Support America’s National Ballet Company® DONATE NOW

ABT News

March 24, 2005


Franco De Vita, Dean of Faculty and Curriculum of Boston Ballet School since September 2004, has been appointed Principal of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre. De Vita’s appointment, which becomes effective April 1, 2005, was announced today by ABT Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie

De Vita was born in Pavia, Italy and graduated from the Conservatoire Royal de Musique de Charleroi in Belgium. He began his professional ballet career at age 15 and danced with several European companies. His repertoire included the works of choreographers George Skibine, Antony Tudor and George Balanchine. In Europe, he performed in musical comedies and operettas such as Hello Dolly, Kiss Me Kate and My Fair Lady.

Upon retiring from performing, De Vita acquired the Enrico Cecchetti Diploma and received the highest teaching degree given by the Italian Ministry of Education through the Accademia Nazionale de Danza, Rome. From 1983 to 1995, together with Raymond Lukens, he directed the Scuola de Danza Classica Hamlyn in Florence. He has served as President of the Italian Cecchetti Society and is a Fellow of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in London. From 1995 to 1999, De Vita served as a company teacher for Hartford Ballet and principal faculty member of the School of Hartford Ballet. In 1999, he joined the faculty at The Ailey School and the Ailey/Fordham BFA program in New York City. De Vita has also served as a guest company teacher at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Ailey II, Boston Ballet, Hartford Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Dance Connecticut, Dance Educators of America, Youth America Grand Prix and Alberta Ballet Company and School.

“It is my profound honor to accept the position of Principal of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre,” De Vita said. “It is every dance educator’s dream to have the opportunity to pass on the great tradition of classical ballet to future generations of talented young dancers.”

Of De Vita’s appointment, Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie said, “We are delighted to name Franco to lead the faculty and students of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre. His experience and dedication to young dancers fulfills our aim to deliver the highest quality classical training to the dancers of the future.”

Established in January 2004, The Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre is a pre-professional classical ballet program currently training students aged 14-18 at the Company’s 890 Broadway rehearsal studios. The program includes a curriculum of classical technique, pointe, pas de deux, character, modern technique and Pilates. Faculty includes members of ABT’s Artistic Staff, ABT alumni and prominent teachers. Students are accepted based on merit and scholarships are available.

Auditions for the fall semester of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre will be held Friday, April 15 at 890 Broadway, New York,
New York. For audition information, please call 212-477-3030, ext. 3281 or contact

Back To ABT News >>