US ballet company based in Houston, Texas. In 1955 the Houston Ballet Foundation was formed and established a ballet academy with T. Semenova as its director. Its pupils gave occasional performances and in 1967 it staged Giselle under the direction of Nina Popova. The production's success prompted the Foundation to establish a fully professional company with Popova as artistic director. The Houston Ballet gave its first performance in 1968 with sixteen dancers and five ballets in its repertoire. In 1975 Popova was succeeded by James Clouser but the following year was replaced by Ben Stevenson, who directed the company for the next 27 years, expanding it to its present size of around 60 dancers. Stevenson created much of the repertory, including Cinderella, Peer Gynt, and The Snow Maiden as well as presenting 19th-century classics, such as P. Wright's production of Giselle. Other additions included Ashton's Two Pigeons, Cranko's The Lady and the Fool, and Lynne's Café soiré. Kenneth MacMillan was the company's artistic associate (1989–92), and Christopher Bruce its resident choreographer from 1989. In 2003 Stanton Welch was appointed director introducing works into the repertory from Forsythe, Wheeldon, and others, as well as choreographing his own ballets, including Marie (mus. Shostakovich, 2009). The company maintains close links with the Houston Ballet Academy.
http://www.houstonballet.org Website for Houston Ballet