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Our History

The early days

       In 1973, several dancers came together because they shared an important common bond — their love of dance. The newly formed alliance made a commitment to respect distinct dance traditions by giving each artist the freedom to pursue her chosen idiom. Founding members included Ann Dunn, the company’s first Artistic Director, who was soon joined by Bonnie Boilini Baxter and Jill Engel Tulchinsky. Their vision guided the young company throughout its early years. Performances and classes were held at Dancenter, a 100-year-old church converted to dance studios and theater space. SDT remained there until 1981 when the company moved temporarily to Center Century before relocating to its current home at the Colfax Cultural Arts Center, a cooperative arts and neighborhood complex with national historic site status.

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of important milestones


An alliance of dancers is formed under the leadership of Ann Dunn, the group’s first Artistic Director.


Articles of Incorporation are established under the name of Southold Dance Theater; first Board of Directors is formed


Non-profit 501 (c) (3) status received


SDT launches a touring program of elementary schools in northern Indiana


An apprentice company is formed as a training program for future company members, the precursor of today’s company. A volunteer support group is formed Southold Dance League


First classical production of The Nutcracker Ballet
1st Annual Holiday Walk Tour of Homes


SDT names Bonnie Boilini Baxter as Artistic Director
Introduction of the Youth Concerts program for area schools


Jill Engel Tulchinsky becomes Ballet Mistress for the company


SDT moves in as the anchor tenant for the newly renovated Colfax Cultural Center developed by the South Bend Heritage Foundation


SDT adds musical accompaniment by the South Bend Symphony Orchestra to The Nutcracker Ballet


Nutcracker Nostalgia, SDT’s annual Patron Gala, begins


JoAnn McCarthy Barkes takes on the role of Ballet Mistress for the company


SDT Adult Ensemble reintroduces school touring program with Peter and the Wolf


South Bend Tribune becomes principal sponsor of The Nutcracker Ballet. SDT Board of Directors establishes an endowment fund.


SDT introduces the Family Concert in appreciation of widespread community support


SDT Board creates the first strategic plan for the organization, adopts a new mission statement Creation of Marijke Niles Artist Fund, an endowment for the support of outstanding artists


Debut of new sets commissioned for The Nutcracker Ballet


Bonnie Boilini Baxter and JoAnn McCarthy Barkes share artistic leadership as co-directors. Exploring Dance Outreach program begins in cooperation with Charles Martin Youth Center


SDT completes challenge grant from the Brenay Philanthropic Fund to begin an organizational endowment fund at the Community Foundation of St. Joseph Co.


SDT’s Board of Directors acquires Southold Dancenter, the school that had served Southold Dance Theater, continuing the long-range strategic plan for the organization. The school is now called The School of Southold Dance Theater. Patrick Hinson is hired as the Director of Ballet while Bonnie Boilini Baxter assumes the position of Director for the organization. Southold moves back into the newly renovated Morris Performing Arts Center and is named the resident dance company.


Marcus Galante named Southold’s Artistic Director.

Malana Maher named Southold’s Executive Director.


Kimmary Williams and Jacob Rice named Co-Artistic Directors


Alexei Kremnev named Artistic Director, Anna Reznik named Artistic Associate


Erica Fischbach named Artistic Director


Calin Radulescu named Interim Artistic Director


Calin Radulescu named Artistic Director

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