Ballet Program Guest Gala Choreographer • June 13-19
2011 School Programs
In 2003, Stanton Welch assumed leadership of Houston Ballet, America's
fourth-largest classical ballet company. Since he took the helm of the company, Welch has revitalized Houston Ballet, bringing in new dancers, commissioning new works and attracting a top-flight artistic staff. Welch was born in Melbourne to Marilyn Jones, O.B.E. and Garth Welch, A.M., two of Australia's most gifted dancers of the 1960s and 1970s. In 1986, he began his training at the late age of seventeen, quickly winning a scholarship to San Francisco Ballet School. In 1989, he was engaged as a dancer with The Australian Ballet, where he rose to the rank of leading soloist, performing various principal roles. He has also worked with internationally acclaimed choreographers such as Jirí Kylían, Nacho Duato and Maurice Béjart. Welch's own career as a choreographer developed during his time with The Australian Ballet. In 1990, he received his first commission from the company, marking the beginning of a series of commissioned works over the next fourteen years and developing his diverse choreographic style. Welch was named resident choreographer of The Australian Ballet in 1995. Now one of the most sought after choreographers of his generation, Welch has created works for such prestigious companies as Houston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Birmingham Royal Ballet and Royal Danish Ballet. For Houston Ballet, he has choreographed seventeen works including a new full-length narrative ballet Marie (2009), inspired by the life of the legendary Marie Antoinette and spectacular stagings of Swan Lake (2006) and La Bayadère (2010).