Julie Kent began dancing professionally by training locally in Bethesda at the Academy of the Maryland Youth Ballet. Little did she know she would later become the longest serving ballerina in the 75-year history of the American Ballet Theatre in New York City. Come this summer, Kent will make her way back to the District in a big way: as artistic director of The Washington Ballet.
“I am excited to return to the D.C. area and to have this opportunity to share my experience to train and nurture dancers so that they can develop to their full potential,” she said in a statement.
The news comes a month after Septime Webre, the current artistic director, announced he would step down at the end of June to pursue other creative endeavors.
Kent will familiarize herself with the company before making any changes, but has intimated she would like the company to perform classic works it has not yet performed. Her repertoire includes over 100 ballets and works by classic choreographers. She also had roles created for her by many contemporary choreographers.
“I think the hopes and dreams are to bring excellent dancers, excellent repertoire and to serve the entire Washington ballet community,” she said.
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