Richard William Schafer

Title: President of the Board
Company: Nantucket Dance Theater
Location: Nantucket, Massachusetts, United States

Richard William Schafer, President of the Board at Nantucket Dance Theater, has been recognized by Marquis Who’s Who Top Artists for dedication, achievements, and leadership in the performing arts.

With decades of experience to his credit, Mr. Schafer has excelled as the president of the board at the Nantucket Dance Theater since 2014. In this position, he provides high-quality ballet instruction to children as well as adult beginners utilizing an age-appropriate eight-level program certified by the American Ballet Theatre’s National Training Curriculum. Prior to this appointment, he was active in various roles throughout the restaurant and hospitality industry between 1983 and 2013. Mr. Schafer began his career as a soloist with the American Ballet Theatre from 1972 and 1983, during which time he performed in myriad esteemed and reputable productions in New York City.

In addition to his many live performances with the American Ballet Theatre, Mr. Schafer appeared in the television films “American Ballet Theatre: Giselle,” part of the “Live from Lincoln Center” program in 1977, “The Nutcracker” in 1977 and “Don Quixote (Kitri’s Wedding), a Ballet in Three Acts” in 1984. He had also notably trained and performed alongside Mikhail Baryshnikov during his tenure at the American Ballet Theatre. As a testament to his professionalism and stellar contributions to his craft, Mr. Schafer has been highlighted in published articles for Time Magazine in 1978, The Washington Post in 1980 and The New Yorker in 2012.

Before embarking on his professional path, Mr. Schafer pursued an education at the Cranford School of Ballet, training in ballet in 1962. He would continue refining his skills and knowledge at the Banff School of Fine Arts in 1969. After attending the National Academy of Ballet in Washington, D.C. in 1970, Mr. Schafer concluded his formal training and studies at the School of American Ballet between 1970 and 1972.

Having initially studied ballet at the age of 9, Mr. Schafer attributes his success to hard work. He is also grateful to have received a scholarship from the National Ballet Academy and been taught by the likes of Frederic Franklin of the Royal Ballet. A native of Dallas, Texas, he is incredibly proud to have defied the odds to perform on the big stage at the American Ballet Theatre among many notable dancers, including Cynthia Gregory, with whom he danced during a concerto. Looking toward the future, Mr. Schafer would like to see The Nantucket Dance Theater grow into a serious, professional, flourishing company, with their first course of action to be continuing the Nantucket Dance Festival.

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