Eliot Feld and Ballet Tech Donate Archive to New York Public Library
June 14, 2024

One hundred and forty-nine dances by Eliot Feld, founder and former artistic director and president of Ballet Tech, are being entered into the public domain. Additionally, together with Ballet Tech, New York City’s Public School for Dance, Feld has also donated archival materials to the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts (the Jerome Robbins Dance Division), where the archive will be accessible to artists, researchers, and generations of dance lovers. 

Eliot Feld. Photo by Bruce Weber, circa 2004, courtesy Ballet Tech.

Feld’s extensive body of work spans more than 50 years of his choreographic career (1967–2018) and includes ballets created for esteemed companies, such as American Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, Boston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, and New York City Ballet, among others. 

Of his decision to put so many of his ballets in the public domain, Feld said in a press release: “It seemed like the right thing to do.” Currently, 71 of the 149 dances are in the public domain, and 67 will be added by July 5, 2042. The remaining 11 ballets—choreographed on Ballet Tech students for young dancers—are now controlled by the Ballet Tech Foundation. 

“We’re so honored to receive Eliot Feld’s archive to make it accessible to the general public,” said Linda Murray, the Anne H. Bass Curator of the Jerome Robbins Dance Division, in a press release. “Feld is a spectacular choreographer, who not only has changed the face of ballet and dance today, but has introduced generations and generations of young performers to the world of dance through his innovative dance school. We are proud to steward his archive for these future dancers.” 

Dancer Marcus Felix lifts Eliot Feld. Photo by David Lindner (1985) courtesy Ballet Tech.

This new acquisition places Feld and Ballet Tech among dance icons, including Merce Cunningham, Martha Graham, and Jerome Robbins.

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