Press Release


10th Anniversary Season opens with Nicolo Fonte full-length world premiere

Philadelphia, PA—BalletX, Philadelphia’s Premier Contemporary Ballet and the Resident Dance Company of The Wilma Theater, launches it’s 10th Anniversary 2015-2016 Season with Fall Series 2015 (November 18-22). The company, praised for its “suspense, vitality, comedy, freedom” (The New York Times), presents Beasts, an evening-length world premiere by internationally-renowned choreographer Nicolo Fonte.

Fall Series 2015

Fonte returns to BalletX after the success of his 2013 full-length ballet Beautiful Decay, hailed by The Dance Journal as “an evening of explosive, athletic dance that leaves the audience speechless.” His new work, Beasts, will explore the sociological debate of nature versus nurture, examining how biology and environment converge to form one’s identity. Based on tabula rasa, the idea that every person begins as a blank slate from which experiences shape and mold humanity, Fonte will investigate the dramatic contrasts of learned behavior and primal human instinct to explore the tension between nobility and savageness. Tackling this intellectual subject matter, Beasts will challenge the traditional “story ballet” to address the human condition with honesty and vigor.

This new work will incorporate lighting design by Drew Billiau, costume design by Christine Darch, and original sets by Obie Award-winning scenic designer Mimi Lien, whose work has been celebrated for being able to “solve complex problems with visually arresting designs” (American Theater). The world premiere of Beasts promises to stretch movement to its expressive limits, providing a bold new approach to a full-length narrative ballet through an unforgettable dance experience.

Born in Brooklyn, Fonte trained at the Joffrey Ballet School, San Francisco Ballet, and School of American Ballet before receiving his BFA from SUNY Purchase. A daring and unique dancemaker, Fonte has created work for such companies as The Dutch National Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and Stuttgart Ballet, in addition to being the Resident Choreographer for Ballet West and one of Aspen Santa Fe Ballet’s most popular guest choreographers. His inventive fusion of ideas, movement, and design creates a signature dance language praised as “highly original… fluid and complex, and exhilarating to watch” (Dance Europe).

Having commissioned 58 world premieres by dynamic and distinguished choreographers over the past nine seasons, BalletX has emerged at the forefront of contemporary dance by commissioning new work that redefines ballet in the 21st century. The 10th Anniversary Season celebrates the many milestones in BalletXs rich history as it continues to push the art form into unchartered territory. With seven world premieres, four performance series, and ten pop-up performances, the 2015-2016 Season is the company’s most daring yet, and it commences with Nicolo Fonte’s full-length world premiere for Fall Series 2015.

Performances run November 18-12 at The Wilma Theater, 265 South Broad Street, Philadelphia. Tickets start at $22 for students, $30 for seniors, and $35 for adults.

Members of the press are invited to attend Opening Night on Wednesday, November 18, 2015 at 8PM. For press tickets, please contact Allie Vanyur at 215-893-9456 x128 or

Fall Series 2015 Performance Dates/Times:
Wednesday, November 18, 8:00PM, Opening Night
Thursday, November 19, 8:00PM
Friday, November 20, 8:00PM
Saturday, November 21, 2:00PM
Saturday, November 21, 8:00PM
Sunday, November 22, 2:00PM
Sunday, November 22, 7:00PM

Fall Series 2015 will see the continuation of The X-Process, an audience engagement initiative that began in
2013. During each performance series, The X-Process features a Q&A event (Conversations with the Artists) and an interactive lecture and demonstration (A Pie, A Pint & The Process). During Fall Series 2015, (moderator), Nicolo Fonte, and Mimi Lien will discuss the creative process during Conversations with the Artists. The Fall Series programming for A Pie, A Pint & The Process will focus on the psychology of movement and thought processes behind choreography and composition.

The X-Process Events:
Wednesday, November 18, 7:00PM - Conversations with the Artists (free)
Saturday, November 21, 4:00PM - The X-Process ($5)

About BalletX: BalletX unites world-class choreographers with an outstanding company of professional dancers to forge new works of athleticism, emotion, and grace. Founded in 2005 by Christine Cox and Matthew Neenan and now under the direction of Cox as Artistic & Executive Director, BalletX challenges the boundaries of classical ballet by encouraging formal experimentation while preserving rigorous technique. The Company is committed to producing new works of the highest quality and integrity that bring the combined visions of choreographers and dancers to life and cultivate in audiences a collective appetite for bold new dance.

BalletX 2015-2016 10th Anniversary Season is made possible through the generous support of: The William Penn Foundation, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Wyncote Foundation, PECO, The Sporting Club at the Bellevue, Shubert Foundation, Vista at Top of the Tower, AKA Rittenhouse, Philadelphia Cultural Fund, Suzanne Roberts Cultural Development Fund, Leo Model Foundation, Samuel S. Fels Fund, Marathon Grill, Victory Brewing Company, Moore Brothers Wine Company, and Pennsylvania Council on the Arts.


Media Contact:
Allison Vanyur
Marketing & Communications Coordinator
215- 893-9456 x128