Florida Ballet prepares for another big season

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The Florida Ballet has been a leader in dance education and performance for more than four decades. Founded in 1978 by Laurie Picinich-Byrd and Michael Byrd, the nonprofit organization serves the community through quality dance education, accessible community outreach opportunities, collaborative projects and a season of professional performances.

Located within the Arlington corridor of Jacksonville, the organization’s 30,000-square-foot facility at 10131 Atlantic Blvd., is home to its professional company, training center and conservatory. The training offered at The Florida Ballet is considered the finest in Northeast Florida, including comprehensive, age-appropriate, outcome-based programming incorporating the ABT National Curriculum. Programming is available for all ages, abilities and personal goals from novice to pre-professional, ages 3 to adult. 

In addition to dance education, The Florida Ballet exposes thousands of community members annually to the art of dance through free community outreach initiatives, including workshops, lectures and demonstrations held throughout numerous area counties and region.

Besides the organization’s work within the community, The Florida Ballet’s professional company, under the direction of Roberto Forleo, presents a season of performances featuring a mixture of classics, contemporary works and world premieres from well-known masters of ballet to internationally acclaimed choreographers.

During the 2022-23 season, the company will present more than 25 performances from October through May. Performances are held at a variety of venues from the organization’s own Picinich-Byrd Black Box Theatre to several other performing arts venues, including UNF Fine Arts Center, Thrasher-Horne Center for the Performing Arts, The Florida Theatre and the Jacksonville Symphony’s Jacoby Hall.

Season highlights will include world premieres choreographed by Christophe Garcia and Roberto Forleo. Balanchine’s Valse-Fantasie and Mauro Bigonzetti’s Songs will mark exciting milestones for the company to present these classical master works.

“Carmen,” “Don Quixote” and “Swan Lake” will be presented, as well as the beloved holiday classic “The Nutcracker,” bringing the magic and excitement of the holidays to audiences in the month of December.

Along with the mainstage season, The Florida Ballet will continue its Family Series performances with the annual staging of “Nutcracker in a Nutshell” and the premiere of “The Ant and the Grasshopper,” based upon the Aesop’s Fables classic. Both performances are designed to introduce children to the art of classical ballet.

With classic revivals, world-premieres and contemporary masterpieces, the 2022-23 season has something for everyone.

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