Margaret Tracey joined the faculty of Boston Ballet School in 2005 and was appointed Director in 2007. In that time, she has transformed this highly respected regional academy into one of the leading dance education institutions in North America.
Since retiring from New York City Ballet in 2002, Tracey has become one of the country’s most admired and dedicated teachers and arts education advocates. Profiled in a 2009 issue of Dance Teacher Magazine and recognized by the Jerome Robbins Foundation in 2011, she has been instrumental in designing a curriculum that emphasizes comprehensive ballet training and overall excellence along with a well-rounded approach to dance study. Her stature in the dance world has brought BBS extraordinary access to the study and performance of choreography by both George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins.
Drawing on her teaching experience, studies in psychology, and ties to community clinicians, Tracey instituted a comprehensive Wellness Program at Boston Ballet School. She also established Next Generation, a year-end performance showcasing Pre-Professional Program students, in collaboration with the New England Conservatory, which has become an annual highlight that spotlights the School as a leader in local and regional arts education. Tracey has further distinguished the School by fostering pre-professional exchange programs with the Royal Danish Ballet and the National Ballet School of Canada and building strong cooperative relationships with such local institutions as Lasell College, Endicott College and Northeastern University.
Born in Pueblo, Colorado, Tracey began ballet studies with her mother, Nancy Tracey, at age six. In 1982, she was accepted as a student at the School of American Ballet, the official school of New York City Ballet (NYCB). At SAB, she was the recipient of an Atlantic Richfield Foundation scholarship (1982-85) as well as a Princess Grace Foundation award (1985-86) that cited her “exceptional promise and dedication to excellence.
In 1986, Tracey joined the NYCB corps de ballet, launching a celebrated 16-year stage career. A principal dancer from 1991 until her 2002 retirement, she excelled in the Balanchine repertoire, appearing frequently in such core works as Apollo, Ballo della Regina, Concerto Barocco, Coppelia, Serenade, Symphony in C, Vienna Waltzes, Western Symphony, and Who Cares?, among others. She was also featured in a range of Robbins’ ballets, including Afternoon of a Faun, The Four Seasons, and The Goldberg Variations, and created a role in the choreographer’s Ives, Songs (1988). She originated roles in works by Richard Tanner, William Forsythe, Ib Andersen, Trey McIntyre, and NYCB Ballet Master in Chief Peter Martins, including his Les Petits Riens, Fearful Symmetries, Zakouski and his production of The Sleeping Beauty, in which she appeared both as Princess Aurora and Princess Florine.
With NYCB, Tracey toured in Europe and Asia, appeared in the PBS “Live from Lincoln Center” series, and danced the Marzipan Shepherdess in the 1993 film of Balanchine’s The Nutcracker. As a stager, she has set Martins’ Zakouski on the Royal Danish Ballet and Bavarian State Ballet and his Fearful Symmetries on Pennsylvania Ballet. In addition, during her tenure with Boston Ballet, she has staged a number of Balanchine works including Concerto Barocco and Symphony in C for the Company, and Scherzo a la Russe, Scotch Symphony and Raymonda Variations, as well as Robbins’ Fanfare, for the School’s annual Next Generation performance.