Ballet AZ Blog

Our 2018-2019 Season Highlights

20 June 2019

Our 2018-2019 Season Highlights

As the curtain closes on this season, we are sharing some of our favorite moments from this past year! From world-premieres to new education programs, we have had such an eventful season all because of you. Thank you!


We kicked-off the season with New Moves, where we brought an Arizona premiere to the stage with Tony Award-winner and choreographer Justin Peck’s ballet In CreasesIt was a crowd favorite and we are grateful to Bob Benson who helped us make this possible for our Arizona community.

Ballet Arizona dancers
Ballet Arizona dancers in Justin Peck’s “In Creases.” Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.


This past fall, we launched our new education program DanceAZ. Created out of the pressing need for more youth arts education opportunities in schools, students participate in a six week residency program, culminating in a performance for their friends and families. These students not only learn the basics of ballet but also self-discovery and how to work with others in a creative environment, all of which help them develop new skills and ideas to carry them forward in life.

students in dance class
DanceAZ students in class.


This past February marked the world premiere of Ib Andersen’s ballet The Firebird! This ground-breaking new work would not have been possible without the generous support of Donald & Barbara Ottosen. It combined the athleticism and beauty of ballet with 21st century technology and showed the incredible impact new works have not only for our company and patrons but for the art form itself.

Ballet Arizona dancers
Ballet Arizona dancers in Ib Andersen’s “The Firebird.” Photo by Alexander Iziliaev.


On January 25th we danced away the evening at the Phoenix Art Museum for our annual Dance With Me Gala. This year we honored Billie Jo and Judd Herberger, whose dedication to the arts in Phoenix has forever impacted our community. We are especially grateful for their support of Ballet Arizona these many years!

Billie Jo and Judd Herberger
Honorary Chairs, Judd & Billie Jo Herberger. Photo by Haute Photography.


We celebrated the 2nd anniversary of the Hazel Hare Award of Artistic Excellence. Artistic Director Ib Andersen awards a male and female dancer each season whose spirit echoes the strength, dedication, and passion that Hazel exemplified throughout her entire life. This season’s recipients were Helio Lima and Rochelle Anvik.

Helio Lima and Rochelle Anvik.
2019 Hazel Hare Award Winners Helio Lima and Rochelle Anvik. Photo by Haute Photography.


Last but not least, we premiered George Balanchine’s iconic ballet Emeralds for the first time. From the stunning choreography to Gabriel Faure’s mesmerizing music, it was an absolute treat for our patrons and the dancers!

Ballets in Emeralds.
Ballet Arizona dancers in George Balanchine’s “Emeralds.” Photo by Alexander Iziliaev. © The George Balanchine Trust.

Comment below with some of your favorite memories of this past season and make sure you don’t miss out on any of our upcoming productions and events. Check out our 2019-2020 season as we celebrate 20 years of Artistic Director Ib Andersen!


Click here to see our 2019-2020 season!

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