Oklahoma Festival Ballet

The Oklahoma Festival Ballet is the resident ballet company of the University of Oklahoma. The company maintains a repertoire of over 33 short ballets and numerous full-length ballets in styles ranging from classical to romantic, abstract to contemporary and dramatic to comedic. Such choreographers as Massine, Balanchine, Terekhov, Fokine, Stevenson and Joffrey are represented in the repertoire.

The Oklahoma Festival Ballet is a company of 40 dancers. The company is efficiently organized for touring and boasts an impressive national and international touring schedule, which has included performances in Taiwan, Mexico, Ecuador, Austria and France.

Oklahoma Festival Ballet is proud of its graduates, who have gone on to perform with companies such as the Boston Ballet, Houston Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Louisville Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Ballet Nouveau, Cincinnati Ballet, Ballet Arizona, Atlanta Ballet, Pittsburg Ballet Theatre and Ballet Ireland.

Guest artists from companies such as Cincinnati Ballet, Ballet Austin, Tulsa Ballet Theatre, Nashville Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and Ballet Arizona frequently perform and work with the Oklahoma Festival Ballet. Recent guests include Kathleen Tracey and Zippora Karz representing the Balanchine Trust; Bruce Wells of Pacific Northwest Ballet Academy; Virginia Johnson, former ballerina of Dance Theatre of Harlem and current editor of Pointe magazine; Mary Munro; noted international critic and historian, Camille Hardy; Dennis Poole and Clara Cravey, former Houston Ballet Academy Principal.

Selected Repertoire

Afternoon of a Faun
(L’après Midi D’un Faune)
Les Buffons
Carmina Burana
Concerto Barocco
Le Corsaire Pas De Deux
The Firebird
The Four Moons
Graduation Ball
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
The Nutcracker
Romeo and Juliet Pas de Deux
Sleeping Beauty, Act III
Stars and Stripes Pas De Deux
Swan Lake, Act II
Valse Fantaisie
Verdi Divertimento
Weill Songs

Contemporary Dance Oklahoma

Contemporary Dance Oklahoma, founded as Modern Repertory Dance Theatre and directed until 1998 by Ko Yukihiro, is the resident modern dance company of the University of Oklahoma. An ensemble of 40 dancers, CDO offers the spectator an array of modern dance, dramatic and abstract works. For over 20 years, CDO has performed in OU’s Elise C. Brackett and Historic Holmberg Hall Theatres and frequently engages in regional, national and international tours (including China, Japan, and Paraguay). Appearances at regional festivals and conferences have led to invitations to perform at American College Dance Association (ACDA) galas and at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

Dancers from CDO have gone on to perform with the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Ailey II, Graham 2, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Dance Kaleidoscope, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, Verb Ballets and Jennifer Muller/The Works. CDO repertoire includes historical modern dance works by Merce Cunningham, Paul Taylor, and Martha Graham, and also contemporary choreographers such as Sidra Bell, Tommie Waheed Evans, Claude Alexander III, and Jessica Lang

Associate Professor Roxanne Lyst is the current director of CDO. Previous directors have included Denise Vale (1998-2003) and Associate Professor Austin Hartel (2003-2020)

Selected Repertoire

Another Prayer
Bothy Breed
Cloven Kingdom
Double Knots
Dreaming of Night
First Chapter, Second Paragraph
For Love
How to Pass, Kick, Fall, and Run
Me My Mo Mu Mu

Near Light
Night Spell
Offering Song
On the Wings of Joy
Primitive Moon
Seasons Of Japan
When Angels Fall