"Ballet Memphis is something of a little engine that
could, to sum up the imaginative grit of Dorothy Gunther Pugh,
who has presided over the group with equal dashes of elegance
and temerity for 20 years."
Gia Kourlas, The New
“The ache and darkness Ballet Memphis put onstage
was more than a dance, it was an echo of human experience.”
Sarah Kaufmann, The Washington
"'[Ballet Memphis] reflects their communities, and they reflect
Christopher Blank, The
Ballet Memphis, founded in 1986 by artistic
director and CEO Dorothy Gunther Pugh,
is recognized for its close ties to the region’s rich
musical and literary heritage. It has been heralded for
its innovations as a ballet company committed to creating
and commissioning relevant work, nurturing young choreographers,
and expanding the roles of dancers within the company and
the community.... >more
Dorothy Gunther Pugh–Founding
Artistic Director and CEO. In 1986, Pugh founded
a company with two professional dancers and a budget of $75,000.
Today, Ballet Memphis employs 18 professional dancers, operates
with a $3.4 million budget and is regularly lauded for its
artistic innovation and excellence. Pugh is one of only five
female artistic directors of American dance companies of similar
size and budget.... >more
The River Project 2
In the second The River Project season, three river-inspired world premiere works reflect the wonder of the Mississippi River's
famous natural and cultural resource. From the Mississippi headwaters to the gateway to the West and all places in between, Milwaukee choreographer Petr Zahradnícek, Ballet Memphis' own Julie Niekrasz and San Francisco choreographer Julia Adam explore new territory on the stage... >more
The company also performs story ballets, including Ballet Memphis’ Choreographic Associate Steven McMahon’s Wizard of Oz (decription below), Peter Pan, and Cinderella and a production of Nutcracker.
Wizard of Oz
>View Wizard of Oz Educational Resource here.(PDF)
Red shoes and witches, poppies and munchkins, and all of Dorothy's friends are here for this beloved story. Wizard of Oz, choreographed bySteven McMahon, is a two-act performance danced by 23 performers which has an option to incorporate up to 20 local children into the performance.
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