The dance world mourns the loss of Janet Panetta, a beloved figure and veteran of the American Ballet Theatre, who passed away on December 2, 2023, following a courageous battle with cancer.
The Early Years of Janet Panetta
Janet Panetta’s journey into the world of dance began at a tender age, as she trained in ballet at the Metropolitan Opera Ballet School under the guidance of esteemed mentors Margaret Craske, Antony Tudor, and Alfredo Corvino. Her talent and dedication were evident early on, and by the age of 14, she was already working as Margaret Craske’s teaching assistant, gaining invaluable experience that would shape her future as a dance educator.
A Pioneering Career in Modern Dance
In 1968, Janet Panetta joined the American Ballet Theatre, marking the start of a remarkable career in modern dance. She became a member of Paul Sanasardo’s company and later extended her influence by coaching dancers for various prestigious European and American companies. Notable among these were ROSAS, Pina Bausch, Paul Taylor, Merce Cunningham, and Trisha Brown.
In the 1980s, Panetta took her expertise overseas, accepting an invitation from the French to become the sole ballet instructor at their newly established school for modern dancers in 1984. Her impact was profound, as all twenty of her students, including renowned choreographer Jerome Bel, went on to achieve remarkable success in their careers.
Janet Panetta Died: What Happened to Her?
Janet Panetta, a beloved ballet teacher known for her warmth and affection, succumbed to illness after bravely fighting for more than a year. The news of her passing has left the New York Ballet dancer community in deep sorrow, with community members expressing their grief and condolences. In a touching tribute, Agostina D’alessandro shared heartfelt sentiments on their Facebook post.
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Honoring Janet Panetta’s Memory
The Panetta family has requested privacy during this difficult time, and details regarding her obituary and funeral arrangements will be shared when the family feels ready. In the meantime, the dance community, as well as her students and admirers, have begun to reflect on the impact of Janet Panetta’s contributions to modern ballet, ensuring that her legacy endures through the generations of dancers she has inspired.
Janet Panetta‘s life serves as a testament to the transformative power of dance and education, leaving behind a legacy that will continue to shape the world of modern ballet for years to come.