So sad. Not surprising, but still sad. It appears our very wealthy area isn’t willing to support things like the arts. I’m not sure if that will ever change, and it’s so frustrating.
The deeply troubled Silicon Valley Ballet has finally danced its swan song.
The leaders of South Bay’s major resident dance company, which has long danced on the brink of financial ruin, confirmed today that the troupe is closing its doors. Despite a successful do-or-die fundraising campaign last year, the ballet was unable to stay afloat. The shutdown impacts an estimated 32 staff members and 32 dancers, although the ballet school will likely continue to operate under new management.
“It’s very, very sad. This is very hard for me,” said a tearful Millicent Powers, co-chair of the Ballet San Jose board. “All I wanted was for this company to stay alive but in reality it’s a miracle that we lasted this long. We need to do the right thing for our artists, which is to let them go and audition for other things.”
San Jose Ballet Artistic Director José Manuel Carreño brought star power and strong leadership to Silicon Valley Ballet, but the company could not overcome
San Jose Ballet Artistic Director José Manuel Carreño brought star power and strong leadership to Silicon Valley Ballet, but the company could not overcome its financial problems and has announced it is closing. (LiPo Ching/staff archives) ( LiPo Ching )
The cash-strapped ballet, which was founded in 1986 as the “San Jose Cleveland Ballet” and teamed up with New York’s famed American Ballet Theatre in 2012, has faced many huge financial obstacles in recent years. Some programs flopped at the box office. The loss of a key donor, John Fry, CEO of Fry’s Electronics, who has donated more than $20 million to the troupe in the last decade, was a major blow. Other obstacles, including a big tax bill and thorny personnel issues, piled up and the ballet could not dig itself out from under.
“You fight one battle after another but can you win the war? How long can we keep doing this?” said Powers. “There’s so much heart here, if it were possible to make this happen, we would do it. But we just ran out of runway.”
I read it here.