Ballet Stars

Meet the Two Soon-to-Be-Launching Ballet Companies You Need to Know About

Vikki Sloviter Photography, courtesy of Instagram

While dancers switching companies is nothing new, the ballet companies themselves rarely change. That's why we're especially excited to see two new American companies on the horizon for the 2017 and 2018 seasons.

South Carolina-based American National Ballet (ANB) plans to make its debut first, with its inaugural season taking place this fall, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer. Though ANB is still holding auditions (both in-person and through video), they've announced Sara Michelle Murawski as their first principal dancer and company member. Since ANB was created with the intention of highlighting diversity, it makes perfect sense that they wanted to bring in Murawski, who was let go from the Pennsylvania Ballet this past season for being too tall.


"The founding ideas of ANB appeal to me so deeply [because] they want to change the way artists are treated," Sara told us. "They believe diversity is beautiful, and I suddenly realized that it will be my first opportunity to be in a company in my home country where my height might not work against me, but is being embraced instead."

Helmed by artistic director Octavio Martin, who formerly danced with the National Ballet of Cuba, ANB's site has promised that the company intends to have both an orchestra and pre-professional program, too. "I'm elated to be a part of this from the very beginning," Sara said, adding that ANB will be bringing in guest artists.

The second new company we're keeping our eyes on is Indianapolis Ballet, which is set to make its debut at the Toby Theatre at the Indianapolis Museum of Art in early 2018. Following their Moving Forward Capital Campaign, founding artistic director Victoria Lyras said that the company intends to put on main-stage productions in keeping with the school's classical ballet training. "We are unique in our commitment to the George Balanchine legacy and to Indianapolis," Lyras said in a press release. "The professional company's dancers, staff and board members will continue to be part of the Central Indiana community and engage with the public to provide 'diversity of access' to classical ballet."

Though they haven't determined their dancers yet, Indianapolis Ballet will announce auditions on their site this coming June, which will be open to dancers across the country as well as from the Indianapolis School of Ballet.

For more news on all things ballet, don't miss a single issue.

The Conversation
News
Gene Schiavone, Courtesy ABT

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights.

Keep reading... Show less
The Royal Ballet's Vadim Muntagirov and Marianela Nuñez in La Bayadère. Photo by Bill Cooper, Courtesy ROH.

Do you ever wish you could teleport to London and casually stroll into The Royal Opera House to see some of the world's best-loved ballets? Well, we have a solution for you: The Royal Ballet's 2018-19 cinema season.

Whether live or recorded, the seven ballet programs listed below, streaming now through next October, will deliver all of the magic that The Royal Ballet has to offer straight to your local movie theater. Can you smell the popcorn already?

Keep reading... Show less
Ballet Careers
Jolie Rose Lombardo performing at ADC | IBC prior to her diagnosis. Richard Finkelstein, Courtesy Stephanie Lombardo

It was mid-January when 15-year-old Jolie Rose Lombardo first noticed the leg pain. A scholarship student at the John Cranko Schule in Stuttgart, Germany, the Florida native felt fine dancing through full days of classes and completing her regular school schedule. It was only at night that what appeared to be sciatic pain would shoot down her right leg when she tried to lie down, making resting difficult. After a few sleepless nights, spent mostly standing up, she went to the doctor for an X-ray, followed by an MRI.

Keep reading... Show less
Summer Intensive Survival
Getty Images

It is easy to feel as though the entire ballet year revolves around summer: more hours in the day for dance, and another summer intensive to add to your resumé. You've likely dreamt about which program you want to attend, traveled to auditions and gotten excited about the new challenges in a big city school. But what if you find yourself staying home?

It can feel heartbreaking to watch your peers take off for their intensives. Whether you're staying home by choice or because of injury or finances, you can still improve and have fun at your local studio. Unlike those headed off to big intensives, you have flexibility and money on your side. Jody Skye Schissler, owner of Skye Ballet Center in Herndon, Virginia, encourages dancers to start by asking, "How can you make your summer more focused on yourself and what you need for your future?" Here are tips for making the most of your time at home.

Keep reading... Show less