Dayton Ballet Appoints Brandon Ragland as Artistic Director

A headshot of Brandon Ragland, Artistic Director of Dayton Ballet.
Photo by Kateryna Sellers.

The Dayton Performing Arts Alliance (DPAA) has selected Brandon Ragland as Dayton Ballet’s Artistic Director, following an executive search process led by Arts Consulting Group (ACG). He began his tenure on August 1, 2023.

Ragland, a seasoned ballet professional with over 15 years of experience, joins Dayton from the esteemed Louisville Ballet. During his tenure there, he excelled as a principal dancer, skillfully managed the Louisville Ballet School's pre-professional program, and contributed his creative prowess as a resident choreographer. Renowned for his exceptional choreography, Ragland began his ballet journey at the Alabama School of Fine Arts. He embarked on a remarkable career, first joining the Alabama Ballet and later ascending to the position of principal dancer at the Louisville Ballet. As the resident choreographer for the Louisville Ballet Youth Ensemble, Ragland showcased his creative genius through captivating productions, including the one-act ballet "Cinderella's Ball," specially crafted for the Louisville Ballet School.

In addition to his artistic contributions, Ragland managed the Pre-Professional Program Manager for the Louisville Ballet School, nurturing emerging talent and shaping future dance professionals. His commitment to community engagement extends, as he actively participates in esteemed initiatives such as the Roots and Wings Project and the Kentucky Center's ArtReach Program. Notably, Ragland earned himself the opportunity to perform with the Black Iris Project at the renowned Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., as part of their prestigious Dance Across America program. Ragland has also received The Lift a Life Foundation Emerging Leader in the Arts Award. He received a bachelor of science in dance-arts administration from Butler University.

In making the announcement, President and CEO of DPAA Patrick Nugent said, “It is my pleasure to announce Brandon Ragland as the next Artistic Director for Dayton Ballet. Brandon brings an immense amount of talent and experience to the Ballet and the Ballet School. With his experience and gifts, he will lead the Dayton Ballet to great heights. His experience with and commitment to teaching and mentoring dance students, from beginners to pre-professionals, will be invaluable to continuing the growth of Dayton Ballet School. Additionally, Brandon will be a valuable addition to DPAA’s Artistic Leadership Team. We could not be happier with the Committee’s recommendation.”

“I am thrilled to join the Artistic team of DPAA as the Artistic Director of Dayton Ballet,” said Ragland. “Dayton Ballet has a strong and rich history within the Dayton community and I look forward to building on its foundation and ushering Dayton Ballet into a new era. My passion for this art form, along with my dedication to dance education, will continue to move Dayton Ballet and Dayton Ballet School forward. I am excited about immersing myself in the Dayton arts community and building relationships with other arts organizations.”

“Congratulations to Brandon and the DPAA on this momentous appointment,” said ACG Vice President Geoff Chang. "Through an extensive international search process that attracted over 100 applicants, ACG, in collaboration with the DPAA staff, search committee, artistic team, and board, presented four exceptional finalists. Ultimately, Brandon's unparalleled artistic excellence emerged as the clear choice."

August 2023

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