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Release: Edwaard Liang Accepts Artistic Director Position with The Washington Ballet

Edwaard Liang Accepts Artistic Director Position with The Washington Ballet

Liang to complete 2023/2024 season with BalletMet

(Columbus, OH) – After 11 years as the Artistic Director for BalletMet, Edwaard Liang has accepted an offer as the Artistic Director for The Washington Ballet. Liang will continue serving as the BalletMet Artistic Director through the end of the 2023/2024 season.

“Edwaard is incredibly deserving of this new opportunity. I am so excited for him but, of course, sad that at the end of this season he won’t be part of our daily lives. I am proud to have helped lead the search process that brought Edwaard to Columbus and could not be more proud of the work the Board and the BalletMet team have done to support Edwaard’s Artistic Vision over the last 11 seasons. Edwaard is a very special artist and leader who has made BalletMet a better organization. We are in a strong place to recruit our next Artistic Director,” said Sue Porter, Executive Director of BalletMet. “We are excited for what the future holds and BalletMet will immediately start an international search for our next Artistic Director led by former Board Chair Susan Douglass. Our goal is to have that talent in place by next summer.”

With Liang’s leadership, BalletMet adopted a vision to create and foster world class art and artists to inspire Columbus and beyond. Over the last two weekends, record audiences came out to see BalletMet’s season premiere On Stage; and they could see that this vision has become a reality.

“We plan to spend the rest of the season celebrating Edwaard’s legacy and working together to continue to build our bright future,” Porter said.

The Washington Ballet has a 75-year history of bringing classical and contemporary ballet to the Washington D.C. community, often performing at the Kennedy Center. Liang becomes only the fourth Artistic Director in TWB’s history, stepping into a position currently filled by Acting Artistic Director Trinidad Vives. He succeeds Artistic Directors Julie Kent (2016– 2023); Septime Webre (1999–2016); and Mary Day (1967–1999), who founded TWB as a ballet school in 1944 and established it as a professional company in 1976.



Renowned for its versatility and innovative repertory, BalletMet ranks among the nation’s 20 largest ballet companies.

Since its inception in 1978, BalletMet has made the commission and performance of new works a core organizational priority, with more than 200 World Premieres and hundreds of Company Premieres performed throughout its history. BalletMet stages 40 to 50 performances each year at home and on tour. In the past, the company toured 28 U.S. states and internationally to Russia, Poland, Egypt, Spain and Canada.

BalletMet’s Academy has also been recognized as an institution of local and national stature. It offers hundreds of classes to roughly 1,000 students, ages 3 to 95, each year. Students in its Intensive, Boys and Trainee Programs gain invaluable training and experience, including the opportunity to dance on stage alongside the Company’s professional dancers.

BalletMet’s dance access and education programs serve nearly 30,000 people annually. There are a variety of opportunities to experience and learn the art of dance including free classes, complimentary tickets and student scholarships. BalletMet offers more than 60 scholarships each year to talented youth, many from underserved groups, who could not otherwise participate in dance training.
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View the accompanying letter from Board Chair Herb Bresler, Artistic Director Edwaard Liang, and Executive Director Sue Porter here.
View full press release from the Washington Ballet here.