The New York City Ballet is at the top of the list of the world’s esteemed ballet companies. Here is a brief profile of the company, including its history and current information, plus some photos and videos from the company.
The idea for the company came from Lincoln Kirstein, who wanted to start a ballet company in the United States that was self-contained, meaning it would train its own dancers through a ballet school and have its dancers perform original works created specifically for them. Together with famed ballet choreographer George Balanchine, Kirstein made his dream a reality when he started a new company in 1933.The company faced great challenges in its beginning years, but it was able to withstand even the struggles that came along with World War II. Esteemed choreographer Jerome Robbins got on board as well, and the New York City Ballet company flourished. It performed in what is now the David H. Koch Theater that opened in April of 1964, and the company has been based there ever since. A unique feature of the New York City Ballet is that it also has a summer home. Every year, the company performs in Saratoga, New York, at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. In addition, the company has made many trips around the world to perform at various venues in countries such as Russia, Australia, Japan, and South Korea. For more details about New York City Ballet’s rich history, check out the company’s website.
New York City Ballet is the largest ballet company in the United States, with about 90 dancers. Choreographers George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, and Peter Martins contributed to the 150 works choreographed just for the New York City Ballet dancers since the company’s start. The official ballet school of the company is the School of American Ballet in Lincoln Center, which consists of about 350 aspiring ballerinas who study under the watch of the company’s directors and ballet masters. This school feeds directly into the company.
New York City Ballet is a company like no other. In fact, the company performs more ballets in a single year than any other company in the world. The 2012-2013 season, for example, includes more than 75 works. For a full list, check out the company’s season repertory.
Check out these great videos that give insight into what happens in a professional ballet company, plus some examples of these dancers’ incredible skill and technique!
Video #1: This video shows what goes on behind the scenes in a renowned ballet company like New York City Ballet.
Video #2: Here is a fun look into a ballerina’s most treasured possession: her pointe shoes.
Video #3: Now take a look at New York City Ballet’s “Serenade,” choreographed by George Balanchine.