Madison Ballet: Names artistic director from NY

MADISON, WIS. (March 21, 2022)—Madison Ballet announced today that Ja’ Malik, a nationally known  dancer and choreographer based in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood, will join the organization full time as artistic director in July. 

He is currently in Madison choreographing part of “Turning Pointe,” Madison Ballet’s coming  performance at the Overture Center March 25 to April 3. 

Ja’ Malik, an advocate for artists of color, brings to Madison his exceptional and diverse experience as  dancer and choreographer. He is director and founder of the all-male Ballet Boy Productions. He worked  with Tony-nominated Camille A. Brown on The Public Theater’s 2019 production of Ntozake  Shange’s, “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide/When The Rainbow is Enuf”. In 2003 he  graduated from the first class of Joffrey Ballet School, and New School University, BFA program.   

“Madison Ballet offers a national platform for me to share my vision to create a company that reflects  the diverse world we live in,” Ja’ Malik said. 

Jonathan Solari, chief executive officer of Madison Ballet, said he urges Madison residents to  attend Turning Pointe as a show of support for the new artistic director. 

“As an arts organization, Madison Ballet helps define beauty through the art we present on this  community’s stages. We take that role seriously and recognize our obligation to challenge what ballet is  and who it is for,” said Solari. “Ja’ Malik’s clear and energizing vision will honor our 40-year history while  bringing progress to this organization, this city, and this art form. It is apt that he is making his debut  during Turning Pointe.” 

Pamela Squires of The Washington Post said Ja’ Malik is “a choreographer who shows a fine eye.” Roslyn  Sulcas of The New York Times named him a “Choreographer to Watch.” He has been featured  in Dance magazine. 

He is a former member of Cleveland Ballet, Oakland Ballet, North Carolina Dance Theatre, Nathan Trice  Rituals, City Dance Ensemble, Ballet Hispanico, and Philadelphia’s BalletX.

“Turning Pointe” begins this Friday and runs through Sunday, April 3. Tickets are $18 to $32 and for sale  at the Overture Center Ticket Office in person, by mail or online.