San Jose Dance Theatre (SJDT) promotes the positive impact of dance in Silicon Valley through accessible performances, excellent training, creative outreach, and collaboration across the arts. We strive to illuminate the human experience while enriching an appreciation of movement and music to an expanding and diverse audience. We value and maintain excellence in classical ballet and contemporary dance training in our school, pre-professional programs and professional ballet company, providing innovative opportunities for dancers of all levels. We seek to engage our community through collaboration with artists, arts organizations, government and private sectors.


San Jose Dance Theatre was originally founded in 1964 as Paul E. Curtis Jr.’s Los Gatos Academy of Dance and the West Valley Ballet Foundation. The name was later changed to San Jose Dance Theatre in 1965 and incorporated as a nonprofit educational organization. For more than 58 years, San Jose Dance Theatre has specialized in classical ballet training for children from four years of age, to the advanced pre-professional level. Many SJDT alumni have gone on to prominent University and Conservatory programs, as well as successful careers in dance.

San Jose Dance Theatre has delighted local audiences for five decades with performances including Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, & Sleeping Beauty. In December 2023, we will celebrate our 58th annual production of The Original San Jose Nutcracker at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts. 

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Statement

SJDT is committed to cultivating an organization that is inclusive in artistic expression and embraces diversity on stage and off.

SJDT seeks to build the individual and organizational capacity to enact systemic change on issues of equity and social inequality.

Our Core Values

SJDT’s values outline a strong workforce, who act as a team to deliver high quality outcomes. Through a positive and inclusive environment, our staff understands working together is integral to the success of our programs. As a result, we are able to leverage each individual’s skills to achieve our mission at a faster pace.

Board of Directors:

President – Elizabeth Sweeney
Vice President: John Torrey
Treasurer – Brandon Lewke
Secretary – Michael Howerton
Kay Pettitt, Jennifer Joyce, Barbi Hamilton, John Draginoff