The American Ballet Theatre has a new Black leader that’s set to make history.
Since the beginning of time, the world of ballet has been a white-dominated space. Now Janet Rollé is here to not only make history but also serve as proof that we belong in any space.
According to CNN, Rollé will make history as the first Black person to lead the American Ballet Theatre, one of the country’s most prestigious ballet companies
This is a dream come true for Rollé who credits her mother, a Jamaican immigrant, who introduced her to her first dance class at the age of eight, thus setting the tone for what would ultimately become a future career.
“Through dance, I learned how to be a professional, the value of discipline and technique, and my love for the creative process,” said Rollé in an official statement. “These lessons have always been at the core of my professional life and work.”
Previously, Rollé worked as the general manager for Beyoncé’s Parkwood Entertainment for five years where she was credited as an associate producer for the singer’s historic performance as the first Black woman to headline Coachella. She also served as an executive producer for “Black Is King,” the award-winning visual album that accompanied the 2019 live-action remake of “The Lion King.”
She also previously served as Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at CNN Worldwide. In addition, this won’t be her first time making history as she was the first Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer of BET Networks. She’s held positions at AOL, MTV Networks and HBO as well.
Currently, she serves as a board member at BuzzFeed, Inc. and Hallmark Cards, Inc.
“It is, therefore, a singular privilege to be entrusted by the Board to preserve and extend the legacy of American Ballet Theatre, and to ensure its future prosperity, cultural impact, and relevance,” Rollé continued in the statement. “To come full circle and be in a position to give back to the art that has given me so much is a source of unbridled and immense joy.”
Her new position will take effect on Jan. 3, 2022, where Janet Rollé will become the new CEO and executive director of the American Ballet Theatre.