Patti Eylar is a dancer, educator, and philanthropist. She moved to Chicago from California in the late 1970s to dance for the Lyric Opera Ballet. She was a founding member of the Chicago City Ballet under Artistic Director Maria Tallchief and danced with Ballet Chicago from 1987-1993. Eylar has served on the boards of many dance organizations, teaches at several Chicago dance studios, and co-directs Chicago Ballet Arts. In 2011, she received the Ruth Page Award for her contributions to the Chicago dance community. 


June 27, 2017: Patti Eylar’s interview surveys the Chicago ballet scene from the 1970s to the present from her perspective, first as a dancer for the Chicago City Ballet and Ballet Chicago, then as a teacher and board member for various dance organizations. She recalls working with Maria Tallchief and Dan Duell and traces the effects of history on the current Chicago dance landscape.

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