The Media City Ballet Company, now known as Pacific Ballet Dance Theatre, formally announced its formation on September 30, 2001. Since then it has experienced remarkable growth and has become one of the major ballet companies in the Southern California area.
While its beginnings may have been humble, its lineage is impressive. Company founder and Artistic Director, Natasha Middleton, continues a family tradition in the arts. Her grandmother, Elenna Wortova, danced with the original Ballet Russe. Her father, Andrei Tremaine, was a principal dancer with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and the Ballet Nacional de México. In addition, he was the Artistic Director of the Pacific Ballet Theatre. Throughout his career, he has coached numerous ballet stars such as Cynthia Gregory and Charles Maple. Her mother, Natalie Garrotto, was an opera singer with the San Francisco Opera.
Ms. Middleton was a principal dancer with the Pacific Ballet Theatre and also performed with the Joffrey II in New York City. She has been teaching ballet for over twenty years and is the owner of the Media Dance Arts Center in Burbank.
Over the last seven years, Pacific Ballet Dance Theatre has attracted first-class talent from around the world, including Armenia, Asia, Russia, and Spain. PBDT dancers have previously worked with such companies as ABT, Armenian National Opera Ballet, the Bolshoi Theatre Ballet, the Kirov Opera and Ballet Company, the Korean National Ballet, and the Chicago Ballet. In addition, PBDT has worked with and developed many talented local dancers.
PBDT produces three major performances a year, including The Nutcracker. Most recently, as Media City Ballet, the ballet has produced the popular summer special, Aram Khachaturian’s Ballets and the Tributes to the Ballet Russe. The company also puts on several smaller performances, has an active educational outreach program, and sponsors the Pacific Ballet Dance Theatre Youth Company.
Coupled with its artistic growth, PBDT has developed a solid financial base to fund the company. By combining robust ticket sales, a variety of grants, and a strong sponsorship program, Pacific Ballet Dance Theatre has secured itself a spot in the artistic community for many years to come.