Janet Rollé, ‘Morning Joe’ Contributor, Named ABT CEO



I am very, very excited about this new position,” Rollé said. “I feel very lucky that this has come about. From what I’ve seen of the American Ballet Theatre and the amazing school here in New York, I believe that the American Ballet Theatre has to stay alive. I feel like this is a perfect role for me.”

The ballerina, who attended New York’s prestigious Phillips Academy Andover and then McGill University in Montreal, was named The New York Times’ ballet critic in 1986 and has been a guest curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute since 2007.

Rollé, who came to the New York ballet company by way of the National Ballet of Canada, has also appeared on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and will likely be seen more frequently on “So You Think You Can Dance.”

“I’m not sure what it means, to be honest, to become CEO at the American Ballet Theatre,” she told the Times’ ballet critic. “This will allow me to fulfill a lifelong dream, but first and foremost, to wake up each day wanting to do my job as best as I can. What am I going to do differently than I was doing it when I was the artistic director? There is no reason at all for me to behave any differently, except to invest myself as much as I did then in the ballet.”

The 27-year-old New Yorker most recently served as the company’s artistic director, but a letter sent to employees last month revealed that the company had made room for “significant changes” at the top.

“The Board is confident that the Company has many successes ahead, with major growth and achievement in the next 15 years,” the letter stated. “There is a need to accelerate these developments, both in terms of strategy and execution, to take full advantage of all that our world-class programs, people and facilities have to offer.”

Rollé, who was named one of Time’s 50 Most Influential People in 2011, hopes to help lead those changes.

“I love what we do at the ABT,” she said. “I hope to make sure that the company continues to stay as a cutting-edge company.”

Tango and ballet seem a match made in heaven. That dance is more popular in Latin America, and more Latin Americans participate in dance than any other culture group. But they rarely dance together, even though ballet has been linked to Tango for centuries. Check out some of the hottest couples around.

Their heritage has certainly played a part in their dance artistry, but they also embody some of the elements of the graceful language they learned in Tango: syncopation, allure, an inflexible head, and épaulement, a rigorous, almost iron-clad attitude.

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I am very, very excited about this new position. I feel very lucky that this has come about. From what I’ve seen of the American Ballet Theatre and the amazing school here in New York, I believe that the American Ballet Theatre has to stay alive. I feel like this is a perfect role for me. — Janet Rollé (@JanetRollé) July 25, 2017

Listen to part 1 of [email protected] song. Dance is infectious, you can dance a Tango without touching your head. — Janet Rollé (@JanetRollé) July 25, 2017

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