Julie Kent has been Artistic Director of The Washington Ballet since July 2016 and was the longest serving ballerina in the American Ballet Theatre’s 80 year history. Julie is married to Victor Barbee, Associate Artistic Director of The Washington Ballet, a position he has also held since 2016. During Julie’s long performing career, she acquired a vast repertoire dancing over 100 ballets. Victor’s repertoire with American Ballet Theatre also includes more than 100 ballets. Together, they share the following thoughts on what they love about French-American culture.
Favorite place to visit in France, and why?
Paris…because it is one of the greatest cities in the world.
Favorite place to visit in America, and why?
What do you think the French can learn from Americans?
What do you think Americans can learn from the French?
Favorite French film?
Le Ballon Rouge.
Favorite American film?
The Red Shoes.
Favorite French actor or actress?
Favorite American actor or actress?
Most important French figure in history and why?
Louis XIV — ballet!
Most influential American figure and why?
George Washington for founding a democracy and refusing the role of a Monarch.
What is your favorite American luxury?
My Sleep Number bed.
What is your favorite French extravagance?
Favorite American food?
Favorite French food?
All of it.
The quality you most admire about the French and Americans?
Beauty and hard work.
What do you consider your greatest achievement?
Which talent would you most like to have?
Either meditation or organization…or are they the same thing?!
Name three people, dead or alive, who you would most like to have dinner with?
Gandhi, my father and Cher.
Relative to your field of study, what is the most important tradition to keep alive?
The aspiration for improvement.
What is your idea of perfect happiness?
Time with those I love.
Julie Kent’s photo is by Dean Alexander