SAN FRANCISCO (Pointe) — Longtime San Francisco Ballet (SFB) principals (and husband and wife) Davit Karapetyan and Vanessa Zahorian have announced their retirement at the end of the 2017 season. They’ll make a cross-country move to become the joint artistic directors of the Pennsylvania Ballet Academy. In addition to new directors, the academy will have a new facility, beginning this summer.
Zahorian was born in Allentown, Penn. and received her training at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and the Kirov Academy of Ballet. She joined the SFB in 1999 and was promoted to principal dancer in 2002. She was appointed Diane B. Wilsey Principal Dancer in 2014.
Karapetyan was born in Yerevan. He was trained at the Armenian School of Ballet and later the Schweizerische Ballettberufsschule in Switzerland. He joined the company as a principal dancer in 2005 and was appointed John and Barbara Osterweis Principal Dancer in 2013.
During her 20-year career with SFB, Zahorian was known for interpretations of all the major classics, as well as her roles in major works by current choreographers like Christopher Wheeldon and Mark Morris.
There will be a farewell performance for both dancers at the end of the season.