About Allegra Kent

New York, New York

Allegra Kent (CBA ’19), ballerina and muse of George Balanchine and Joseph Cornell, started studying ballet at 11 with Bronislava Nijinska and Carmelita Maracci. In 1952, Balanchine invited her to New York City Ballet, where she danced for the next 30 years. Her Balanchine roles included the breathtaking airborne figure in “The Unanswered Question” section of Ivesiana. Balanchine created Bugaku for her and Edward Villella, and revived The Seven Deadly Sins and La Sonnambula for her. She also danced leading roles in Apollo, Concerto Barocco, Agon, Scotch Symphony, and Symphony in C, among many others. Jerome Robbins created roles for her in Dances at a Gathering and Dumbarton Oaks, and he cast her in other ballets, including his Afternoon of a Faun and The Concert. Currently a teacher at Barnard College, Allegra is the author of several critically acclaimed books, including her autobiography, Once a Dancer. . . and her first book for children, Ballerina Swan. She is the recipient of a Dance Magazine Award, and she has written for DanceVogue, and other publications. She lives in New York City.

The Director’s Fellowship gives a CBA residency to artists, scholars, and practitioners who have made significant contributions to the field of ballet. The fellowship will be given at the discretion of CBA’s founder and director, Jennifer Homans.

Director’s Fellows will receive access to CBA’s studio and office spaces, NYU’s academic resources, and a stipend to pursue projects of the fellow’s own imagining. While in residence, Director’s Fellows will share their perspective and expertise to further deepen the artistic and scholarly work emerging from CBA.


Allegra Kent and Edward Villella in George Balanchine's Bugaku.
Allegra Kent and Edward Villella in George Balanchine's Bugaku.