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timeline

Boston Ballet makes history

Edward Jenner/Globe Staff/File 1963

1963

  • E. Virginia Williams founds the Boston Ballet Company, New England’s first professional repertory ballet company.


1965

  • Boston Ballet makes its debut on Jan. 25 to a capacity crowd at John Hancock Hall. Later that year it presents its first performance of “The Nutcracker,” at the Back Bay Theatre. Arthur Fiedler is the conductor.

Paul Connell/Globe Staff

1980

  • Boston Ballet embarks on a world tour that includes 53 performances on two continents. It is the first American dance company to perform in the People’s Republic of China.

Globe file photo/1984

1980

  • Violette Verdy (right), director of the Paris Opera Ballet, is named artistic director.

1982

  • The company moves “The Nutcracker” to the Hynes Convention Center after the roof of the Metropolitan Theatre (now the Citi Wang Theatre) is declared unsafe.

1983

  • Boston Ballet presents “Don Quixote” on Broadway, with a guest appearance by Rudolf Nureyev.

1984

  • Violette Verdy resigns as artistic director, citing differences with the board and its chairman.

1985

  • Bruce Marks of Ballet West in Utah is appointed artistic director.

1990

  • Boston Ballet makes its debut at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

Mark Wilson/Globe Staff

1990

  • The company presents its “glasnost” “Swan Lake,” with guest stars from the Soviet Union.

1991

  • The company’s 60,000-square-foot Graham Gund-designed studio opens in the South End.

1997

  • Anna-Marie Holmes is promoted from within the Ballet and appointed artistic director.

Jim Davis/Globe Staff

2001

  • Mikko Nissinen of Calgary’s Alberta Ballet is named artistic director. He is hired after Maina Gielgud walks away before her first day on the job over complaints about her budget.

Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff

2004

  • The Ballet’s contract for “The Nutcracker” at the Wang Theatre is not renewed, and the production moves to the Colonial Theatre.

2009

  • In May, the company bids farewell to the Wang with Jorma Elo’s “Le Sacre du Printemps.” In September, it moves all productions to the Opera House after a renovation of the pit.

Fiona Hanson/Associated Press

2013

  • The Ballet offers six performances at the London Coliseum, capping a touring program that has since 2007 included Spain, South Korea, Canada, and Finland.

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