DALLAS-FORT WORTH, Texas (June 7, 2022) – Texas Ballet Theater (TBT) today announced Artistic Director Ben Stevenson, O.B.E., the world-renowned choreographer who led its troupe for nearly 20 years, will assume a new role as Artistic Director Laureate starting July 1, 2022.
As the longest-serving Artistic Director in Company history, the Company bestows this new title upon Stevenson in honor of his accomplishments during his lengthy tenure. The 22-23 Season will be a celebration of his amazing work, beginning with his new, family-friendly production, Cirque du Ballet, and closing with his world famous production of Alice in Wonderland.
“Ben Stevenson is one of the great storytellers of ballet who has brought magic to the stages of Dallas and Fort Worth. It is impossible to overstate his importance in elevating our Company to the internationally acclaimed ensemble that it is today.” – Mrs. Anne Bass, TBT Board of Governors Chairman
After joining the Company in July of 2003, he established himself as a prominent member of the local arts community and demonstrated his commitment to the future of ballet through education, collaboration and his artistic vision.
A native of Portsmouth, England, Stevenson began his training at the Arts Education School in London. He appeared with the Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet and English National Ballet where, as a principal dancer, he performed leading roles in all the classics.
During his professional career, Stevenson received numerous awards for his choreography, including three gold medals at the International Ballet Competitions of 1972, 1982 and 1986. His contribution to ballet, as a dancer and a choreographer, influences the art of ballet at an international level. In December of 1999, Queen Elizabeth II named Stevenson an Officer of the Order of the British Empire.
Today, his choreography is both world-renowned and in high demand across ballet companies world-wide.
The Board of Governors today also announced TBT Associate Artistic Director Tim O’Keefe has been named Acting Artistic Director.
O’Keefe began his professional ballet career at Houston Ballet in 1982, where he was promoted to Soloist in 1985 and named a Principal Dancer in 1995. In 1997, he originated the titular role in Stevenson’s Dracula. O’Keefe has choreographed for Houston Ballet’s Cullen Contemporary Series and Houston Ballet Academy, as well as for TBT with works such as Love Thing, Ragtime Dance and Violin Concerto in D. He joined TBT in 2002.
“We are extraordinarily fortunate to have someone with the talent and experience of Tim O’Keefe to serve as Acting Artistic Director. Tim has been a key part of this Company for nearly two decades, and we are looking forward to his leadership.” – Mrs. Anne Bass, TBT Board of Governors Chairman
The Board of Governors will share details about a search for a permanent Artistic Director once timing is determined and looks forward to celebrating Stevenson throughout the coming season.