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Celebrating 60 Years

Asset 8
Tatiana Dokoudovsak in 1957

In 1957, Tatiana Dokoudovska starts the company at the Carriage House next to the old brick Conservatory building (the old Grant Hall)

Cast of the Premier Performance of the Kansas City Ballet in 1957

On April 30, 1957, the company gives its premiere performance at the Victoria Theater (now the Lyric) with Artistic Director Tatiana Dokoudovska. The program includes two ballets: Michel Fokine’s original Les Sylphides, and Ruse d’Amour, an adaptation by Miss Tania of Fokine’s The Toys.

In December of 1957, the Kansas City Ballet Company becomes a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, and includes a board of directors, business manager, and musical director.

In the 1958-1959 season, company name changed to Kansas City Civic Ballet.

Two original dancers from the Kansas City Ballet

The company moves to a small place on 45th street near the Nelson Atkins Museum in 1963.

Guest Artist Nathalie Krassovska

In 1966, Nathalie Krassovska is first well-known guest artist and sets Anton Dolins’ Pas de Quatre.

For the company’s 10th anniversary in 1967, they perform at the Music Hall featuring three guest choreographers.

In 1967, the Womens Committee forms – later to become the Ballet Guild.

In 1968, the company moves to Treadway Hall on the UMKC Campus.

Guest Director and Choreographer Zachary Solov create entire evening with three world premiere ballets in 1968.

In 1968, Elizabeth Hard chairs first Ballet Ball.

KC Mayor proclaims Civic Ballet Week in 1970

The mayor of Kansas City proclaims a special “Civic Ballet Week” in 1970

During the 1970-1971 season, the company name changed to Kansas City Ballet.

In 1972, the ballet hosts the first Festival of the Mid-States Regional Ballet Association, with companies from 11 states gathering to take class, audition, and share their work at the Music Hall in Concert and Gala Performances.

Scene from The Nutcracker Ballet in 1974

In December 1972, KCB performs first Nutcracker.

Lyric Theatre designated as season performance home in 1975.

1975 Ballet Performance

In 1975-1976, fall performance added to annual Nutcracker production and spring production for a three show season.

The Kansas City Ballet Company 1975-1976 Photo

Implemented first sale of subscription series season tickets during 1975-1976 season.

In 1976, Miss Tania steps down as artistic director of the Ballet so she can devote her time to teaching and continue her position as head of the ballet department at the Conservatory of Music

Eric Hyrst is Artistic Director 1976-1978.

In 1976, KCB qualifies as member of the National Endowment for the Arts Dance Touring Program.

In 1977, the company moves to the Prescott Firehouse in Kansas City, KS - upstairs room with fire pole in the corner.

In April 1977 New York City Ballet dancer Patricia McBride performs her first full-length production of Giselle with KCB.

Tangents Dancers

In 1977-1978, a season of four productions, including Fall, Nutcracker and two Spring Shows, performed at the Performing Arts Center in KCK.

Ronald M. Sequoio is Artistic Director 1978-1980.

In 1979, the company moves to a warehouse under the Broadway Bridge at 3rd and Broadway.