(Madison, WI – January 12, 2017)—Madison Ballet’s annual December performances of The Nutcracker grossed the highest ticket and concession sales in the 35-year history of the organization.
Artistic Director W. Earle Smith’s production was the culmination of the work of hundreds of local cast and crew members, musicians, volunteers, staff and designers, and is arguably the largest holiday production in the area. The 2016 performances once again featured live music from the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Andrew Sewell, and cast members from over 18 local dance studios, all performing alongside the Ballet’s company of 12 dancers, who came together to mount the largest holiday production in the area. With over 12,000 audience members in attendance, the success of this year’s Nutcracker marks a significant achievement, following a difficult year for the Ballet, in which the company’s season was cut short due to financial challenges.
Of the achievement, Smith said:
“I am so proud of everyone who helped to make this year’s production a success. From the dancers onstage to the musicians, volunteers, and crew backstage the magic begins with our partners in the community. The Nutcracker could not continue without the generous spirit of the people of the Madison area. With that support, Madison Ballet will continue to provide the highest level of artistry, education and opportunities to the community for decades to come.”
That being said, while Development Director Alicia Kopp marks this success with optimism, she is quick to point out that ticket revenue is just a small part of what is needed to sustain Madison Ballet’s extraordinary organization. “Ticket sales amount to less than half of our annual income. The contributions and sponsorships that we receive are a crucial part of our success. As we move into the new year and further exceptional programming, we continue to seek new funding opportunities in support of our world-class local artists and programs.”
Bare – Repertory Program
February 3 – 4, 2017
Primavera – Repertory Program
*Featuring Two World Premieres
March 31 – April 1, 2017
ABOUT MADISON BALLET
Founded in 1981, Madison Ballet is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit performing arts organization based, led by Artistic Director W. Earle Smith. Its mission is to promote appreciation of and access to ballet by providing training and performing opportunities through public performances and educational initiatives.
Now in its 35th year, Madison Ballet is the second-largest dance organization in Wisconsin. Over 12,000 people attend Madison Ballet’s original production of The Nutcracker each year. In addition, Madison Ballet presents a varied repertoire of other performances each season, from intimate mixed-bill programs to elaborate full-length productions. Community outreach programs such as Madison Ballet: Offstage & Personal and Behind the Curtains bring the magic of Madison Ballet to both the young and young-at-heart, providing new perspectives on this timeless art form.
The School of Madison Ballet (SMB) opened in September 2005 and has become one of the most highly respected dance education programs in the Midwest. SMB provides classes and pre-professional training for over 450 students from children to adults. Alumni of the school and studio company have gone on to a number of prestigious companies and schools, such as Sacramento Ballet, Miami City Ballet, School of American Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet School, and Ballet Chicago.
For more information, please contact:
Gretchen Bourg, General Manager