Colorado Ballet Academy hires ballet program director

Colorado Ballet Academy hires ballet program director

Sanya Andersen-Vie - July 9, 2012

DENVER – The Colorado Ballet Academy hired Roberto Muñoz as its new ballet program director.  Muñoz will start at the Academy on September 1.

“Roberto is joining Colorado Ballet Academy’s staff as Ballet Program Director, facilitating the growth of Colorado Ballet’s pre-professional ballet program through highest-quality instruction and international representation,” said Anne O’Connor, Colorado Ballet Academy Director.

About Roberto Muñoz
Born into a family of dancers in Chile, Muñoz started his dance career at an early age.  His parents were pioneers of the dance movement in Chile during the late 1940's and 1950's. With them, he traveled throughout South America and the Caribbean: first with Ballet de Concepción and later with Ballet Municipal de Maracaibo and Ballet de la Universidad del Zulia.

His professional dancing career began in 1972 at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater (PBT), where he worked with several ballet masters including: Nicholas Petrov, Leonid Massine, Edward Caton, Vitale Fokine, Ruth Page, Kenneth Johnson, John Butler, and Frano Jelencic, Anthony Salatino.  He later danced with Ballet Internacional de Caracas and Hartford Ballet.

In 1980, the Venezuelan government appointed Muñoz as the Artistic Director of Ballet del Zulia, where he led the school and the company for two seasons. 

After returning to the U.S., Muñoz continued his teaching career in the Dance Department of Point Park College (now University) as the Director of the Conservatory of Dance and Music.  A faculty member at Point Park College for 13 years, Muñoz taught all levels of ballet technique, character dance and male ballet technique.  Additionally, he created two very successful programs: the Pre-professional Division and the International Summer Dance Program.  During that time, he also served as part-time faculty at the PBT school and company.

Muñoz served as a full-time faculty member at the Baltimore School for the Performing Arts from 1995 to 1997.  In 1997, Muñoz became Ballet Master for the PBT and in 2004, the Pittsburgh Ballet Theater School appointed him director.  He continued his work as Ballet Master for the company and worked as a principal character dancer for the company.

Following his tenure at PBT, Muñoz became Executive Director of The Gulfshore Ballet, in Fort Myers, FL.  He shared his duties with wife Melinda Roy, Artistic Director of Gulfshore Ballet, as full teachers/coaches at all levels of instruction.  He and wife also founded and directed two summer dance intensives: Saratoga Springs Dance Intensive (SSDI) in Saratoga Springs, NY and Vail Valley Dance Intensive (VVDI) in Vail CO.

Muñoz has served as panelist for the Ohio Arts Council and has been a guest teacher at Atlanta Ballet, Annapolis Ballet Theater, Ballet Arizona, Ballet Met, Boston Ballet, Canton Ballet, Colorado Ballet Mary Grove College (Detroit, MI), Houston Ballet, Pro-danza in Havana Cuba, Ballet de Monterrey (Mexico), West Virginia Dance Festival, Nureyev International Dance Competition (Budapest, Hungary) and Jackson International Dance Competition.

He received the Harry Shualb "Award of Excellence" and the Edward Caton award for "Most Influential Teacher."  Some of his most accomplished students won gold and silver medals at the Jackson International Ballet Competition and at the first Nureyev Ballet competition in Budapest, Hungary.

About Colorado Ballet
Established in 1961 by Lillian Covillo and Freidann Parker, Colorado Ballet is a non-profit organization celebrating 52 years of presenting world-class classical ballet and superior dance in Denver.  Under the direction of Artistic Director Gil Boggs, Colorado Ballet presents more than 50 performances annually. Colorado Ballet enhances the cultural life of Colorado through performances of the professional company, training at the Academy, and Education & Outreach programs.


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