Artist Spotlight: JoAnna Schmidt

Insights on "PBT Premieres"




Your Go-to Relaxation Activity: Sleeping

Non-dance Hobbies: "I like to cook, play piano/ukulele, go for walks, read, travel, listen to live music whenever possible, and spend too much money on tiny, delectable cocktails."

Family: "I have my mom, dad, older brother and older sister."

Pets: "A whippet named Laika."

"PBT Premieres" in the News

3 Masterworks, 1 Weekend Only

March 6-8, 2015 - Benedum Center

Students Join the Pros on the Main-stage

Outside PBT’s largest studio, clusters of PBT School students often gather between classes to peer into company rehearsals for a dose of daily inspiration. But at least once each season, these young dancers temporarily step into the world of their role models for The Nutcracker, a production that has initiated generations of ballet dancers into the world of professional performance.

Artist Spotlight: Alejandro Diaz

The Man Behind the Mask


Behind the flowing fur and powerful jaws, PBT Soloist Alejandro Diaz has found empathy and understanding for the misunderstood hero he'll portray in PBT's brand-new fairy tale: Beauty and the Beast. Here, Alejandro shares his secrets to humanizing the man beneath the intimidating exterior.

En Pointe for The Nutcracker

Caitlin Peabody Preps Rotating Cast of Pointe Shoes

This Nutcracker season, Corps de Ballet dancer Caitlin Peabody will take the stage for 24 performances, perform 13 roles and dance through at least seven pairs of pointe shoes. Whether it's a hard toe for Sugarplum or a soft fit for snowflakes, Caitlin customizes her shoes to fit the choreography of the characters that she'll portray.

“Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood Visits Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre on Dec. 17, Program

Popular PBS Program Heads behind the Scenes of “The Nutcracker” with Principal Alexandra Kochis

PBS’ hit children’s program Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood will head behind the scenes of Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre’s The Nutcracker on its Dec. 17, episode, following Principal Dancer Alexandra Kochis as she prepares to dance the role of the Sugarplum Fairy. The segment airs locally on WQED at 9 a.m. Dec. 17.

Artist Spotlight: Alexandra Kochis

Nutcracker Reflections

By PBT Principal Alexandra Kochis

The holidays are a time of ritual and tradition for all of us and, as dancers, performing The Nutcracker is not an exception to that rule but rather a personification of it, I would say.

PBT Soloists Ranked on Pointe Magazine’s Top 10 Standout Performances of 2014

Gabrielle Thurlow & Luca Sbrizzi to Co-Star on “The Nutcracker” Opening Night

Pointe Magazine has ranked Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre soloists Gabrielle Thurlow and Luca Sbrizzi on its Top 10 Standout Performances of 2014 for their exuberant dancing in PBT’s April production of “Don Quixote.”

Artist Spotlight: Olivia Kelly

Olivia's Top 5 Reasons to See "The Nutcracker"


Top-played song on your IPod right now? Hozier – Someone New

I started dancing at age… 10

Family: “I am an only child. However my dog, Lilly, is considered a sibling just as much as I am.”

Hometown: “Cincinnati. But my parents live in Arizona right now.”

Recipe: Caitlin Peabody's Thanksgiving Favorite

For Corps de Ballet dancer Caitlin Peabody, the perfect Thanksgiving blurs the line between holidays. "The parade is on from start to finish," she said, adding that she'll accompany it with coffee and maybe even a mimosa in the morning. The traditional day also includes an obligatory viewing of The Miracle on 31st Street.