Northfield, IL | July 5, 2022 | Dance Data Project® (DDP) today released its expanded annual Largest 150 U.S. Ballet & Classically Based Companies & Financial Scope of the Industry. The Report provides a national ranking based on company expenditures. DDP utilized publicly available Form 990s, supplemented by self-reporting and verification from companies directly as well as a bespoke proprietary algorithm gathering data directly from IRS websites for the FY 2020 report. DDP examined a total of 188 companies, a 49% increase from last year’s Report.

“Last year, DDP expanded coverage of the Largest 50 U.S. ballet companies to include the Next 50. In 2022, we have taken our reporting one step further, widening our scope to rank 150 total ballet companies, with the lower-budgeted organizations falling into the Additional 50 category. This is largely due to the help of innovative data scraping tools,” said Rebecca Ferrell, Dance Data Project® Research Lead & Programming Consultant.

This Report examines, for the first time, the budgetary impact of the onset of the pandemic on the largest – and smallest – U.S. ballet companies. DDP found that the aggregate expenses for the Largest 50 companies (as ranked based on FY 2020 data and compared to the Largest 50 ranked based on FY 2019 data) dropped by approximately 12% from the previous year, totaling $586,724,176.

“The entertainment sector in general, especially the performing arts and most of all dance, were asymmetrically hit by pandemic-related unemployment. With many dancers reporting no income for this time period, it will be interesting to see how the salaries of the directors of these companies were affected (or not) by budget cuts,” said Elizabeth Yntema, President & Founder of Dance Data Project®. “Part 2 of this Report, due to be released in late-July, will examine Artistic & Executive Leadership and help us dig further into fiscal year 2020.”

The classical dance industry as a whole makes a considerable economic contribution, but it is important to recognize the significant disparity in size between the largest few companies and the rest.

DDP determined the aggregate expenses for the Next 50 accounted for only 8% of the expenses of the Largest 50 in FY 2020. Taking another step down the rankings, the Additional 50 spent only 2.5% of the aggregate expenses for the Largest 50 in FY 2020.  “By expanding our research to cover an Additional 50 companies, with only 2.5% of the expenditures of the Largest 50 organizations, DDP is painting a more comprehensive picture of the classical dance economy in the United States – underlining how dominant the few, largest companies are,” said Hayley Weber, Dance Data Project® Research Coordinator.

To inquire about sources, operational definitions, or further classifications for the Largest 150, or to learn more about DDP’s research in general, please contact Research Coordinator Hayley Weber at

The Largest 150 U.S. Ballet & Classically Based Companies & Financial Scope of the Industry Report is available on the Dance Data Project® Research Page or by download below.