About Ballet of the Dolls

“Ballet of the Dolls “… is an attitude, a thrashing of conventional good taste, a Busby Berkeley on speed. It’s defiantly anti-high art, dance on its worst behavior, almost daring you to get dirty.”
- Mike Steele, Minneapolis Star Tribune



Ballet of the Dolls was established in 1986 by esteemed choreographer Myron Johnson. Providing the Twin Cities with its first year-round dance-theater program, the company immediately filled a unique niche in the arts community, offering intimate and innovative professional dance-theater performances that appeal to a diverse range of audiences. Advertised solely by word of mouth, several thousand people attended the first season consisting of five original full-length shows, making the Dolls a permanent fixture in the Twin Cities arts community. Ballet of the Dolls continues to push boundaries with its mission to fearlessly create challenging and surprising performance work that brings a sense of discovery to artists and audiences alike. Along with this, they continue their commitment to operating education and outreach programs, and by programming and managing the newly renovated Ritz Theater in Northeast Minneapolis.

Unlike many professional theater or dance troupes, the Dolls are hands on; often times assisting with and/or sewing most of their own costumes (designed by Grant Whittaker who is also a Doll), assisting with creating/scavenging for set pieces and offering their talent to production in any way they can. When you see a Ballet of the Dolls show, you are witnessing a true group effort by an incredibly talented, dedicated and engaged group of artists. This unique take on performance along with the Dolls owning their own space at the Ritz Theater allows for a very open and flexible canvas. Once the set has been struck for one performance, you can immediately see sketches begin for the next, all led by Myron Johnson’s incredible artistic direction.

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