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Celebrating Cincinnati Ballet’s 60th Anniversary

2023-2024 SEASON


Photo of a female ballerina wearing a pink leotard posing with her arms in the air

September 15 – 24 | Aronoff Center for the Arts

More Room to Play

The 2023-2024 Season kicks off with Rep 1—MORE ROOM TO PLAY, Kaplan New Works. The wildly popular annual series returns with invigorated programming from Artistic Director Jodie Gates.

The annual Kaplan New Works series presents the work of up-and-coming choreographers. This ambitious program will feature two world premieres, one by Tiler Peck, principal dancer with New York City Ballet, and one by Houston Thomas, freelance choreographer and a second-soloist with the Dresden Semperoper Ballett. Thomas’ work is set to the music of Bohren & der Club of Gore, a German ambient/jazz band, and British musician cktrl.

Completing the program is a work entitled Quem Viver, Verá (“He Who Lives Shall See”) a dance for five men by Cincinnati Ballet artistic collaborator Jennifer Archibald.  The title work on the program, MORE ROOM TO PLAY, is choreographed by David Morse.

Photo of a female ballerina posing in a gold outfit and tutu

November 3 – 5 | Music Hall’s Springer Auditorium 


Cincinnati Ballet presents Rep—2, George Balanchine’s masterpiece Jewels has been called the first full-length abstract ballet, and since its premiere in 1967, has remained one of Balanchine’s most-loved works.

The work is inspired by the artistry of jewelry designer Claude Arpels. The ballet is presented in three acts, distinctive in mood with music performed by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. Emeralds, the first section, evokes the 19th century dances of French Romantics and features the music of Fauré. Rubies is contemporary, witty and fiery, presenting great contrast to the first act and is a tribute to the collaboration of Balanchine and Stravinsky.

Diamonds recalls the grandeur of Imperial Russia where Balanchine grew up and trained. The act is the most majestic of the three and is more purely classical, utilizing music from Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 3.

Photo of a female ballet dancer posing with a wand in her left hand

December 14 – 24 |  Music Hall’s Springer Auditorium 

The Nutcracker

The Nutcracker returns in December, celebrating a favorite holiday tradition.

With spectacular choreography by Victoria Morgan, grand sets and costumes, and a beloved story, The Nutcracker also presents a remarkable cast of characters such as the Snow Queen and King, Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier, mischievous mice, brave toy soldiers, chicks and Minnie the Poodle.

The narrative follows a girl named Clara who receives a nutcracker on Christmas Eve. Her dreams take her on a great adventure to the amazing Land of Sweets. Accompanying this winter fantasy is the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra performing Tchaikovsky’s melodic score.

Dozens of local young performers join Cincinnati Ballet onstage for these performances. It’s a spectacular holiday treat for the entire family!

Photo of a male ballet dancer posing in an outfit for the Don Quijote show

February 16 – 25 |  Music Hall’s Springer Auditorium 

Don Quixote

Don Quixote follows its lead character in his knightly adventures with his loyal sword-bearer Sancho Panza in what has become known as ballet’s most famous romantic comedy.

Drawing on the translation by Edith Grossman, Don Quixote is a modern take on the medieval classic.  Cincinnati Ballet Artistic Director Jodie Gates developed the concept for the production with collaborators Gonzalo Garcia and Annabelle Lopez Ochoa. The ballet is set to a 19th century romantic score by Ludwig Minkus performed by the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra. The ballet was originally choreographed by Marius Petipa.

Audiences are immersed in an adventure filled with romance, tragedy, and comedy, including such famous scenes as the duel between Don Quixote and a windmill.  The ballet has long been acclaimed for its virtuoso dancing, and the choreography paints a story infused with the ideals of knighthood, chivalry, and Don Quixote’s love affair with Dulcinea.

Photo of two male ballet dancers leaping through the air with a white curtain behind them

April 5– 7 |  Aronoff Center for the Arts

Mercurial Landscapes

Cincinnati Ballet presents Rep 4—Mercurial Landscapes, featuring four dynamic contemporary works.

Mercurial Landscapes features the title work created by Artistic Director Jodie Gates, set to Max Richter’s ethereal re-composition of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons; a world premiere by Rena Butler, choreographic associate for the progressive Gibney Dance Company in New York, with costume design by Asha Ama Bias-Daniels, a Cincinnati-based fashion designer and artist; and Petit Mort and Sechs Tänze, set to the music of Mozart by Jiří Kylián, world renowned artistic director of Nederlands Dans Theater.

Photo of a ballerina in a pink costume and pink crown for the Sleeping Beauty performance

April 11 – 14 |  Aronoff Center for the Arts 

Family Series:
SLeeping Beauty

Cincinnati Ballet is proud to present a world premiere for the 2023-2024 Family Series: Sleeping Beauty, The Untold Story. The one-hour, narrated Family Series features CB2 dancers, along with performers from the Professional Training Division and young dancers from the Otto M. Budig Academy.

Set to Tchaikovsky’s brilliant score, this production reframes the classic story of Princess Aurora, the girl who is cursed to prink her finger and fall asleep for a hundred years. In this modern retelling, it’s Aurora herself who holds the power to break the wicked spell. With a positive message of empowerment, it’s a perfect introduction to ballet for children and adults alike.

Artistic Director Jodie Gates and Cincinnati Ballet Artistic Staff are developing a new vision for the classic fairytale ballet.

Photo of two male ballet dancers posing on stage in blue leotards

May 10 – 12 | Aronoff Center for the Arts 


Cincinnati Ballet’s 60th anniversary season concludes with Rep 5—Playlist, a collection of four one-act productions by groundbreaking artists.

Blake Works III is created by one of the world’s foremost choreographers, William Forsythe, set to the music of James Blake. The work follows in the footsteps of Blake Works I and II which have been called love letters to dancers and to the art of ballet itself.

Amy Seiwert, artistic director of Amy Seiwert’s Imagery, a contemporary ballet company in San Francisco, created It’s Not a Cry set to Jeff Buckley’s mesmerizing recording of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” The short work tells an emotional story about yearning for love.

Evermore by Dwight Rhoden, presents styles ranging from ballet to ballroom to Broadway and is set to the music of Nat King Cole. Rhoden is artistic director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet and has worked with and created for some of the most diverse artists spanning ballet and contemporary dance.

Rounding out the program is a world premiere by Peter Chu, an American dancer, choreographer and teacher known for pushing the physical bounds of dance.

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