A Story 20 years in the making

The 2017-2018 season marks the 20th anniversary of Carolina Ballet. Each season, we find a theme or thread that unites the performances. For this milestone year, it feels appropriate to focus on the idea of story.

A good story is powerful. It can educate, entertain and inspire. Most of the works this season are based on classic stories with strong narratives familiar to us all. Others, while not based on stories, certainly have good stories behind them.

As we embark on our 20th anniversary season, it seems appropriate to recount our story—from the founding of the company to the current season and the many milestones achieved along the way.

The story of Carolina Ballet is a wonderful one that we have been honored to create with you these past 20 years. It’s a story that will endure as long as passionate supporters like you are here to help us write it.

From the beginning, creating original works has been the cornerstone of Artistic Director Robert Weiss’ vision for Carolina Ballet. And that continues to this day. Mr. Weiss notes, “In general, ballet doesn’t have as deep a repertoire as the theater or opera. So the works we create add not only to our repertoire, but also to the repertoire of the ballet world.”

Mr. Weiss has created more than 60 original works for the company. The repertoire includes his original, full-length Messiah; Swan Lake, Carmen and Macbeth, as well as the substantial 9th Symphony of Beethoven and the Tolstoy novella, The Kreutzer Sonata, just to name a few.

In addition to his own choreography, Mr. Weiss has commissioned 60 original works from outside the company and within. Principal Guest Choreographer Lynne Taylor-Corbett has contributed 13 ballets, including her unique Carmina Burana; family favorites The Little Mermaid and Dracula; and her collaboration with The Red Clay Ramblers, Carolina Jamboree.

The company’s latest chapter in creativity is the appointment of Zalman Raffael as Choreographer in Residence. Mr. Raffael has contributed 14 works in five, short years.

What does the next chapter hold for Carolina Ballet? We’re counting on you to help write it. Whether you become a full-season subscriber or buy tickets to a few performances that speak to you, we hope we can count on you to help us fill the next 20 years with the power, artistry, athleticism and grace of the ballet.

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