American Ballet Theater appoints Beyoncé Associate as Executive Director

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A leader of Beyoncé’s business empire will be the next general manager of the American Ballet Theater, the dance company said on Tuesday.

Janet Rollé, Managing Director of Parkwood Entertainment, Beyoncé’s media and management company, will assume in January the role of Managing Director and General Manager of Ballet Theater, one of the country’s most prestigious ballet companies. Rollé, 59, who is black, will be the first person of color to lead the company.

In a statement, she said she would seek to “preserve and expand the legacy of the American Ballet Theater, and ensure its future prosperity, cultural impact and relevance.”

“Closing the loop and being able to give back to the art that has given me so much is a source of unbridled and immense joy,” said Rollé, who has long been interested in dance and was 8 years old when her mother , an immigrant from Jamaica, took her to her first class.

Rollé will face several immediate challenges, including helping the Ballet Theater recover from the turmoil of the pandemic, which resulted in the cancellation of two seasons and cost the company millions of dollars in ticket revenue and fees. planned tour. The pandemic has brought new urgency to the company’s efforts to attract new audiences and expand its donor base.

The company is also looking for an artistic director to replace Kevin McKenzie, who plans to leave next year after three decades in the role.

Andrew Barth, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Ballet Theater, said Rollé’s experience in marketing and strategy would be an asset. She has spent most of her career in the media industry, holding executive positions at CNN, Black Entertainment Television and AOL. She also sits on the Board of Directors of BuzzFeed.

“She’s brimming with ideas for leading ABT into the next decade, while respecting the history and legacy of the Ballet Theater,” said Barth.

Rollé succeeds Kara Medoff Barnett, who resigned earlier this year to take a job at First Republic Bank.


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