Tatiana Dokoudovska Library for Dance
The Tatiana Dokoudovska Library for Dance is the home of the Kansas City Ballet Archives which documents the history of the Kansas City Ballet. The KCB Archives also includes personal collections of its three former artistic directors:
1) the Tatiana Dokoudovska Collection (1890-1995);
2) the Todd Bolender Collection (1924-2006); and
3) the William Whitener Collection (1959-present).
Thanks to a generous grant from the Kansas City Ballet Guild, the Kansas City Ballet Archives began surveying and collecting materials in 2008. These records and artifacts are now housed in the Todd Bolender Center for Dance & Creativity.
Kansas City Ballet Archives
The core collection of the Kansas City Ballet Archives contains records generated by the Kansas City Ballet Board of Directors, staff, school, guild, and individual donations from the greater Kansas City Community of dancers, patrons and supporters. The collection spans 1957-2012 with the bulk of the records dating after 1980.
The Dokoudovska Collection contains collected publications and personal artifacts of Tatiana Dokoudovska, dancer, choreographer, teacher and founder of the Kansas City Civic Ballet. Miss Dokoudovska was born in France and received her training there. She joined the faculty of the conservatory of Music of Kansas City in 1954 and founded the Conservatory’s Dance Department, where she taught for 32 years until her retirement in 1989. In 1957, while at the Conservatory, she founded the ballet company which is today’s Kansas City Ballet. The Dokoudovska Collection spans 1890-1995 with the bulk of records from the 1950s-1970s.
The Bolender Collection contains personal papers and artifacts of Todd Bolender, dancer, choreographer, teacher and ballet director. Bolender spent the final third of his 70-year career in Kansas City as Artistic Director of the Kansas City Ballet (1981-1995) (State Ballet of Missouri 1986-1990) and Director Emeritus (1996-2006). Bolender’s records constitute the first processed collection of the Kansas City Ballet Archives. The collection spans Bolender’s lifetime with the bulk of records dating after 1960.
The Whitener Collection contains personal papers and artifacts of William Whitener, dancer, choreographer, teacher and artistic director. Whitener succeeded Todd Bolender as artistic director of the Kansas City Ballet and remained there for 17 years, 1996-2013.