New ballet company seeking dancers, filling gap in Indy arts community

Photo of ballet. (WISH photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Classically trained dancers from across the country traveled to Indianapolis this weekend to audition for positions with a newly formed professional ballet company seeking to continue the legacy of Balanchine technique.

Indianapolis Ballet, headed by visionary dancer and founding artistic director Victoria Lyras, is preparing for its debut season in early 2018.

The company held its first auditions Sunday afternoon at the Indianapolis School of Ballet, founded by Lyras in 2006.

Additional audition dates, including a possible stop in New York, will be announced in the coming weeks, ballet school spokesman John Koluder said.

“To be able to share this passion [for classical ballet] with Indianapolis and to be able to share this with the young dancers who want to learn and grow and embrace the history… is truly a remarkable journey,” Lyras said with tears in her eyes.

Indianapolis Ballet fills a longtime gap in the local arts community, left vacant since Indy’s last professional ballet company closed in 2005.

“This has been my dream since we started the school 11 years ago,” Lyras told 24-Hour News 8. “It took grit to start this company; the same strength and discipline it took to study ballet.”

Community support and generous donations also played a significant role in transforming her years-long vision into reality.

The “Moving Forward Capital Campaign” was announced in May with a year-end goal of raising $1.2 million for Indianapolis Ballet’s launch.

The campaign has already raised more than $300,000, Koluder said Sunday.

“You have to have the community’s support for an [arts endeavor] to succeed,” explained Lyras. “I have faith Indianapolis will continue appreciating the arts.”

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