60th Season Ends with Record-Breaking Attendance, Highest-Grossing Productions in Company History, and Continuing Balanced Budget

Ballet West closes its 60th anniversary with record-breaking attendance of more than 80,000 patrons, leading to an all-time high with Swan Lake, now the highest-grossing non-Nutcracker production in company history and the 2023 Nutcracker, as the highest grossing run in company history.

The 2023-24 Season marks the 4th year in a row with a balanced budget for Ballet West. Its operating budget makes it the 9th largest ballet company in America, yet the Salt Lake City metropolitan area ranks 41st in population. The company’s operating budget has grown by 33% over five years and the subscriber base has increased by 10% for a third consecutive year. Ballet West is leading the way in financial stability amongst arts organizations.

Ballet West Bucking the Arts Industry Trend

In an industry where many professional dance companies are seeing a decrease in revenues, what is Ballet West doing differently that is bucking the trend? Ballet West Executive Director Michael Scolamiero and Artistic Director Adam Sklute, working closely with Ballet West’s Board of Directors and numerous supporters, have transformed the company’s strategic plan that has secured a strong path to financial health and growth in community impact.

“A fundamental change in how seasons were put together was required in order to ensure the financial stability of the organization while also maintaining artistic integrity,” said Scolamiero. “Changing everything from schedules, to number of performances, as well as repertoire, were key priorities that have resulted in improved financial performance and increased paid capacity without compromising the artistry.”

One of Country’s Largest Community Education and Academy Programs

Ballet West also attributes success to its recognition as one of the world’s largest ballet-based Education and Outreach programs, reaching more than 110,000 children and adults throughout Utah and the Intermountain Region every year.

Ballet West is also home to the fourth-largest professional ballet school in the country, with the Frederick Q. Lawson Ballet West Academy and its four campuses (Jessie Eccles Quinney Ballet Center downtown, Trolley Corners, Pleasant Grove in Utah County, and the Peggy Bergmann Park City Campus), serving more than 1,000 students annually. Nearly all graduating students from the professional training programs leave with dance contracts or college acceptances.

With this eclectic and ever-expanding outlook, Ballet West is truly an American pioneer in the world of dance. By honoring the history and traditions of the artform, while constantly moving forward with new and untried concepts, the company continues to keep ballet in Utah and the world alive and thriving into the 21st Century and beyond.

ABOUT BALLET WEST 

BALLET WEST, one of America’s leading ballet companies, under the artistic direction of Adam Sklute, has earned an international reputation for artistic innovation and excellence since its founding in 1963. For 60 years, the Salt Lake City-based Company has entertained and excited audiences in Utah and worldwide by presenting great classical ballets, historical masterpieces, including America’s first and longest-running version of The Nutcracker, and new cutting-edge creations with only the highest artistic and professional standards. The Company continues to build future ballet artists and audiences by providing classical ballet training through the Frederick Q. Lawson Ballet West Academy and its four campuses and more than 1,000 students. Ballet West also operates one of the largest outreach and education programs in the country which reaches over 100,000 children and adults throughout Utah and the Intermountain Region every year. The 23/24 Season is generously sponsored by Salt Lake Zoo, Arts & Parks, George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, and Intermountain Health.