Cincinnati Ballet announces new strategic plans with bold vision, unveils new brand

This week, the Cincinnati Ballet announced a number of exciting developments and initiatives, which will be implemented as part of a long-term strategy for sustained growth and advancement, kicking off with the launch of the 2017-2108 Season.

The “new” Cincinnati Ballet encompasses a number of dynamic changes, including an eye-catching, refreshed logo and brand identity for the Company, the launch of the Otto M. Budig Academy’s Professional Training Division, the Company’s return to Music Hall for three productions, the introduction of a brand new Family Series, and a groundbreaking partnership with Ballet West to co-present a World Premiere production. 

“2017-2018 is a watershed season for us,” says President & CEO Scott Altman. “Never before has Cincinnati Ballet presented such a wide and far-reaching landscape of ballet offerings. We are also elevating and optimizing our resources in many tangible ways in order to support solid, sustainable expansion for our future. This includes identifying and implementing a number of new and compelling ways to connect with our current and prospective audiences, both on-stage and off.”

Cincinnati Ballet’s dynamic new logo and brand identity is the most significant change to the organization’s visual identity in more than 15 years. It is the product of a partnership with Cincinnati-based, global brand design agency, LPK. The LPK team drew its inspiration from insights shared by key Cincinnati Ballet stakeholders and community members, creating a representation as to how Cincinnati Ballet fits into both the global dance sphere and the Cincinnati community.

“Cincinnati Ballet is creating some of the most delightfully inventive and exciting work among dance companies,” says LPK’s Senior Creative Director, Alan Kaster. “LPK is thrilled to have partnered with the ballet to give them a brand mark and design assets that reflect that spirit.” Cincinnati Ballet will continue to roll out the new look in the weeks leading up to the season’s opening on September 14. 

Also on tap, Cincinnati Ballet Artistic Director, Victoria Morgan, announces that the 2017-2018 Dancer Roster includes eight new hires and five promotions, including Sirui Liu who moves from Senior Soloist to Principal, and Chisako Oga who moves from Soloist to Principal. Cincinnati Ballet’s Otto M. Budig Academy also launched its Professional Training Division August 7. The new division is an elite 38-week training program designed to support the transition from ballet student to professional dancer.

For the 2017-2018 Season, Cincinnati Ballet will join Cincinnati Symphony and Pops Orchestras, Cincinnati Opera and May Festival as a Music Hall resident performing Company. The five-week Music Hall Grand Opening Celebration will include six performances of Victoria Morgan’s passionate and powerful Romeo & Juliet, October 26 through 29, 2017. Other 2017-2018 productions performed at Music Hall will include Frisch’s Big Boy Presents The Nutcracker, December 14 through 24, and Carmina Burana + Serenade, February 8 through 11.

Cincinnati Ballet’s new annual Family Series will kick off with an inaugural production of Beauty and the Beast, April 6 through 8, 2018, with six performances featuring the Cincinnati Ballet Second Company and students from the Otto M. Budig Academy. The new annual Family Series is a perfect introduction to ballet for audiences of all ages, with dazzling costumes and sets and guided narration so that even the youngest members of the audience can comprehend the story on stage. The Family Series will continue as an ongoing annual production in the seasons ahead so that patrons may create lasting ballet traditions with family and friends.

Finally, Cincinnati and Ballet West are teaming up to present a world premiere this season, a new production of Carmina Burana. This groundbreaking collaboration marks the first of its kind in Cincinnati Ballet history. Choreographed by Nicolo Fonte, Carmina Burana will premiere at Ballet West in Salt Lake City on November 3, and with Cincinnati Ballet on February 8, performed with the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the May Festival Chorus at Music Hall. Fonte is known for his daring and original approach to choreography, and has worked with esteemed companies such as The Dutch National Ballet, Houston Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet.

Alex ReillyCULTURE