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The Company

Leadership

Photo: Fabrizio Ferri

Kevin McKenzie

Artistic Director
Hamilton E. James Chair

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Photo: Chris Taggart

Kara Medoff Barnett

Executive Director

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Kevin McKenzie

Artistic Director,
Hamilton E. James Chair

A native of Vermont, Kevin McKenzie received his ballet training at the Washington School of Ballet. In 1972, Mr. McKenzie was awarded a Silver medal at the Sixth International Competition in Varna, Bulgaria. He was a leading dancer with both the National Ballet of Washington and The Joffrey Ballet before joining American Ballet Theatre as a Soloist in March 1979. Mr. McKenzie was appointed a Principal Dancer the following December and danced with the Company until 1991.

As a Principal Dancer with American Ballet Theatre, Mr. McKenzie danced leading roles in all of the major full-length classics including Solor in La Bayadère, Don Jose in Carmen, the Prince in Mikhail Baryshnikov’s production of the of the full-length Cinderella, Franz in Coppélia, the Gentleman With Her in Dim Lustre, Basil and Espada in Don Quixote (Kitri’s Wedding), Albrecht in Giselle, a lading role in The Garden of Villandry, Her Lover in Jardin aux Lilas, the leading role in The Leaves Are Fading, the Friend in Pillar of Fire, the leading role in Raymonda (Grand Pas Hongrois), a featured role in Requiem, the Champion Roper in Rodeo, Romeo and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet, Prince Desire in The Sleeping Beauty, Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake, James in La Sylphide and the leading roles in Other Dances, Paquita, Les Sylphides, the Sylvia Pas de Deux and Theme and Variations. He created the role of Amnon in Martine van Hamel’s Amnon V’Tamar and a leading role in Clark Tippet’s S.P.E.B.S.Q.S.A.

During his performing career, Mr. McKenzie performed as a guest artist in cities throughout the world, including Spoleto, Italy, Paris, London, Tokyo, Havana, Moscow, Vienna and Korea, dancing with, among others, the London Festival Ballet, the Bolshoi Ballet, the National Ballet of Cuba and the Universal Ballet in Seoul. In September 1989, Mr. McKenzie was appointed a permanent guest artist with The Washington Ballet, and, in 1991, assumed the position of Artistic Associate of that company. He has also acted as Associate Artistic Director of, and a choreographer with, Martine van Hamel’s New Amsterdam Ballet.

Mr. McKenzie was appointed Artistic Director of American Ballet Theatre in October 1992. His choreographic credits include Groupo Zamboria (1984) and Liszt Études, now called Transcendental Études, (1991), both for Martine van Hamel’s New Amsterdam Ballet, Lucy and the Count (1992) for The Washington Ballet, and the full-length classic The Nutcracker (1993), Don Quixote (1995), in collaboration with Susan Jones, a new production of Swan Lake (2000) and a new production of The Sleeping Beauty (2007), with Gelsey Kirkland and Michael Chernov, all for American Ballet Theatre.

Kara Medoff Barnett

Executive Director

Kara Medoff Barnett was appointed Executive Director of American Ballet Theatre, America’s National Ballet Company, in February 2016 following nearly nine years as a senior executive at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. At ABT, Barnett has advanced innovation and inclusion, supporting a robust slate of new productions and increasing diversity in the training pipeline. Since 2016, the Company has performed in Paris, Muscat, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, Chicago, Detroit, Singapore and Hong Kong, bringing extraordinary art to audiences worldwide.

During her tenure at Lincoln Center, Barnett served as Director of Strategy and Business Development and Senior Director of the Capital Campaign for the transformative redevelopment of Lincoln Center’s iconic 16-acre campus. In 2012, Barnett became the founding Managing Director of Lincoln Center International (LCI), established to extend Lincoln Center’s brand, facilitate artistic exchange, and advise government leaders, philanthropists, and developers on the planning and management of cultural infrastructure projects around the globe. Under Barnett’s leadership, LCI launched the Lincoln Center Global Exchange, an annual conference for international leaders and change agents to advance the role of art and culture in addressing critical challenges facing our collective future.

Barnett has produced plays on and off Broadway, and she received a Tony® Award for the 2003 Broadway revival of Long Day’s Journey Into Night. She is a member of the Advisory Committee of the American Theatre Wing, a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a 2015 Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute. In 2014, she was named as a member of “40 Under 40” in Crain’s New York Business.

Barnett attended Duke University on a Trinity Scholarship, graduating summa cum laude, and received her M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.