Company History | State Street Ballet

State Street Ballet: About

Company History

State Street Ballet, founded in 1994, is an internationally acclaimed dance company based in Santa Barbara, CA under the bi-coastal artistic direction of Rodney Gustafson and William Soleau. It is a pioneering collaborative supporting international ensemble dancers, and consistently striving for new and innovative artistic opportunities that serve a broad audience. Each season is dedicated to bringing the highest standards of artistry and original quality to tried and true classical favorites, plus original works that reflect the contemporary nature and talent of the ensemble. The company is comprised of 20 dancers representing six countries.

Choreographers whose works have been performed by State Street Ballet include Robert Battle, Autumn Eckman, Kevin Jenkins, Gina Patterson, Peter Pucci, Margo Sappington, Kassandra Taylor Newberry, Josie Walsh, and Edgar Zendejas, as well as the legendary Agnes de Mille and George Balanchine. Visionary new works draw from a team of resident choreographers including Artistic Directors Rodney Gustafson (The Nutcracker, Cinderella, Romeo & Juliet) and William Soleau (Carmen, An American TangoCarmina Burana) and San Francisco-based choreographer and Emmy Award winner Robert Sund (Alice in Wonderland, Beauty and the Beast, Taming of the Shrew).

State Street Ballet values artistic collaborations and arts outreach opportunities, and is committed to enriching every community we perform in, large or small. Inspiring future generations and reaching a broader, more diverse audience is consistently a priority. Successful collaborations with the Santa Barbara Symphony, Opera Santa Barbara, Music Academy of the West, and the Santa Barbara Choral Society have become very popular and much-anticipated Santa Barbara traditions.

State Street Ballet tours both nationally and internationally, boasting a 90% rebooking rate, rave reviews, and standing ovations from coast to coast. In 2015, the company embarked on a nine-week tour throughout China, performing Beauty and the Beast in 25 different cities, and the summer of 2017 brought the company an invitation to perform at the International Ballet Gala in Santiago, Chile. Touring productions currently include Chaplin, The Jungle Book, Ballroom, and The Nutcracker.