-19 forcing the cancellation of nearly a year of performances so far, including many Nutcrackers, ballet companies face a daunting path ahead with no roadmap for how to survive. While schools can offer classes online or in small groups, what does the future hold for companies when it's not safe to gather large audiences or corps de ballet?

"We are in for a very hard set of months," says Michael M. Kaiser, chairman of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management at the University of Maryland. "Nothing will change until there's a vaccine."

Pointe set out to find out what the new normal looks like while the virus is with us.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Sylvie Guillem and Éric Vu-An in "Mouvement, Rythme, Étude" (1985)

Sylvie Guillem and Éric Vu-An, two former leading dancers with the Paris Opéra Ballet, were both muses to Maurice Béjart. The boundary-pushing choreographer created several roles for each of them throughout their careers, including the 1985 duet "Mouvement, Rythme, Étude," when Guillem was just 20-years old and Vu-An just 21. In this excerpt from the ballet, the pair juxtapose technical brilliance and finesse with Béjart's playfully absurd post-modern movement.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Christopher Duggan, Courtesy Boston Ballet

Tips for Fitting into a Company Setting When You’re in the Junior Ranks

Landing a spot as a second company member or trainee is thrilling—your dream is starting to come true! While you'll still be training intensely, you'll also have opportunities to perform in company productions and take company class. But the newness of professional life can also be nerve-racking. To learn the ropes quickly, you'll need to know what will be expected of you, both in the studio and in your interactions with other dancers and staff. A few simple tips can keep you from making common missteps.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks