Kristi Boone, former soloist with ABT, has been dancing for most of her life. Born in Rochester, New York, she started ballet exclusively at the age of 13 at the celebrated Draper Center for Dance Education. There she received intensive training in ballet, pointe, variations, modern and jazz. By the age of 15, she danced the lead in Timothy Draper’s Firebird and the Sugar Plum Fairy in Rochester City Ballet’s The Nutcracker, as well as many other contemporary ballets and new works under the direction of Timothy Draper and Jamey Leverett.
At 15, Kristi received a full scholarship to the Chautauqua Institute under the direction of Jean Pierre Bonnefeux. The following two years she attended American Ballet Theatre’s Summer Intensive program where she was awarded the National Coca Cola scholarship (only awarded to 5 people world-wide) for both years. She was accepted to both the San Francisco Ballet and the Pacific Northwest Ballet Company.
Ms. Boone was invited to join the American Ballet Theatre’s Studio Company when she was a junior in high school. She completed 2 years of high school in one and entered the Studio Company, under the direction of John Meehan, in 1999. While there she received the Scholarship in Perpetuation of the Spirit of Anika Der Cahill presented by Kevin McKenzie and John Meehan. Her roles with the Studio Company included: Lead in Oblivion by Jessica Lang, Blue pas de deux in Return to a Strange Land by Jeri Killian, Lead in Bitter Moon by Natalie Weir, Allegro Brilliante by George Balanchine, soloist in Moto Verso by Scott Rink, soloist in School Work by William Tuckett from The Royal Ballet, Lead in Robert Hill’s Marimba.
Kristi was invited to join the main company of ABT in 2000 by Kevin McKenzie. In 2007, Kristi was promoted to a soloist. Her roles include: The Siren in George Balanchine’s The Prodigal Son, Queen of Dryads and Mercedes in Don Quixote, Katherine in Christoper Wheeldon’s VIII, Odalisque and Lead Pirate Woman in Le Corsaire, Zulma and Batilde in Giselle, Lead Maiden in Alexei Ratmansky’s Firebird and the principal couple in Symphony #9, Leading roles in Twyla Tharp’s Rabbit and Rogue and The Upper Room, Fourth Pas de Deux in Anthony Tudor’s The Leaves are Fading, Step sister and Twig in James Kudelka’s Cinderella, Partisan Woman in The Green Table, Lead woman in Paul Taylor’s Airs, Diana in Sylvia, Two Swans and Princess in Swan Lake, 1st song in Antony Tudor’s Dark Elegies, many leading roles in The Sleeping Beauty (staged by Kevin McKenzie and Gelsey Kirkland), Soloist in Theme and Variations, Symphony in C, Ballo de Regina by George Balanchine, Principal in Kirk Petersons Amazed in Burning Dreams, Pas de deux with Marcelo Gomes in Petite Mort and Sinfonietta by Jiri Kylian, Lead in WorkwithinWork by William Forsythe, Lead Lover in Experience in Pillar of Fire, An Episode from his Past in Jardin Aux Lilas both by Antony Tudor, Lead role in Mark Morris’s Gong, Leading roles in Roberts Hills Marimba and Concerto #1, Juliet in Romeo and Juliet with Robert Hill’s Project Ballet Theatre performed with Rasta Thomas, The Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, Le Grande Pas Classique, and numerous other classical and contemporary pas de deux’s in show’s across the country, roles created in Harrison Tribute by Stanton Welch, Leading roles created in Jorma Elo’s C to C and Glow Stop. Performed with various choreographers and in pieces performed throughout New York City, the country, and internationally.
In 2009, Kristi was awarded Pointe magazine’s “Standout Performance” for her role as The Siren in The Prodigal Son. In 2005, Dance Magazine named her one of the Top 25 to Watch. Included among her numerous awards are: 1st place and High Honor award at the 1999 New England Ballet Awards, 1st place and High Score award at the 1998-99 New York Dance Olympics, 1st place, for two consecutive years, at the New York Dance Championships, and scholarship and top overall entrant for the 1997 Rochester Invitational.
In between seasons with ABT, Kristi has performed Edward Liang’s Distant Cries and Alex Ratmansky’s Bolero, for The Morphoses Company under the direction of Christopher Wheeldon and Lourdes Lopez. She also toured various locations in Spain with Angel Corella and Stars Company performing William Forsythe’s WorkwithinWork, Don Quixote suite, and Stanton Welch’s Clear. She has toured all around the country and world performing on stages such as, The Parthenon in Athens, Greece, The White House in Washington DC, China, Japan, Russia, Oman, France, London, Korea, and numerous other international and regional locations.
Her teachers and choreographers include: Alexei Ratmansky, Jorma Elo, Christopher Wheeldon, Benjamin Millepied, David Howard, William Burmann, Kirk Peterson, Susan Jones, Georgina Parkinson, Irina Kolplakova, Nancy Raffa, Lupe Serrano, Christopher Carr, David Parsons, Natalie Weir, Mark Morris, Jacques Cesbron, Cynthia Harvey, Jean-Pierre Bonnefeux, John Meehan, Kevin McKenzie, Natalia Makarova, Roslyn Anderson, William Forsythe.
Kristi was also a model and spokesperson for Gaynor Minden, as well as modeling for Capezio, Freed, Martha Stewart Magazine, Quest Magazine, Pointe Magazine, Glamour magazine, and Saks Fifth Avenue catalog.
Kristi teaches classes at numerous locations in the United States to students ranging in age from 5 and up. She instructs master classes, workshops, ballet intensives, and coaches at schools in the New York City area and beyond. She focuses on technique, quality of movement, port de bras, and preparation for the stage. Kristi teaches all levels of technique, pointe, and partnering classes. She is also a private coach to many local students and professionals. Along with her husband, former ABT dancer Isaac Stappas, she teaches partnering classes as well. Her goal is to help each dancer attain his/her goals and full potential while being positive and helpful.
“I truly believe in giving 100% of myself to each student and hopefully impacting his/her dancing, confidence, and performance quality with a positive attitude and focus on details. Dance is as much mental as physical, and it’s important to prepare one for both. I gain just as much as hopefully my students gain from what I have to offer them!”
Kristi has a B.F.A from Long Island University.
Pointe Magazine: Top 12 Standout Performances (2009) – written by Kina Poon… “Although she’s been a soloist since 2007, Kristi Boone has rarely been given the chance to carry a ballet. But during a foray into principal territory last June as the Siren, she looked every inch the part, from the sensuous, exaggerated curves of her legs and feet to her beautiful face, stoic and imposing. It was a dangerous, exciting debut. Her dancing was icy and deliberate—she pulled off the tricky Balanchine choreography with finesse. Boone had been itching to wield the Siren’s red cape since ABT’s last run of Prodigal in 2000, when she was still with ABT II. She relishes the role as a rare opportunity for a female dancer. “You’re usually the damsel in distress,” she says. “You never get to have that much power.””
Dance Magazine: Top 25 to Watch (2005) – written by Kate Lydon… “During adagio Kristi Boone’s long hyperextended legs continuously rise, curl, and unfold like smoke. The sultry almond-eyed beauty is a choreographer’s dream, combining sensuality and grace with athleticism, sophistication, and musicality. The American Ballet Theatre corps dancer from Rochester, New York, is exciting in both classical and contemporary work, and each new ballet reveals another layer of ability. “Kristi has a highly developed dramatic sense for someone so young,” says John Meehan, director of ABT’s Studio Company and mentor to Boone. “Choreographers come in and want to use her. I think John Cranko would have gone nuts for her, and MacMillan, too.” From her ghostly Zulma in Giselle Act II, to her flesh-and-blood beauty in Jiri Kylian’s Petit Mort, to her gum-smacking, swaggering Harlot in Romeo and Juliet, Boone makes an impression. What’s next for this smoldering talent? One hint: Heat rises.”
Haglund’s Heel: “Kristi Boone in her debut this evening as the Siren in Prodigal Sonopposite Angel Corella. She was a smashing success! Gorgeous from top of the head right to her toes with legs and feet that presented a stunning curve….”
New York Times: Anna Kisselgoff (Nov. 1 2003) …”The Superior Piece is Petite Mort a suite of duets… The stunner is the duet by Kristi Boone and Marcelo Gomes…”
Explore Dance: For WorkwithinWork (2003)…”Kristi Boone and Misty Copeland two strong dancers sparkled, performing with necessary aggression and articulation, but without strain.”
Dance Magazine: Marimba created by Robert Hill for the Studio Company…”The company is well drilled, gracious, and technically spectacular but two dancers are standouts, fledging stars. Tall, supple Kristi Boone, moves with serenity, expressive conviction and maturity far beyond her years and partner 20 year old Ricardo Torres…(In marimba), the crowning moment is Boone’s long, breathtaking balance on pointe that finally erupts into an arcing back attitude, that alone is well worth the price of admission.”