The Joffrey Ballet Company was founded in 1956 by Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino. It originally started with 6 dancers that toured America in a station wagon. Robert Joffrey stayed behind in New York City to continue to teach ballet to support his new company.
Today they have 42 dancers and reside in Chicago, Illinois. They recently moved into their first permanent home, the Joffrey Tower, in downtown Chicago. The company however still continues to tour all over the US and the world.
The Joffrey Ballet is hailed “America’s Ballet Company of Firsts”. The list of firsts for this company are:
first dance company to perform at the White House at Jacqueline Kennedy’s request
first to appear on television
first American company to visit Russia
first classical dance company to go multi-media
first to commission a rock ‘n roll Ballet
first and only dance company to appear on the cover of Time Magazine.
The Academy of Dance is the official school of the Joffrey Ballet. The school just opened its doors in January 2009.
The Joffrey Ballet has appeared in two films, Save the Last Dance and The Company, a movie that is based on stories of the people of the Joffrey Ballet Company.