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ABT@80: A Fond Look Back

Iconic Female Choreographers and the ABT Women’s Movement

June 25, 2020 at 12:00 pm

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ABT@80: A Fond Look Back

2020 marks the 80th Anniversary of America’s National Ballet Company®, as well as the 20th Anniversary of Kevin McKenzie’s Swan Lake, the 35th Anniversary of Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo & Juliet, and the 40th Anniversary of Natalia Makarova’s La Bayadère. ABTs celebrate these milestones and honors dancers from its past with historical images, videos, and testimonials featuring its legendary artists.

Female Choreographers and the ABT Women’s Movement

“The ABT Women’s Movement takes inspiration from the groundbreaking female choreographers who have left a lasting impact on ABT’s legacy, including Agnes de Mille and Twyla Tharp.” – Kevin McKenzie, ABT Artistic Director

The ABT Women’s Movement is an ongoing initiative to support the creation, exploration and staging of new works by female choreographers for American Ballet Theatre and the ABT Studio Company. The ABT Women’s Movement supports at least three female choreographers each season to create new works for ABT. In most years, one work is designated for ABT’s main Company, one for the ABT Studio Company and one is a work-in-process workshop for either the main Company or ABT Studio Company dancers. In this workshop, each choreographer will work with her respective group of dancers for a two-to-five week period, receiving guidance and feedback from ABT’s Artistic staff.

Enjoy the below videos and photo gallery featuring some of ABT’s female choreographers of the past and present.

ABT Women’s Movement

Video: We the Wencks

An Interview with Twyla Tharp

The iconic Twyla Tharp takes us behind the scenes of her crossover ballet, Deuce Coupe. Tharp has a storied history with ABT, having choreographed 16 World Premieres on the Company. Her most recent work, A Gathering of Ghosts, premiered in the 2019 Fall Season.

Natalia Makarova on the 40th Anniversary of La Bayadère

This year, we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the legendary Natalia Makarova’s production of La Bayadère. Listen to Makarova reflect on the ballet and her message to dancers at this current time in history.

Claudia Schreier Choreographing on ABT Studio Company

Claudia Schreier choreographed a thrilling new ballet, Neon, on ABT Studio Company in the 2018-2019 season.

Video: Jacob Hutchings, Whistle Sports

Stefanie Batten Bland Choreographing on ABT Studio Company

Stefanie Batten Bland working with ABT Studio Company at Duke University during the 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 seasons.

Video: John Laww

Amy Hall Garner Choreographing on ABT Studio Company

Amy Hall Garner choreographed Escapades on ABT Studio Company at Kaatsbaan Cultural Park during the 2019-2020 season and it has been lighting up stages ever since.

Video: Nel Shelby