Houston Ballet promotes Jared Matthews

Jared Matthews and artists of Houston Ballet perform EtudesHouston Ballet Artistic Director Stanton Welch promoted Jared Matthews to the rank of principal dancer after a well-received performance as Lucentio in John Cranko’s production of The Taming of the Shrew on Saturday, June 20.


“Jared has proven to be of principal caliber time and time again this season,” Welch said. “As a member of Houston Ballet, he has tackled a variety of lead roles and given technically thrilling and deeply moving, nuanced performances. It gives me great pleasure to promote him to the rank of principal.”


Since his arrival at Houston Ballet in June of 2014, Matthews has distinguished himself in several roles, including Solor in Stanton Welch’s La Bayadère, Romeo and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet and the male lead in Paquita; the Prince in Ben Stevenson’s The Nutcracker and Lysander in John Neumeier’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. His repertoire highlights also include Albrecht and Hilarion in Giselle, Camille in The Merry Widow, Lensky in Onegin, as well as numerous other ballet classics.


Houston Ballet Male Principal DancerHouston Chronicle dance critic Molly Glentzer praised his performance in Harald Lander’s Etudes by stating, “I half-expected to see sparks flying from Jared Matthews’ feet as he executed amazingly facile entrechats, and he utilized his long legs beautifully to get mile-high in his jumps.”


A native Houstonian, Matthews received his early ballet training there under the guidance of Victoria Vittum and Gilbert Rome. He was awarded a full scholarship to study at North Carolina School of the Arts summer program as well as the School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theatre (ABT). While attending ABT’s Summer Intensive Program in 2001 as a Coca Cola Scholarship winner, he was invited to join ABT’s Studio Company. He joined ABT in 2002 and rose to the rank of soloist in 2007, before joining Houston Ballet in 2014.


As a guest artist, Matthews has appeared with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet and with both the Noriko Hara Ballet and the Kamakura Ballet Company in Japan. He has toured as a guest artist with Les Ballet GranDiva. He has also appeared in the 2008 Hopes and Prize Gala in Japan. In America, he has danced with Rochester City Ballet, Civic Ballet of Chicago, Houston Repertoire Ballet, New England Dance Ensemble, West Virginia Dance Festival and the 2007 and 2008 Chicago Dancing Festival. Matthews also appeared on So You Think You Can Dance, performing the pas de deux from Don Quixote.


Matthews has taught technique and partnering classes for the David Howard Foundation’s A Month of Sundays program, West Virginia Dance Festival, at workshops in Yokohama, Japan, and at local dance studios in the United States.


Photo (top): Jared Matthews and artists of Houston Ballet perform Etudes. Photo by Amitava Sarkar. Headshot (left) by Jade Young. Images provided courtesy of Houston Ballet.