Susan Jaffe

Ballet, Pointe, Variations

Susan Jaffe newly appointed Ballet Mistress of American Ballet Theater was declared by the New York Times as “America’s Quintessential American Ballerina” Susan Jaffe danced as a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre for 20 years. Prominent in the international dance scene as well, her European engagements included performances with The Royal Ballet, The Kirov Ballet, The Stuttgart Ballet, The Munich State Opera Ballet, La Scala Ballet in Milan, The Vienna State Opera Ballet, The Royal Danish Ballet, The Royal Swedish Ballet, and The English National Ballet.

Ms. Jaffe’s versatility as a dancer allowed her to tackle a large range of choreographic works. This not only included her acclaimed interpretations of the classics like Swan Lake but also the dramatic works of John Cranko, Anthony Tudor, Agnes DeMille and Kenneth MacMillian. She also worked with and danced the works of many prominent choreographers such as Jiri Kylian, Twyla Tharp, George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Lar Lubovitch, Nacho Duato and Roland, Petit, David Parsons, Mark Morris, Merce Cunninham, Ronald Hynde, Frederick Ashton, Ulysses Dove and Lynn Taylor Corbitt.

In 2003, one year after her retirement from the stage, Ms. Jaffe co-founded the Princeton Dance & Theatre Studio in Princeton, New Jersey where she enjoys passing on the wealth of her knowledge to her dance students. Along with teaching for American Ballet Theatre and giving corporate lectures for Duke Corporate Education, Ms. Jaffe has expanded into choreography. Her choreographic achievements to date include “The Nutcracker” “Pop Sonata” “Velez Pas de Deux” “Sleeping Beauty Act lll” “Raymonda Divertessments” “Novem Pas de Deux” “Ballet Studies”, “Tarantella”, and the “Cancan.” She also wrote a children’s book, “Becoming a Ballerina” for children ages 7-13.