The Sacramento Ballet searches for a new director with a fresh vision

The board of the Sacramento Ballet did a pirouette of its own, causing an uproar on social media. After 29 years, artistic directors Ron Cunningham and Carinne Binda are leaving the Ballet—not of their own accord.

“We want to make it entirely clear that we are not retiring or resigning as Artistic Directors,” Cunningham and Binda wrote in a joint email. “The Ballet’s Board of Directors have decided that they need a ‘new vision’ and are terminating our employment at the end of the 2017-18 season.”

Binda started the ballet school, which has almost 400 students this year. The husband and wife will direct their last season until June 30, 2018, including performances of Peter Pan and Snap Shots II, the sequel to Cunningham’s own choreography showcase last year.

The board felt compelled to make a succession plan and create “Sac Ballet 2.0,” board president Nancy Garton told the Sacramento Bee.

In the meantime, it remains to be seen whether Cunningham’s daughter, ballerina Alexandra Cunningham, will continue her decade-long tenure at the Ballet. If so, she could become part of the “edgy” vision sought after in the new director. Regardless, the show goes on.

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