Jobs Cut—And Created

Published in the August/September 2009 issue.

Uncertain times have pushed Nevada Ballet Theatre’s new artistic director, James Canfield, to make some significant changes. Canfield, appointed in January, has laid off 10 of the company’s dancers and several administrative staffers. “It’s hard, but tough times will make us more committed, innovative and creative,” he says. (He hopes that NBT’s move to the new Smith Center for the Performing Arts in early 2012 will help draw the large audiences the company needs.) Canfield’s restructuring plan also includes the elimination of a ranking system. “I believe that the ensemble company allows for more opportunities for the entire roster of dancers and makes for a stronger, more well-rounded and diverse company," he says. Despite the recession, there’s happy news for ballet fans in Arkansas and Indiana. The directors of Ballet Arkansas—which hasn’t mounted a professional company in 12 years—recently announced that they have enough funds to support a troupe again; it will consist of six dancers under the artistic direction of Arleen Sugano. The revived BA’s first concert is scheduled for October 16–17. Meanwhile, newly formed Indianapolis City Ballet is the first ballet company to call the city home since Ballet Internationale folded more than four years ago. Chairman Robert R. Hesse is planning a gala performance for September 12. If the response is positive, Hesse will continue with the troupe, which will have 10 to 14 dancers and be led by former ABT II director John Meehan. -Laura Di Orio and Amanda Sillikier