Founded in 1963, this nationally renowned, 42-member company has seen great success under the leadership of Roy Kaiser, a former principal dancer. The company is known for diverse classical dance (with Merce Cunningham and Christopher Wheeldon choreography occasionally in the mix) and a Balanchine backbone. They perform at the Academy of Music and Merriam Theater during the annual season. The Christmas-season performances of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker, with the complete Balanchine choreography, are a beloved city tradition. Each of the company's dozens of performances, held from September to June, offers something old, something new, and always something interesting.