Founded in 1969, the New Orleans Ballet Association is the city’s premier dance company. It originally featured local dancers, but then it gradually expanded to its present-day status of booking national and international touring companies.
Over the years NOBA has showcased the talents of some of the leading companies of Russia, Spain, Ireland, Ukraine and other European nations, as well as Japan, Africa and Latin America. Renowned American companies such as the Alvin Ailey Dance Company, the Elisa Monte Dance Company, Parsons Dance Company, MOMIX, Twyla Tharp, and Edward Villella’s Miami City Ballet have also performed there in recent years. France’s famed Joffrey Ballet and Russia’s renowned Bolshoi Ballet have also appeared on the company’s bill at various times.
Offering four to five mainstage performances a year, NOBA attempts to vary its repertoire as widely as possible. In addition to staging classical ballet performances, it also books companies known for folk dancing, jazz, and more modern and innovative urban dance styles. Occasionally individual stars are headlined, like Savion Glover, one of the premiere tap dancers of the present day.
The award-winning company has also become renowned for its vast, innovative teaching network. Thousands of students throughout the Gulf South region have learned their techniques from highly qualified dance instructors working under NOBA’s aegis.