Media & PR

TBT joins major dance companies for hurricane benefit

Major dance companies from across United States stage “Hearts for Houston” to raise funds for Hurricane Harvey relief.


Several major dance companies from across the country are joining forces to raise money for United Way of Greater Houston’s Harvey Relief Fund. “Hearts for Houston” will feature a live performance and silent auction at The Ailey Citigroup Theater in New York on Sunday, Oct. 22 at 7 p.m.

The relief fund was established by United Way of Greater Houston in response to the widespread destruction caused by Hurricane Harvey. All of the money raised by United Way’s Relief Fund will be used to help individuals and families with both immediate, basic needs and long-term recovery services such as disaster case management, minor home repair and, as the recovery progresses, a wide range of unmet needs for which no other help is available.

“We are inspired by and so grateful for the generosity of these creative groups coming together to support those affected by this devastating storm,” said Anna M. Babin, president and CEO of United Way of Greater Houston. “This incredible contribution will allow us to continue helping so many of our neighbors recover and rebuild their lives in the wake of Hurricane Harvey.”

Dancers from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, American Ballet Theater, Houston Ballet, New York City Ballet, Texas Ballet Theater, The Washington Ballet, and more will be appearing in the performance. Included in the live performance is a World Premiere by Ben Stevenson, as well as works by Robert Battle, Alvin Ailey, Alexei Ratmansky and Stanton Welch.

The “Hearts for Houston” concept was developed by Yuriko Kajiya and Jared Matthews, who are both Principal Dancers with Houston Ballet, after witnessing firsthand the incredible destruction of Hurricane Harvey. Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, both long-time supporters of the Houston Ballet and United Way of Greater Houston, have partnered with Kajiya and Matthews to sponsor this event.

Neiman Marcus graciously donated to assist with the production and logistics of the performance. “At a time when so many people have been devastated by hurricanes, floods, fires, and earthquakes, it is remarkable to see the beauty of the arts coming together to support the greater community.  We are honored to partner with Texas Ballet Theater and their unselfish commitment to the relief efforts,” said Kevin Hurst, director of charitable giving and associate volunteerism at Neiman Marcus.

To attend the live performance, tickets can be purchased at Attendees can purchase a general admission ticket for $150 or a VIP ticket for $250, which includes a pre-performance reception and an artist talk/demonstration by former ballerina Merrill Ashley. A Premiere Access ticket can be purchased for $500 and includes access to dress rehearsal and a post-show toast with performers in addition to the VIP offerings.

For those who cannot attend the live performance but wish to make a contribution to the United Way Relief Fund, visit


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