Ballet San Jose was originally created in 1985 as a co-venture with the Cleveland Ballet, which lasted for 15 years. In 2000, after the Cleveland Ballet dissolved, BSJ began functioning as a separate entity, lodged in a beautiful historic building that became its home base. Cleveland Ballet co-founder Dennis Nahat became BSJ’s Artistic Director, and began bringing the company into the limelight with his exceedingly high standards along with his prolific choreographic imagination. Recognized by the American Dance Guild and American Dance Masters for his lifetime achievement in dance, Nahat has won many awards for his over 80 original productions. The company itself has a repertory of over 120 works from choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Anthony Tudor, and George Balanchine.
BSJ presents its Nutcracker ballet every holiday season, along with several repertory programs from October through May. The company has toured mainland China, which inspired a collaboration with the Chinese choreographer Yong Yao on a ballet based on the mythological history of that country called Middle Kingdom-Ancient China. Other notable ballets include Nahat’s Blue Suede Shoes – with music by Elvis – for which he won an Emmy Award, and his powerful version of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana.
Along with their highly professional and beautifully executed performances, BSJ offers training for upcoming dancers along with community enrichment programs that help to develop audiences by exposing local residents to the beauty of dance. (MK)
Ballet San Jose Information
- Public Transportation: Good (a short walk from buses 81 and 201 at Almaden Boulevard/Park Avenue; and a 3-minute walk from buses 23 and 168, and Light Rail Lines 901 and 902 at the Convention Center Station)
- Handicapped Accessibility: Good
- Performances/Programs: Four different programs each year, plus the annual Nutcracker. There are three or four performances of each program. The Nutcracker runs about three weeks
- Ticket Prices: Range between $25 and $85. Students and seniors receive small discounts in selected seating areas
- Group Discounts: Packages are customized for groups of 10 or more. Discounts start at $5 per ticket
- Subscriptions: Subscriptions include performances of all four programs. Subscribers choose a Thursday, Friday, Saturday, or Sunday series and seating preferences. Small discounts are available for children and senior subscriptions. All ticket sales are final. Benefits include priority seating, ticket insurance, free or low-cost parking, invitations to subscribers-only events, and free ticket exchange privileges.