Dancing into the Future: A White Paper from Ballet Memphis

Founder & Artistic Director of Ballet Memphis

Dorothy Gunther Pugh

Former President & CEO of NAS

Russell Willis Taylor

Ballet Memphis, a nationally acclaimed regional dance company, is facing all of the challenges endemic to the not-for-profit arts: rising costs, decreasing audiences, more competition for philanthropic dollars, and how to create work of real value to audiences locally and beyond. The leadership of Ballet Memphis chose to stop and take a candid look at how the changing environment and the market for dance indicated that the current financial challenges are not simply a down-turn by-product, but are indicators of a systemic change that demands a new strategy if dance companies are to survive and add value to the communities they serve. With the support of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, “Dancing into the Future: A White Paper from Ballet Memphis” was jointly authored by Dorothy Gunther Pugh, Founder and CEO of Ballet Memphis and Russell Willis Taylor, President and CEO of National Arts Strategies. It outlines the learning from the first phase of Ballet Memphis’ reinvention.

Read the paper, “Dancing into the Future: A White Paper from Ballet Memphis”