About The Center

The Center for Ballet and the Arts at New York University (CBA) is an international research institute for scholars and artists of ballet and its related arts and sciences. It exists to inspire new ideas and new ballets, expanding the way we think about the art form’s history, practice, and performance in the 21st century.


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The CBA Fellowship Program invites artists and scholars to The Center to develop self-directed projects that expand the way we think about ballet’s history, practice, and performance. Fellows come from a multitude of disciplines and bring a breadth of experience to the residency. They are not required to be experts in ballet. The fellowship provides time for fellows to do their work and a place to share their expertise and thinking with one another.

CBA’s public programming extends the conversations, work, and ideas emerging at The Center to a wider audience. Our panels, workshops, and lectures are designed to illuminate and expand our understanding of dance. Our goal is to bring together the university and the arts, the mind and the body, the seminar room and the stage.

Founder & Director

Jennifer Homans

“If we could create a place – a major research center – where some of the great minds of our time could come together to focus on dance and its related arts, something new and interesting might happen.”

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© The Al Hirschfeld Foundation. www.AlHirschfeldFoundation.org


Ballet is an ethics and etiquette, a physical and public expression of who we are, with a long past and deep roots in religious, political, and military thinking. It is also inherently contemporary: today’s dancers bring their “street” to the stage. Across its history, dancers and choreographers have articulated a vision of society and civic culture, which was at its origins courtly and aristocratic but in the 20th century became public and democratic. The history of ballet is integral to the history of western civilization.