Houston Ballet Promotes Jessica Collado To Principal Dancer
Houston Ballet is proud to announce that Artistic Director Stanton Welch AM has promoted Jessica Collado to Principal dancer. Formally a First-Soloist, Ms. Collado was promoted on the evening of March 10, 2017 after starring in Stanton Welch's production of Cinderella in the title role.
"I am thrilled to be able to promote Jessica Collado to the rank of Principal at Houston Ballet. Jessica's complete devotion to the art form, her rich, detailed characters and her warm and encouraging personality make her a favorite, not just of audiences but of guest stagers, teachers and choreographers. Rarely a ballet is created here that she is not a pivotal part of, working with choreographers such as Christopher Bruce, William Forsythe, Jiri Kylian and Justin Peck. She is one of the most requested dancers by visiting choreographers. This is a much deserved recognition of her talent and impact here at Houston Ballet." - Stanton Welch AMMs. Collado was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and trained with the Gwinnett Ballet Theater, attending programs at South Carolina University and Boston Ballet during her summers. Between 2001-2003, Ms. Collado attended Houston Ballet's Academy Summer Intensives and spent a year with Houston Ballet II on full a scholarship, and upon her graduation from the academy in the spring of 2004, she received the Michael Wasmund Memorial Award. Ms. Collado joined Houston Ballet as an Apprentice in July 2004, was promoted to a Corps de Ballet member in July 2005, to Demi Soloist in March 2009, to Soloist in July 2011, and to First-Soloist July 2013.
About Houston Ballet
Houston Ballet has evolved into a company of 59 dancers with a budget of $33.2 million (making it the United States' fifth largest ballet company by number of dancers), a state-of-the-art performance space built especially for the company, Wortham Theater Center, the largest professional dance facility in America, Houston Ballet's $46.6 million Center for Dance which opened in April 2011, and an endowment of just over $70 million (as of January 2017).
Australian choreographer Stanton Welch AM has served as artistic director of Houston Ballet since 2003, raising the level of the company's classical technique and commissioning many new works from dance makers such as Christopher Bruce, Jorma Elo, James Kudelka, Trey McIntyre, Julia Adam, Natalie Weir, Nicolo Fonte, and Edwaard Liang. Executive Director James Nelson serves as the administrative leader of the company, a position he assumed in February 2012 after serving as the company's General Manager for over a decade.
Houston Ballet has toured extensively both nationally and internationally. Over the past fifteen years, the company has appeared in London at Sadler's Wells, at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Russia, in six cities in Spain, Montréal and Ottawa, at The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in New York at City Center and The Joyce Theater, at the Théâtre des Champs Elysées in Paris, at The Arts Center Melbourne State Theatre in Melbourne, Australia, in Los Angeles at The Music Center's Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, and in cities large and small across the United States. Houston Ballet has emerged as a leader in the expensive, labor-intensive task of nurturing the creation and development of new full-length narrative ballets.
Writing in Dancing Times in June 2012, dance critic Margaret Willis praised Houston Ballet and highlighted the fact that "during his own tenure, (Stanton) Welch has upped the standard and Houston Ballet now shows off a group of 55 dancers in splendid shape. With fast and tidy footwork, they are technically skillful and have strong, broad jumps and expansive, fluid movements. The dancers' musicality shines through their work, dancing as one with elegance and refinement - and they are a handsome bunch too!...if ballet were an Olympic sport, see Houston Ballet well on the way to achieving gold."
Houston Ballet Orchestra was established in the late 1970s and currently consists of 61 professional musicians who play all ballet performances at Wortham Theater Center under music director Ermanno Florio.
Houston Ballet's Education and Outreach Program has reached approximately 45,884 Houston area students (as of January 2017). Houston Ballet's Academy has over a thousand students and has had five academy students win awards at the prestigious international ballet competition the Prix de Lausanne, with one student winning the overall competition in 2010. For more information on Houston Ballet visit houstonballet.org.