Press Release

Press Release


Patrick Armand’s final season as SF Ballet School Director honored with fundraising dinner on May 25

SAN FRANCISCO, March 23, 2023—Tickets are on sale today for San Francisco Ballet School’s (SF Ballet School’s) 2023 Spring Festival, taking place May 24–26 at the Blue Shield of California Theater at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. The Spring Festival will celebrate the 90th anniversary of SF Ballet School, the official school of SF Ballet and the oldest professional ballet academy in America, and will include a fundraising dinner on May 25 honoring SF Ballet School Director Patrick Armand in his final season as director. Proceeds from the dinner and performances benefit scholarship and financial aid programs for the School, which total over $1.5 million annually.

The Spring Festival includes three evenings of varying programs that highlight the talent in the School, from young students beginning their training to advanced students on the verge of professional dance careers. Curated by Armand, the 2023 Spring Festival performances feature a world premiere by Myles Thatcher, an SF Ballet Soloist whose ballets include COLORFORMSand Otherness, and whose choreographic career started at SF Ballet School; and an excerpt from former SF Ballet Artistic Director Lew Christensen’s Beauty and the Beast (1958) in celebration of the School’s historic 90th anniversary. The programming will also include premieres from SF Ballet School student choreographers, a demonstration by students in Levels 2–8 choreographed by Karen Gabay, Stolen Moments by Val Caniparoli, and choreography by School Faculty members Dana Genshaft, Viktor Plotnikov, and Larissa Ponomarenko.

The SF Ballet Auxiliary fundraising dinner on May 25, hosted at Four Seasons San Francisco and with honorary chair Marie O’Gara Lipman, will honor Armand’s transformative impact on the School. During Armand’s tenure, which began in 2010, the percentage of SF Ballet Company members who trained in the School has grown to over 70%, and the School has been recognized as one of the finest in the world. Armand will continue his longstanding affiliation with the company as School Artistic Associate, supporting the company and the dancers who come to study at SF Ballet School. More information about Armand can be found here.

Tickets to the Spring Festival performances begin at $20 for SF Ballet School Students and $25 for the general public and can be purchased here or by calling by calling 415-865-2000, Monday through Friday from 10 am to 4 pm Pacific. Tickets to the Thursday, May 25 fundraising dinner and performance range from $200 to $25,000 and can be purchased here or by contacting Meg Sullivan at msullivan@sfballet.org or 415-865-6625.

Preview images of the SF Ballet’s 2023 School Spring Festival are available at this link.

San Francisco Ballet School
2023 Spring Festival

Blue Shield of California Theater at YBCA
700 Howard Street

Wednesday, May 24 at 7:30 PM
Thursday, May 25 at 6 PM
Fundraising dinner to follow the performance at Four Seasons Hotel San Francisco
Friday, May 27 at 7:30 PM

San Francisco Ballet is one of the world’s leading ballet companies. As a commissioner, collaborator, and presenter, the Ballet performs locally, nationally, and internationally with the top choreographers, artists, and dancers while proudly celebrating its trailblazing role in dance. Since its founding in 1933 and as the oldest professional ballet company in the United States, the organization has been an innovator in dance and an originator of well-loved cultural traditions, from staging the first American production of Swan Lake to being the first company in the United States to present an annual holiday Nutcracker. In the progressive, innovative spirit of San Francisco, its mission is to share the beauty of classical and contemporary ballet, the joyful, transformative experience of live dance performance by artists working at the highest caliber, and to provide exceptional training opportunities for the next generation of professional dancers in its School.

Kate McKinney, Senior Manager, PR

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