I'm curious as to where Ballet West fits into the hierarchy of best regional companies. Where do they fit in relation to San Francisco, Boston, Miami, PNB, Houston, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Joffrey, others? Perhaps San Francisco is more in line with NYCB and ABT?
In response to the same question about PNB, Peter Boal once said in a Q&A that the unofficial top three are NYCB, ABT, and San Francisco Ballet, and everyone else is fighting to be recognized as fourth. All of the "Big Three" are significantly larger than the other companies: SFB, the smallest, with 77 dancers, has 35 corps and six apprentices. and 41 is more than the total size of many mid-size companies: Ballet West has 37 dancers in total , Ballet Arizona has 29, PNB has 46, MCB 44, Joffrey has 42, and Pennsylvania Ballet 36.
San Francisco Ballet has the advantages of having been the oldest company in the US -- the oldest of the Children of Balanchine -- and having taken the bull by the horns to get international recognition, because before there was a "Top 3", there was a "Top Two," and now SFB has gotten tour reviews stronger than either NYCB or ABT.
Whatever the merits of the show, Ballet West has put itself on the map nationally.
They are also having a contest to win a 30-minute video chat with a cast member, which is tax-deductible to all but the winner. (The website doesn't say who chooses.) The drawing is on 9th July:http://www.balletwest.org/win-a-chat