Michael Scolamiero, Executive Director of Pennsylvania Ballet since 1997, announces he is stepping down and has accepted the position of Executive Director at Miami City Ballet, effective June 30. Pennsylvania Ballet’s Board of Trustees has appointed an Interim Executive Director, David Gray, who will work closely with Mr. Scolamiero for six weeks prior to his departure at the end of June.
“The decision to leave Pennsylvania Ballet was one of the most difficult decisions of my professional career. Aside from the amazing artistry of the Company, Pennsylvania Ballet has offered me the opportunity to hone and improve my administrative and leadership skills, and my partnership with [Artistic Director] Roy Kaiser has been extremely productive and fulfilling,” Scolamiero says. “Nonetheless, I am very excited about the opportunity at Miami City Ballet, and furthermore, I feel strongly that organizations benefit from new leadership. Now that our 50th Anniversary Season is winding down, it seems like an appropriate time for change.”
“Michael has been a very effective Executive Director over these last 17 years, and I am very proud of what we have accomplished together, both artistically and managerially. I wish him the best in the future,” says Louise Reed, Co-Chair of Pennsylvania Ballet’s Board of Trustees. “Michael will be missed by his many friends!”
“It has been a pleasure working Michael these past eight months. As his potential move has unfolded, he has continued to keep his attention and energy focused on the Company,” David Hoffman, Board Co-Chair, says. “He will aid in the transition process to our Interim Executive Director David Gray. I wish Michael the best in Miami. New challenges bring out our best and help us grow. That will be true for Michael in Miami as well as for Pennsylvania Ballet.”
Mr. Scolamiero arrived at Pennsylvania Ballet following a seven-year tenure as Executive Director of the Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia. He immediately set to work stabilizing Pennsylvania Ballet’s finances and setting the organization on a course of artistic growth. Under his leadership, the Company embarked on its first capital campaign in 2002, Raising the Barre, and exceeded a $10 million goal by nearly $2 million. The campaign provided the resources to invest in Pennsylvania Ballet’s first major full-length production in more than 10 years: Swan Lake, choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon. The stunning production, commissioned to celebrate the Company’s 40th Anniversary, proved to be a turning point. Not only did sales exceed all of the Company’s previous box-office results in Philadelphia, the production provided the impetus for Pennsylvania Ballet’s invitation to the Edinburgh International Festival in 2005 and a reinvigorated touring program.
Mr. Scolamiero also played a critical role in creating the Ballet’s endowment, purchasing property on North Broad Street, and leading the campaign to build the Louise Reed Center for Dance. He also recognized how vital it was for the Ballet to have its own school, a goal he and Mr. Kaiser worked relentlessly to achieve for nearly 10 years. The re-establishment of The School of Pennsylvania Ballet is something of which Mr. Scolamiero is most proud.