Artistic Staff

Anita Paciotti

Rehearsal Director

Anita Paciotti


  • Born

    Oakland, California

  • Training

    San Francisco Ballet School

  • Company Membership

    Joined in 1968.
    Named Principal Character Dancer in 1987
    Appointed as Rehearsal Director in 1991

Anita Paciotti was born in Oakland, California. She studied ballet at San Francisco Ballet School and joined the Company in 1968, where she performed numerous leading roles including Lise in Sir Frederick Ashton’s La Fille mal gardée. In addition, she performed soloist roles in George Balanchine’s Serenade, Stars and Stripes, Symphony in C, and the Choleric movement of Balanchine’s The Four Temperaments.

Paciotti is responsible for staging and rehearsing ballets by choreographers including George Balanchine, David Bintley, August Bournonville, Ed Liang, James Kudelka, Lar Lubovitch, John Cranko, John Neumeier, Jerome Robbins, Helgi Tomasson (all of his full-length ballets and works including On A Theme of Paganini and 7 for Eight) Stanton Welch, Christopher Wheeldon, Yuri Possokhov (all works up to 2022), and more.

Paciotti has appeared in the “Dance in America” broadcast of Romeo and Juliet, recreating her role as Lady Capulet. She also performed the Bearded Lady in Christensen’s Jinx and the Red Dance from Smuin’s Songs of Mahler for two KQED-TV broadcasts, taped in 1984.  

In 1987, Tomasson appointed Paciotti principal character dancer, and based the role of Carabosse, from his production of The Sleeping Beauty, on her. In 1993, Tomasson also based the role of Nurse on Paciotti, for his production of Romeo & Juliet. Other character roles include the Mistress in Lew Christensen’s Con Amore, The Witch in Bournonville’s La Sylphide, Columbine in Christensen’s Scarlatti Portfolio, a Partisan in Maurice Bejart’s Firebird, the Red Couple in Jirí Kylián’s Forgotten Land, the pas de deux in Michael Smuin’s Bouquet, and the lead woman in Shinju.

2018 marked Paciotti’s 50th year with San Francisco Ballet.