South Carolina's Largest Performing Arts Company

About Us

Columbia City Ballet – An Introduction

Columbia City Ballet offers Southeastern audiences the highest quality ballet and provides dancers with some of the finest professional dance training

Artistic & Executive Director William Starrett has transformed it into a professional company with 30 paid dancers and more than 2,000 season members. Under the leadership of Starrett, Columbia City Ballet produces what critics have described as “some of the highest quality cultural entertainment in the Southeast.” The Ballet attracts not only audiences from all over the region that are eager to attend performances, but also quality dancers from all over the country and the world eager to be a part of such an accomplished ballet company. South Carolina can proudly claim one of the strongest and most versatile ballet companies in the region and in the country.

Since Columbia City Ballet’s founding in 1961, it has integrated the world of dance within the lives of Columbians. In that era, the Ballet was a community dance group staging only two performances a year. Columbia City Ballet has increased its total number of major performances to more than 80 per year, reaching more than 51,000 people in a season. In its 55th season, the Ballet will travel to 15 cities in three states and will present 18 full-length performances at the Koger Center.


Columbia City Ballet’s mission is to be a premier professional ballet company in the Southeast through the presentation of our art and expression to a constantly growing and diverse audience. Central to this mission are the following:

  • Having and growing a repertoire of the highest quality dance, including traditional works by the legendary masters and new works by current, vibrant choreographers;
  • Attracting, training and retaining a company of highly accomplished dancers;
  • Maintaining a regular schedule of performances in the region and touring opportunities throughout the nation;
  • Providing educational opportunities to regional companies through lectures, demonstration, open rehearsals and school performances.

Full-Length Productions
Narrated Ballets for Children
One-Act Ballets