New York City Ballet

New York City Ballet

New York City Ballet (NYCB) is one of the world's leading ballet companies. Featuring spectacular dancers and unparalleled repertory, NYCB continues to dazzle audiences through classical dance.

New York City Ballet in George Balanchine's Symphony in Three Movements
Photo by Erin Baiano

Reimagining the Principles of Classical Dance

New York City Ballet

New York City Ballet
Photo by Erin Baiano

New York City Ballet was co-founded by Lincoln Kirstein, an American philanthropist and art connoisseur, and legendary choreographer George Balanchine. Kirstein envisioned an American ballet where American dancers could be trained and schooled under the guidance of the world's greatest ballet masters to perform a new, modern repertory, rather than rely on touring artists performing for American audiences.

After seeing ballets by George Balanchine, including Prodigal Son (the first Balanchine work he experienced) in 1929 and Les Ballets 1933 in Paris, Kirstein met the choreographer and invited him to work in the United States where they would build an American ballet tradition together. Balanchine's response, "But first, a school." is now part of ballet history. In 1934, the School of American Ballet opened its doors on Madison Avenue. Following a 1948 performance of Orpheus, the invitation came from City Center's then-Chairman of the Executive Committee, Morton Baum, to establish a resident company to be known as New York City Ballet, part of the City Center of Music and Drama. That same year, Balanchine invited the 30-year-old Jerome Robbins to join the nascent company as Assistant Artistic Director. 

Today, NYCB honors its roots by presenting the ballets of Balanchine and Robbins, who choreographed much of the Company's active repertory of over 150 works, while also developing new work by contemporary choreographers that speaks to modern times. Presenting approximately 60 ballets every year – including classic full length works such as George Balanchine's The Nutcracker ® and Swan Lake, as well as plotless ballets on mixed repertory programs – NYCB continues to be a dominant force in the ballet world. NYCB's mission is accompanied by a commitment to expand the Company's audience and make ballet accessible to the widest possible public through tours, education programs, the creative use of media, and other outreach efforts.

GRoW Support

2021

annual luncheon