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An Interview with Peter Anastos

Peter Anastos

With the end of Swan Lake comes the end of an era – Peter Anastos, artistic director for the last 10 years, will be taking his leave of Ballet Idaho and beginning his retirement. Our Marketing Director, Meredith Stead, sat down with him to talk about both his journey of the past ten years, as well as his plans for the future.

What are you most proud of during your ten years with Ballet Idaho?

Well, pride is a process: I’m very grateful to have been given the opportunity, by AJ Balukoff, Mrs. Simplot, and the Board in 2008, to form a company from scratch. We all took a huge gamble, but I’m proud to say we’ve survived. Just keeping the Ballet company running for 10 years makes me proud of our community. I’m proud of the way we have shaped and defined Ballet Idaho, and certainly for bringing the ballets of George Balanchine here. Finally, I’m proud that Ballet Idaho is now a known and respected company on the ballet world’s map. We did it!

What were the toughest challenges that you faced?

Always and forever, the biggest challenge is fund raising. But we’ve continued to grow as a company, refine our efforts, enlarge our donor base, make new friends every year. Although we’ve been through some dicey times, we’ve never missed a payroll!

What are some of the biggest changes you’ve seen take place over the years in the company?

One big change is the size of our audience. We started small, I have to admit. But the change is positive and it’s the confidence and support our community has shown in the company after 10 years. Our audience is large and growing, we have touched so many people’s lives, educated so many students, introduced so many people to the joy of ballet. We have also seen change in our repertoire, adding more contemporary work (which has a very sizeable fan base) and, again, adding the ballets of my hero, George Balanchine. His ballets create an audience by their genius and their accessibility.

As you pass off the torch, do you have any advice to give to Garrett Anderson, our new Artistic Director?

I wouldn’t presume to give him advice, except to say “be strong.” The Artistic Director is the company’s leader, it’s head and heart, and everything that the company does should flow from the vision of the Artistic Director. There is no such thing as a good ballet company without a great Director. I have no doubt Garrett Anderson will continue to improve and grow Ballet Idaho. It’s a very exciting adventure for him, for the company and for the community. I wish him God speed.

What would you wish for Ballet Idaho ten years from now?

I would wish for more work week for the dancers, better pay, more performances. I wish that in 10 years Ballet Idaho is a major national treasure and the pride of Idaho.

What are your plans for post retirement?

People like me don’t really ever “retire.” I have some interesting freelance choreography projects coming up next year in the US and also a developing project in Japan. That should be exciting. But first I will be catching my breath with a summer vacation to Norway and Russia. Want to bet I won’t be able to keep away from ballet performances? Also, I plan to stay in Boise, a wonderful place to live. We love our home, have many friends here, and I look forward to watching the continued growth and success of Ballet Idaho.

2018/19 Season Dates Announced

2018/19 Season Dates Announced

Please mark your calendars for our thrilling 2018/19 season.

Programming TBA.

Fall Gala at JUMP – Oct 13, 2018
NewDance fall series – November 8 – 11, 2018
The Nutcracker – December 13 – 16, 2018
Winter Repertory – February 8 – 9, 2019
NewDance spring series – March 7 – 10, 2019
Spring Story Ballet – May 3 – 4, 2019

Ballet Idaho Announces New Artistic Director

Ballet Idaho Announces New Artistic Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 20, 2018
Contact: Meredith Stead, Marketing Director
208.343.0556 Ext. 222,


Boise ID — Ballet Idaho announced today that Garrett Anderson has been named the Artistic Director, following a nationwide search to replace retiring Peter Anastos. Anderson will join the company in July.

“It is with great enthusiasm that we welcome Garrett into our Ballet Idaho family,” said Randy Anderson (no relation), Ballet Idaho’s Board President. “His commitment to artistic excellence, community engagement and collaboration, development of new work, and classic favorites will resonate with our audience. Garrett has an impressive background in classical ballet and contemporary dance. He has also danced with Trey McIntyre Project and LED, so he is familiar with Boise and its audiences. Working with our search committee of representatives from the Board, staff, and dancers, I believe we have made an excellent selection for the future of our company.”

“I am eager to work with these artists and administrators to connect with the larger conversation Boise is having about its future,” said Anderson upon his appointment. “Together we can continue to extend Ballet Idaho’s work throughout the region and expand its artistic voice. Looking forward, my goal is to continue a legacy that is inclusive of all audiences, while pushing the boundaries of dance and helping to define its relevance in our community. My aim is to continue to bring great artists to Boise and to expose the dancers and our audience to a variety of choreographic perspectives. I am honored to join this organization at an exciting time in the development of its identity and the vital role it holds in this community. “

About Garrett Anderson:
Garrett began his training in Walnut Creek, CA under the direction of Richard Cammack and Zola Dishong at the Contra Costa Ballet Centre. He went on to study on scholarship at San Francisco Ballet school and then in the professional division at Pacific Northwest Ballet. In 2001, Garrett joined San Francisco Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet and in 2005 was promoted to soloist.

After seven years in San Francisco, he and his wife left the company in 2008 to join the Royal Ballet of Flanders in Antwerp, Belgium, where he danced as a first soloist. There, they toured extensively throughout Europe and the world. In January of 2011, he returned to the United States to dance with Trey McIntyre Project. Following this, he joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in August of 2011, where he danced a number of leading roles in work created on the company.

In August of 2016 Garrett became Chair of the Dance Department at New Mexico School for the Arts in Santa Fe. He has since performed two seasons with SF Danceworks in San Francisco for which he was named as one of the years outstanding male performers by Dance Europe in 2016. Garrett has also been a guest artist with LED, Ballet Chicago, Civic ballet of Chicago, and Chicago Reparatory Ballet. Garrett was the recipient of the American Ballet Theatre national dance scholarship and holds a B.A. from St. Mary’s college of California.

Garrett, his wife Courtney and their two boys, Rowan and Kellan, are so excited to be a part of the Ballet Idaho family and the larger Boise community. “My wife and I have visited many times since working here in 2011. We have both been fortunate to have had dance careers that have taken us many places and are so thrilled to finally be able to make Boise our home.”

View 2018/19 season dates here.

Since 1972, Ballet Idaho has enriched lives through classical ballet and served as a dynamic reflection of the Boise community. Ballet Idaho is the only professional ballet company and academy in the state of Idaho, bringing together the highest level of dance excellence with a commitment to education and training. For more information, visit

Editors: Photo and interview opportunities are available. We would be happy to help in making this a feature story for your publication.

We are hiring! Apply for the Development Director position

Director of Development Job Description

Working with Executive Director and the board of directors, this position will oversee formulating and implementing fundraising goals, strategies and programs, including but not limited to, annual gifts for operating capital, corporate sponsorship and support, capital campaigns for production assets, special event fund-raiser management and long-term fund development, including a planned giving program and an endowment.

The successful candidate will possess a strong entrepreneurial spirit and have experience in successful fundraising and strategic planning with quantifiable knowledge and solid relationship-building skills within the arts and education fields. Demonstrated fund development success required. Demonstrated experience with donor and patron relations and excellent communication skills are also necessary.

Excellent teamwork, presentation, organizational and analytical skills are essential with detailed and accurate financial forecasting ability. Proficiency in MS office suite is required along with other donor relations software systems. Bachelor’s/Master’s degree in arts/education preferred or corresponding career experience.

The Director of Development (DoD) provides the leadership and direction for Ballet Idaho’s comprehensive fundraising program. The DoD manages and implements Ballet Idaho’s development plan including but not limited to, Trustee Giving, Major Gifts, Membership, Corporate Sponsorships and Support, Foundation and Government Grants, Annual & Capital Giving Campaigns, Prospect Management and Special Events.
Creation of annual fund-raising budget to include income and expenses for the department. Creation of specific strategies and tactics to facilitate the fulfillment of budgetary goals.

Specific responsibilities include:
• Guide and prepare Board members in identifying, cultivating, and engaging donors
• Work closely with the Executive Director to identify prospective leadership for Ballet Idaho’s Board of Directors, Board committees, and gala fundraising events
• In conjunction with senior staff, devise, and recommend strategies for organization’s long-term fundraising objectives
• Report to executive leadership and Board of Directors on a bi-monthly basis
• Attend Board Meetings, Committee Meetings, Ballet Idaho performances, and other organizational events as appropriate
• Manage ongoing donor communication via verbal, written, and electronic correspondence, and ensure that all donor relationship information is recorded in Ballet Idaho’s database

Annual Campaign, Sponsorship, Major Gifts and Special Events:
• Meet expected revenue goals slated for all areas of giving (Individual gifts, Corporate Giving, Foundation/Government Grants, Special Events, special campaigns)
• Adhere to expense guidelines as set forth in the annual budget
• Research, cultivation, and stewardship of prospective donors corporate, foundation, and individual
• Creation and implementation of direct mail campaigns, sponsorship materials, and other projects
• Oversee donor recognition program
• Oversee planning and execution of numerous cultivation/recognition events and activities annually including but not limited to: Academy fundraiser, Fall Gala, Pre-performance dinners, Open rehearsals, Post performance events, backstage tours and cultivation events

Data Management and Materials Development:
• Develop methods to ensure proper acknowledgement and recognition of donors
• Maintain database, files and records of development activities involving identifying, cultivating, soliciting and tracking gifts from individuals, corporations, foundations and other fundraising activities
• Participate in the development of fundraising materials

Email resume, cover letter and references to

Behind the Ballet: An Interview with Daniel Ojeda

Behind the Ballet: An Interview with Daniel Ojeda

With the Fleetwood Mac Collection just around the corner, our Marketing Assistant, Alanna Love, sat down with Choreographer and Company Dancer, Daniel Ojeda, to get a sneak peek at what this groundbreaking ballet will be like and some of the core ideas woven throughout the music and the movement.

When did you first discover the music of Fleetwood Mac?

I was five years old I think, and I was sitting in my dad’s car. I remember we were driving down Cross Bay Boulevard and “Dreams” came on the radio. I’ve always associated this particular song with a large portion of my childhood.

Many of the songs you are drawing from for this ballet are either from the Rumours album or the Tusk album. How do the two compare and contrast?

They are certainly contrasted as albums as far as songwriting is concerned. With Rumours there was more of a band effort, while Tusk was predominantly spearheaded by Lindsey Buckingham.
Lindsey Buckingham spoke a lot about the difference in approach to Tusk, and how Fleetwood Mac didn’t want to replicate Rumours. They wanted to start taking risks as far as songwriting style was concerned, so a lot of the song arrangements are more experimental and sparser than they were in Rumours. There’s less of a band effort, especially as far as harmonies are concerned. There were a ton of harmonies all over Rumours, whereas Tusk seems to be the effort of three distinct songwriting voices.
While both albums are about romantic fallout, Rumours approaches it from a very pop-y and hopeful place, while Tusk is moving more into grief, and even insanity. Their music goes from tracks like “Go Your Own Way,” which were hopeful and optimistic, to tracks like “What Makes You Thing You’re the One,” where instead of smiling and waving goodbye at your ex-partner, you are screaming at them.

What are the core themes of this ballet?

The themes in the ballet match the themes in the music, and the themes in the ballet especially match the history of the band.
There was a lot of sex and a lot of drugs involved in the band’s history. There’s no outward expression of either of those things in the ballet, but there is a hedonistic undertone and sexual tension between all of the dancers that are on stage.
The ballet is about an entity that has to work together to achieve an artistic endeavor. A lot of art inherently is a reflection of yourself in order to relate to other people. As a result it’s unfortunately very difficult to find the line between what drives you creatively and what fuels you relationally and romantically in your everyday life, without there being too much bleed between the two. If there is too much bleed, things go wrong and relationships crumble. The ballet is about what happens next. How do you redefine your relationship with someone when the romance crumbles and you still have to be a part of this artistic group?

Would you say that the ballet is loosely biographical of the band members of Fleetwood Mac?

It is very loosely biographical. I would say certain dancers represent certain band members, but then there are dancers that also represent specific aspects of those same band members. For example, Madeline Bay is inspired by Stevie Nicks, while Anissa Bailis represents the Rhiannon character.
Stevie Nicks used to dress up as Rhiannon for certain shows – it was a persona that she would put forth on stage. It’s interesting to see two dancers representing two sides of one person.
The same with Justin Hughes – it just works out that he is a massive guy, as is Mick Fleetwood. We even used to call Justin “Big Daddy,” and during Fleetwood Mac’s recording process, everyone would refer to Mick Fleetwood as “Big Daddy.”
John Frazer is indicative of the Lindsey Buckingham character. John and Christine McVie, whose eight-year marriage ended shortly before recording Rumours, are loosely represented by Shane Horan and Ethan Schweitzer-Gaslin.
So yes, it is definitely, 100% inspired by the relationships in the band, but I don’t want it to be seen as a concrete representation of them as people.

Consistently you have described this production as being a “self-aware” piece – what does that mean?

In most of my productions I like there to be at least a shred of self-awareness and a breaking of the fourth wall. I like to suggest that a lot of the ballets I create actually exist in the same universe, and there are often times where I allude to previous ballets I have created.
With this production, there is much more of a self-awareness than I normally use, in that it is a production about a production – the dancers on stage are representative of dancers on stage. They are not ideas or snowflakes… simply human beings. Human beings almost trapped in this production. There is a moment in the ballet where that sensation of being trapped comes full frontal. And at the end… I’m not actually going to tell you about the end.

What is a favorite moment in this ballet?

One is “Tusk” – it’s the funnest song to choreograph to. Fleetwood Mac actually recorded it with a marching band in a baseball stadium. The track is so out there, and so I want the dance to be out there with it. The dancers are going to represent this deranged marching band that spends way too much time with one another – the dancers will have been on stage together for about 25 grueling minutes at that point.

What do you want your audience members to walk away thinking or feeling?

I want to keep the shoes empty so the audience can put themselves in it. I want to challenge myself and the audience to ask the question, “where is the line between art and reality?” I want them to not know what is part of the performance and what is part of the reality of the dancers. I want them to wonder where the bleed begins and ends.

Buy tickets for the Fleetwood Mac Collection here.

BIA Announces New Session of 8-week Adult Intro Ballet Workshop

Tuesdays March 13 – May 1 at 6:30 PM – 7:45 PM

Just $120 for this 8-week program.

Call Morgan, 208.343.0556 × 232 or email for more details and to register.

More dates for future workshops to be announced.

Ballet Idaho Announces New Work to Fleetwood Mac Music

Contact: Meredith Stead, Marketing Director
Ballet Idaho
208.343.0556 ext. 222,

Boise, ID – Ballet Idaho announced their February repertory will include a new ballet to the music of Fleetwood Mac and choreography by company dancer Daniel Ojeda. The new work will have its world premiere as part of the three-ballet program, Fleetwood Mac Collection, at the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts on Friday, February 9 and Saturday, February 10, 2018.

The currently untitled Fleetwood Mac ballet joins two other ballets on the program. Agon, a collaboration between the composer Igor Stravinsky and the choreographer George Balanchine was new 60 years ago on Dec. 1 of this year. The New York Times has said of the ballet, “The combination of formality and intimacy has a charge both erotic and strenuous.”

Also on the Fleetwood Mac Collection program is Raymonda’s Wedding, with choreography by Ballet Idaho artistic director Peter Anastos, after Petipa and Nureyev.
Individual performance tickets for Fleetwood Mac Collection are on sale November 29, 2017 through or the Velma V. Morrison Center box office for $38-$58.

Since 1972, Ballet Idaho has enriched lives through classical ballet and served as a dynamic reflection of the Boise community. Led by Artistic Director Peter Anastos, Ballet Idaho is the only professional ballet company and academy in the state of Idaho, bringing together the highest level of dance excellence with a commitment to education and training. For more information, visit

  1. # # # (((Editors: Photo and interview opportunities with dancers and the Artistic Director are available. We would be happy to help in making this a feature story for your publication.)))
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November Academy Discounts

It’s never too late to enroll in the Academy!

This month we’d like to offer $50 off enrollment in the following classes:

  • Pre-Ballet 2 Tuesdays 6:00 – 6:45 or Wednesdays 4:30 – 5:15 (ages 4 -6)
  • Child Sampler (Tap and Ballet combined) Tuesdays 5:15 – 6:00 (ages 4 -7)
  • Beginning/ Intermediate Home School Ballet Monday 2:30
  • Youth Hip Hop Thursdays 7:00 -8:00 (ages 8 -12)

Free trial classes are available.

John Frazer returns as company dancer for the 2017/18 season.

Interview with returning company member, John Frazer.

Ballet Idaho: You were a company member from 2010 to 2015. What have you been up to the last two years and what brought you back to Ballet Idaho?
John Frazer: In the two years that I’ve been away, I danced with Ballet San Antonio as well as several independent shows. I was offered the role of “Hook” for Peter Anastos’ Peter Pan this past spring and was very excited to be given a full time spot with the company.

BI: What is something that might surprise our audience about your job as a ballet dancer?
JF: Well we wish each other the best by swearing in French. (A dancer’s traditional “good luck wish” is the French word merde.)

BI: What are you most looking forward to this season?
JF: I’m most looking forward to working with all my friends and the Idaho dancers again!

BI: You are one of the featured choreographers for NewDance fall, how did you first begin as a choreographer?
JF: I first really started thinking about choreography when I was at Ballet West and they started their now annual “Innovations” program. It is similar to Ballet Idaho’s NewDance but I didn’t actually have my first attempt until several years ago with Boise Dance Co-op.

We look forward to seeing John on stage for the 2017/18 season!

We are hiring a Marketing Assistant!

The full time position of Marketing Assistant supports the Marketing Director in website management, marketing design elements, and ticketing.

General responsibilities include:
- Maintain by updating imagery and copy
- Assist with design creation and manipulation
- Ticketing management for in-house performances and events
- Manage patron relations and season ticket requests
- Answer the general phone in the marketing and ticketing department
- Design monthly e-newsletter, including writing content, image selection and proofing
- Periodically assists with manning the front desk to interact with Ballet Idaho Academy students and parents
- Oversight and troubleshooting ticketing at events
- Event support- attend every special event, Academy event, and company performance to assist with ticketing and other tasks as needed
- Maintain and utilize branding standards in all communication
- Keep common office areas tidy and organized
- Assist Marketing Director with the performance of her duties

Specific ticketing duties include:
- Assist in producing various order forms for ticket specials
- Accept, review for accuracy, and process orders in SalesForce
- Answer questions from renewing and new subscribers
- Monitor who has not renewed and follow up with a phone call
- For new subscribers – prepare Thank You notes and brief outline of when to expect Season Tickets in the mail
- Monitor the Season Subscription List in SalesForce and amend as necessary for tracking purposes
- In late July, seating charts
o Create Morrison Center seating chart for all performances based on subscriber seat preferences
o Reconcile tickets with subscriber list
- In late August, prepare season ticket mailing to include
o Executive Director letter thanking them and with general instructions (donate tickets back if unused)
o parking pass if purchased or Silver Circle donor
o parking maps
o all tickets
- Accommodate subscribers who purchase or change seats after seating chart is generated
- Gift Certificates: generate, process redemptions, communicate with guest and MC
- Know which ticket specials are running and how they work
- Groupon/Living Social/Amazon: process orders, follow up with guests, distribute tickets in-office or at MC
- Comp tickets: arrange dancer, board member, staff comps and any other upon request of Marketing Director. Adhere to deadline of Monday prior to performance.

Personality: Extreme attention to detail, and self-driven with a positive outlook. A natural forward planner who is mature, credible, and comfortable in dealing with donors, sponsors and board members. Reliable and determined. Empathic communicator, able to see things from the other person’s point of view. Well presented, groomed, and businesslike. Flexible to work the occasional odd and long hours leading up to and at events and performances.

Specific Job Skills: Strong verbal and written communication skills. Must be an excellent face-to-face and telephone communicator. Appreciates need for consistency within company’s branding and marketing mix, especially PR and the Internet.

Computer skills: Must be adept in use Adobe Design CS6 (Photoshop, InDesign), Microsoft Excel and experience in website maintenance and upkeep.

Ideal background would be Public Relations, Marketing or Communications recent grad or entry level. Salary is $25,000/year.

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