Ethan Stiefel's Ballet Pacifica Cancels 2006-07 Season

Classic Arts News   Ethan Stiefel's Ballet Pacifica Cancels 2006-07 Season
Southern California's Ballet Pacifica, which had planned to relaunch itself as a higher-profile company in 2006-07, has instead canceled the entire season, the Los Angeles Times reports.

The Irvine-based company hired American Ballet Theatre star Ethan Stiefel as artistic director in late 2004; he later announced plans for tours, a larger, permanent ensemble of experienced dancers, a longer season, and performances of The Nutcracker at the Orange County Performing Arts Center.

But in order to carry out Stiefel's plans, the company had to increase its annual budget from $1.5 million to $6.5 million. Despite a record number of pledges, the company was unable to raise enough money to carry out the season as planned.

"I am deeply saddened that Ballet Pacifica will not have a 2006-07 season," Stiefel said in a statement. "The board's heart is in the right place, but it has been unable to provide me with sufficient confidence to hire dancers for this season."

The company plans to return to the stage in 2007. "We feel that an extra 12 months will put us in a much stronger position and that there would be no comprising Ethan's vision," board president Janet Ray told the Times.

The paper also reported that executive director Thomas Gulick had resigned "for personal reasons."

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