Most of us have already heard (and were somewhat shocked by) the news that Christopher Wheeldon has decided to leave Morphoses, the company he founded three years ago. And most of us were wondering how or if the company was going to go on without his name attached. Today, Lourdes Lopez, Morphoses’ co-founder and executive director, announced a new plan for the company: to have resident artists curate programming on a seasonal basis.

Here is more from the press release:

“Morphoses will adopt a curatorial model in which the company will invite artists from various disciplines to take on the role of resident artist for one season, leading the company’s artistic vision for that year,” said Ms. Lopez.

The embrace of a curatorial model is a natural evolution and expansion of the company’s mission and vision.  To date, more than half of the company’s repertory is comprised of works by a diverse group of emerging and well-known choreographers that include Michael Clark, William Forsythe, Tim Harbour, Adam Hougland, Lightfoot León, Edwaard Liang, Pontus Lidberg, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Liv Lorent, Emily Molnar, Alexei Ratmansky, as well as Frederick Ashton, George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins; the balance of the works were created by Christopher Wheeldon.

Morphoses has become a robust platform for some of the most talented choreographers in contemporary ballet, enabling them to create work with a versatile company of dancers.  Collaborators have included such artists as Los Carpinteros, Francisco Costa, Hugo Dalton, Narciso Rodriguez, Joby Talbot, Isabel and Ruben Toledo, and Martha Wainwright.

“Christopher’s artistic vision and talent has helped make Morphoses one of today’s most important dance companies,” said Ms. Lopez.

By adopting this curatorial model, the company will afford artists the opportunity to use Morphoses as a stage to forge dynamic creative partnerships that will produce innovative works for the dance world. This model will enhance the company’s capacity to reach out to a larger, broader audience and engage a younger generation.  The company has begun the process of identifying the roster of resident artists for the upcoming seasons and will be announcing plans in the near future.

“In addition to its artistic achievements, Morphoses has established a successful business model and self-sustaining administrative structure that allows the company’s resources to be focused on its artistic goals, bringing forward a new generation of talent to younger audiences,” added Ms. Lopez.  Since its founding, Morphoses has achieved artistic and financial success through annual seasons in New York and London, domestic and international touring, and private and institutional support.

“The company has built up a reserve of funds to support the curatorial model,” stated Catherine Gildor, a member of the board of Morphoses. “We see this as validation of the crucial role that Morphoses has taken on in the world of contemporary ballet and are therefore committed to building upon our success.”

Morphoses’ mission is to broaden the scope of classical ballet by emphasizing innovation and fostering creativity through collaboration.

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