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Svetlana Svinko and Narek Martiroysan

Cleveland patrons have enjoyed three different iterations of Cleveland Ballet throughout the city’s history. Ballet was first introduced to Clevelanders in 1935 by what was alternatively called the Popeloff Ballet. Thirty years after it closed in 1942, former American Ballet Theatre dancers Dennis Nahat and Ian Horvath created the second Cleveland Ballet which achieved international acclaim through tours and performing with the late Rudolf Nureyev during the 1990 Edinburgh Festival. The company left Cleveland in 2000 to relocate to San Jose, California.

The current ballet was formed by Michael Krasnyansky and Gladisa Guadalupe in 2014 and had its first performance in 2015. In just two years, Cleveland Ballet became a resident company of the prestigious Playhouse Square. The Balanchine Trust in 2023 awarded Cleveland Ballet the right to perform George Balanchine's Serenade with a live orchestra.

In 2024, Timour Bourtasenkov with his extensive national and international credentials was appointed Artistic Director from his position as Director of Repertoire. At the same time, the Board of Directors named long-time board member, Larry Goodman, as the interim President and CEO to align the company’s vision with a sustainable business model. Goodman was appointed to the role permanently in April 2024. 

Bourtasenkov has infused Cleveland Ballet with an elevated artistic caliber and expanded repertoire with acclaimed choreographers and productions. Now in its ninth season, Cleveland Ballet has established itself as a major player on Cleveland's cultural scene.

Nationally recognized for its commitment to innovation, diversity, and creativity, Cleveland Ballet is dedicated to nurturing the next generation of ballet enthusiasts through the Academy of Cleveland Ballet, its robust community impact program, and accessible programs such as Pay What You Can.


The mission of Cleveland Ballet is to present world class dance on stage through classical and contemporary works; ensuring that ballet works are accessible and relevant to audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Cleveland Ballet creates dance and community impact programs of the highest levels of excellence, reaching deeply into the hearts of our community to inspire audiences.​

Cleveland needs a professional ballet company that local residents can call their own; a company whose home is here and represents us as a city; a company on which we can rely to perform again and again, creating and sustaining traditions and nurturing the appreciation of one of the most dramatic, elegant, and powerful art forms.

Our resident professional ballet Company contributes to the cultural richness of our community, impacting the economy as well as our quality of life. Businesses benefit as visitors, re-locating executives, and recent college graduates enjoy and appreciate yet another impressive example of the diversity and depths of Cleveland’s cultural fabric.

Cleveland Ballet, your very own resident professional ballet Company, engages and inspires audiences like no visiting ballet company can. Exposure to performances, regular community impact activities, and high quality educational programs in partnership with schools, non-profits, and other local arts organizations positively impact students’ achievements and competencies.


Cleveland Ballet believes in the representation of culture and racial diversity as an essential element for the art form of ballet. The company recognizes its responsibility in developing a community that stands for equality and inclusion, and recognizes that it must take intentional steps, through its procedures, guidelines, and actions to fulfill this responsibility.

Our vision is to reflect the rich cultural diversity of this and other countries; Cleveland Ballet strongly believes in taking the initiative to attract, retain and cultivate the most talented dancers, artists, arts administrators, designers, and stage technicians from diverse and varied backgrounds.

Cleveland Ballet pledges a commitment to reflect the diversity of our communities throughout the organization, including its Board of Directors. The Board invites and promotes the inclusion of different perspectives, and the development of a culture of belonging that is equitable and free of discrimination and conscious and unconscious bias. These are ongoing, iterative processes, and Cleveland Ballet recognizes that it must creatively adapt and innovate over time to address systemic racism, sexism, elitism and other forms of discrimination within the industry and our communities.

To this end, Cleveland Ballet aspires to use dance as a bridge between culture, language, race, ethnicity, nationality, gender, age, socio-economic status, physical ability, religion, sexual orientation and identity. Dance is the unique experience of individuals that fuels art and creativity, and the future of ballet depends on its ability to be welcoming and inclusive and to attract new and more diverse audiences. Cleveland Ballet desires to share the beauty of dance with all persons.

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