Miami City Ballet Names Lourdes Lopez, Former Balanchine Ballerina, to Succeed Edward Villella as Artistic Director

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In a unanimous vote of 9-2, Miami City Ballet’s ‘Search Committee’ has chosen the Cuban-born and Miami-raised Lourdes Lopez as its new Artistic Director and the decision is making headlines throughout the world of ballet. Recipient of a full scholarship with the Joffrey Ballet school, accepted into New York City Ballet at the age of 16, her 24 years with the company, under such legendary leaders as George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins, has provided her with a resumé that seems tailor-made for the job. Yet this former NYCB ballerina, and co-founder of Morphoses with Christopher Wheeldon, was not everyone’s favorite choice…namely Miami City Ballet’s departing and Founding Artistic Director, Edward Villella, who just presented an Isadora Duncan Dance Award, himself a world renown Balanchine protegé…and some of MCB’s dancers, who have never known another Artistic Director in their entire dance careers.

Lourdes Lopez in New York City Ballet's 'Firebird' by George Balanchine; Photo: Lois Greenfield

Rather than paraphrase what the press has already published, I’d like to present what I consider to be the top 3 reports for your perusal; a pretty complete picture can be painted from reading all 3:

1. The New York Times

2. The Miami Herald


3. The Wall Street Journal

Ms. Lopez’ new position will begin May 1, 2013 and her plans to present new works, as well as her dedication to the Balanchine repertory, sound like a good match for the company that recently brought Paris to its feet. What is your opinion? I’d love to hear from some of the dancers-if you comment, you may do so under the protection of anonymity.


 Lourdes Lopez: On Being a Balanchine Dancer

Lourdes Lopez shares some of her experiences from her 24 year career as a dancer for New York City Ballet, and answers questions about Balanchine’s possessiveness, how NYCB has changed since she danced with the company, and life after dance.

  Sesame Street’s Elmo and Zoe *cooperate* by ballet dancing with Lourdes Lopez and Jock Soto

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