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Dance Legacy: Celebrating the Life of Ian Horvath

By November 30, 2018January 31st, 2019No Comments

Dance Legacy

Celebrating the Life of Ian Horvath

February 9, 2019 8:00pm

Breen Center for the Performing Arts

Verb Ballets celebrates the life and work of Ian Horvath on February 9, 2019 in an evening titled Dance Legacy: Celebrating the Life of Ian Horvath. The three-part performance will honor Horvath’s impact on dance in Cleveland and will recognize his work as an AIDS advocate. Tragically, he lost his battle to AIDS at the age of 46. 

Horvath is best known in Cleveland as a founder of the Cleveland Ballet and a former soloist with the Joffrey Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. Later, he was the producing director of the Jose Limon Dance Foundation. 

His legacy will live on through this special evening of dance at the Breen Center for the Performing Arts, which includes two Horvath ballets beloved by Cleveland and international audiences, excerpts from a documentary celebrating Horvath’s life, and the premiere of a new ballet by Kay Eichman, a former dancer with Cleveland Ballet. A pre-show panel on stage at 7:15 pm will discuss the AIDS epidemic and its impact on a generation of Cleveland dancers, who were lost to the disease. This performance is generously supported by the Cleveland Foundation.

Photo: Christopher Duggan Photography


February 9, 2019 8:00pm


Breen Center for the Performing Arts
2008 W. 30th St.
Cleveland, OH 44113
Located on the campus of St. Ignatius


$35 Preferred Seating
$28 Center Seating
$25 Side Seating
$10 Select Seating
Student Discount Available

Tickets are sold through EventBrite
Box Office fee will apply


Get tickets for Dance Legacy: Celebrating the Life of Ian Horvath

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Ian (Ernie) Horvath (1943-1990)

Ian (Ernie) Horvath, was formerly producing director of the Jose Limon Dance Foundation, a founder of the Cleveland Ballet, and a soloist with Joffrey Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. He died of AIDS in 1990. Mr. Horvath was 46 years old. “Ernie Horvath was one of the wisest, most ecumenical, most passionate artists and counselors that dance will ever know,” Donald A. Moore, executive director of Dance/USA, a national service organization for professional dance, said. “He was an irresistible statesman. He had valuable, informed opinions on esthetics and institutions, steps and balance sheets, and he used these effectively in a life dedicated to the advancement of the art form he loved.” Mr. Horvath, a native of Cleveland, danced with Joffrey Ballet from 1964 to 1966, creating roles in Gerald Arpino’s “Viva Vivaldi!” and “Olympics.” In the mid-1960s, he also appeared on Broadway in “Sweet Charity,” “Funny Girl,” and “Fade Out-Fade In.” He also danced in television specials. Mr. Horvath, a faunlike, mercurial dancer, joined American Ballet Theatre in 1967, appearing in a variety of classical and contemporary roles. He left in 1972 to found the Cleveland Ballet (later the Cleveland-San Jose Ballet) with Dennis Nahat, and was its artistic director until 1983. His final performance as a dancer was in 1988 at City Center, when he appeared in “Together,” a program featuring Cynthia Gregory and Fernando Bujones. Mr. Horvath began choreographing in 1974. His last piece, created for the Limon Dance Company in 1988, was No Dominion, a dance inspired by his illness. His ballets are in the repertories of the Cleveland-San Jose Ballet, Ballet Nuevo de Caracas, the Limon Dance Company, Ballet Tucson, Verb Ballets, and Pacific Northwest Ballet. Mr. Horvath was an articulate spokesman for dance and for people with AIDS. He was associate director of the Carlisle Project, a national developmental program for ballet choreographers, and had been chairman of Dance/USA and a dance panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts and the Ohio Arts Council. He was also a consultant to the City Center in New York and was developing special dance projects when he died.

The Breen Center for the Performing Arts

at St. Ignatius High School
2008 W. 30th St.
Cleveland, OH 44113

Free parking is available at the theatre.