Since March plays host to Women’s History Month, here’s a shout out to a number of women who have each impacted Cincinnati Ballet in their own very unique and important ways:
- Myrl Laurence, Virginina Garrett and Nancy Bauer – Cincinnati Civic Ballet (as Cincinnati Ballet was originally known) was the brainchild of these three local ballet teachers.
- Peggy Kahn and Martha Berger – These women were the founding board members of Cincinnati Ballet. They both remained involved throughout their lives.
- Phyllis Gamboe DeWeese, Janet Carleton, Claudia Rudolf Barrett, Johanna Bernstein Wilt – These women were the first four Ballet Mistresses at Cincinnati Ballet.
- Victoria Morgan – Victoria has served as the Artistic Director for Cincinnati Ballet for 22 years. She’s also one of only five female artistic directors in the entire country.
- Jennifer Archibald – Jennifer is not only the first female resident choreographer for Cincinnati Ballet, but she is the first African American resident choreographer, as well.
- Other female founding members went on to have a considerable impact in the dance world. Among them are Jane E. Green (professor of dance at Northern Kentucky University), Jo Rowan (dance chair of the School of American Dance and Arts Management at Oklahoma City University), Linda Garner Miller (senior associate dean for Academic Affairs and Student Advancement at George Mason University), Peggy Lyman (principal dancer, Martha Graham Dance Company), and Patti Titchener (who later to change her name to Patti Astor).
- Claudia Rudolf Barrett, Janet Carleton, Phyllis DeWeese and Elaine Eckstein also helped to impact the dance world as teachers/choreographers.
- And, last but certainly not least, Diana Adams – Wardrobe Mistress Diana Adams (or “Mama Di” as she is known around Cincinnati Ballet), has been with Cincinnati Ballet for 47 years and will retire at the end of this season. As you can imagine, she’s had an impact on everyone at the Company and will be dearly missed!
Bravo and thank you to these amazing women, and all the others who have helped to make Cincinnati Ballet what it is today.