Paula Weber received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance from Butler University and her Master of Fine Arts degree in Dance from Smith College. She was a faculty member (1990-2020) and Chair of the UMKC Conservatory Dance Division (2007-2020) when she retired ending her academic career. She has studied ballet with such masters as George Verdak, William Glenn, Peggy Dorsey, Bud Kerwin, Betty Gore (Butler) Maria Tallchief, Richard Tanner (Lyric Opera Ballet of Chicago) Jean Paul Comelin, Dermot Burke, Bobby Rodham, Basil Thompson, Paul Sutherland, Ted Kivitt, Brunilda Ruiz (Milwaukee Ballet), Larry Long, Marjorie Mussman, and Maggie Black (favorite teachers). During her professional career, Ms. Weber performed solo and principal roles of more than 45 major works which include such classics as Swan Lake (Odette/Odile), Giselle (Giselle), Romeo and Juliet (Juliet), Cinderella (Cinderella) and Coppelia (Swanhilda), and contemporary works as George Balanchine’s Concerto Barocco (First Violin), Serenade (Dark Angel,) Scotch Symphony (Sylph), Stars and Stripes (2nd regiment principal, Pas de Dix (principal), Agnes DeMille’s Fall River Legend (Lizzy Borden), John Butler’s Carmina Burana, Ruth Page (Merry Widow) and Alvin Ailey’s The River. She has worked with renowned choreographers such as Bill T. Jones, Margo Sappington, Daryl Gray, Laura Dean, Jean Paul Comelin, Michael Uthoff, Sean Curran, Gerard Charles, Peter Anastos, Charles Moulton, Milton Meyers and Kevin “Iega” Jeff. She has been a member of the Milwaukee Ballet (principal), the Albany Berkshire Ballet (principal), Lyric Opera Ballet of Chicago (soloist), Chicago Ballet and the Indianapolis Ballet Theatre, and guest principal artist with the Hartford Ballet. She has served as the assistant director and rehearsal director for the Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company and is ballet mistress for the Albany Berkshire Ballet.
Ms. Weber has been a guest instructor of ballet in many prestigious schools throughout the United States. In 1996, she was invited to be a guest instructor of ballet for the Shenyang Conservatory of Music, Shenyang, China, making her the second American ballet instructor to teach at that conservatory. She also was invited in the spring of 2015 to guest teach in Tianjin, China and Sofia, Bulgaria and returned to both spring of 2018 and 2019. Ms. Weber was the 1997 recipient of the Mrs. Ewing Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award, the 2001 recipient of the Muriel McBrien Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award, the 2007-2008 recipient of the Muriel McBrien Kauffman Excellence in Teaching Award and the 2011 and 2017 Muriel McBrien Kauffman Faculty Service Award all presented to her by the Conservatory of Music and Dance, University of Missouri – Kansas City. She was also the 2016 winner of the CORPS de Ballet International Outstand Service Award. She is on the official adjudicator list for Regional Dance America. Ms. Weber was a site-evaluator and sat on the Commission for the National Association of Schools of Dance. She served as a site evaluator for the Hong Kong Academy of Arts for two years. She served as secretary, President-elect, President, and Past-President of the CORPS de Ballet International, Inc. In 2019, Ms. Weber became a Fulbright Specialist and traveled to Bulgaria to teach ballet for numerous schools and professional companies and will remain on the roster through May of 2023.
The Kansas City Ballet, the Albany Berkshire Ballet, the Kansas Regional Ballet, Lawrence Ballet Theatre, Heartland Youth Ballet, the Wylliams/Henry Contemporary Dance Company, Midwest Youth Ballet, Alexandra Ballet, Kansas City Youth Ballet, Allegro Ballet of Houston, Jacksonville University, Washington University, and City in Motion have performed Ms. Weber’s choreography. Her first professional choreographic work, “Carmina Burana”, was performed by the Kansas City Ballet in 1996 with repeated performances in 1998 and May of 2002. In 2003 Ms. Weber was commissioned to create a new ballet for the Kansas City Ballet, “Canzone” which later by invitation became the three-movement ballet, “Toccata e due Canzoni”, created for the 2005 Fall Season of the Kansas City Ballet. She has received three Craft of Choreography Awards from Regional Dance America (2004, 2008, and 2014). “From Within” and “Off Center” was selected to be performed for the Young Tanzsommer Dance Festival in Austria by the Allegro Ballet of Houston. In 2010 she received the Regional Dance America National Choreographic Award and was named a choreographer for the 2011 National Choreographers Initiative. Her ballet Lento performed by Allegro Ballet of Houston was selected for the 2017 National Regional Dance America Festival. For the 50th anniversary of the Albany Berkshire Ballet, Ms. Weber was commissioned to create a new full length “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”.