Raymond Van Masonis an independent choreographer and master teacher, as well as the Artistic Director of Imagine Ballet Theatre.
He was a Principal Artist with Ballet West (Salt Lake City, Utah) where he danced many leading roles such as Swan Lake, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty.He has dance main roles in many others such as Smuin’s Romeo and Juliet, Stevenson’s Cinderella, Caniparoli’s Ophelia, White Mourning and Ladies of the Camellias, Prokovsky’s Anna Karenina, Hynd’s Rosalinda.
He also danced many contemporary favorites such as Canfield’s Equinox, Taylor’s Company B, Mark’s Lark Ascending, Butler’s Carmina Burana, as well as many, many other ballets.
While with Ballet West he toured throughout the United States and performed at The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
He has danced as a guest artist with:
The Stars of the San Francisco Ballet in Marseille, France
The Charleston Ballet
The National Society of Arts and Letters 50th Anniversary Celebration
Numerous arts festivals
photo: Lark Ascending Ballet West Choreography
His choreographic credits include four world premiere ballets for Ballet West – Seasons, Lady Guinevere, Transparencies and Desert as a Rose, commissioned for the Utah state centennial celebration.
In 1998, Mason was invited to choreograph for Ballet Pacifica’s Choreographic Project and in 1999, he was asked to join Ballet Pacifica as Ballet Master, Teacher, Choreographer and Dancer. While with ballet Pacifica he choreographed two works - Reverie and Moonlight, which was filmed by Lloyd Rigler Foundation for Broadcast on the Classic Arts Showcase for PBS and some cable networks.
Mason has choreographed for Utah Opera Company’s Productions of Romeo & Juliet and La Traviata.
His choreography has been selected by New Choreographers On Pointe for “Ballet Builders, A showcase in New York City” in 1998 and 1994. For Ballet builders he presented his ballet Moonlight (1998) and his “Fall” pas de duex from his ballet Seasons (1994).
Mason created Pilgrimage: A Liturgical Ballet (1993) and Requiem: A Liturgical Ballet (1990) works which were commissioned for The Cathedral of the Madeleine Festival of the Arts in Salt Lake City, Utah.
He has choreographed works for Utah Ballet (Salt Lake City): Chameleon, Carmina Burana and Symphony #7.
Additional works have been created for Ballet Etudes with the Phoenix Symphony, Les Ballet GranDiva, Abilene Texas Christian University – as well as others.
In 2003, he choreographed Hoop Dreams for Les Ballet GranDiva as part of their Japan tour.
Mason has choreographed three full length ballets which include: Secret Garden to an original score by Kurt Bestor. Nutcracker and Alice: Adventures in Wonderland.
In 2007 he was commissioned and created “Sacred Dances” for the Madeline Festival of the Arts in Salt Lake City.
Mason continues to create numerous works for Imagine Ballet Theatre – Pillow Party, The Three Graces, Waltz Poems and more . . . as well as works for other ballet companies.
2003-Present: Artistic Director of IBT, Choreographer, Master Teacher, Guest Artist
2004 – 2006: Adjunct faculty in Ballet at Weber State University, Ogden, Utah
2000-2005: Principal Dancer; LesBallet GranDiva, Victor Trevino, Artistic Director
1999: Ballet Mster, Dancer; Ballet Pacifica, Molly Lynch, Artistic Director
1997-1998: Principal Dancer; Ballet West, Jonas Kage, Artistic Director
1989-1997: Principal Dancer; Ballet West, John Hart, Artistic Director
1987-1989: Soloist; Ballet West, John Hart , Artistic Director
1985-1987: Corps de Ballet; Ballet West, John Hart, Artistic Director
1983-1985: Corps de Ballet; Ballet West, Bruce Marks, Artistic Director
1982-1983: Utah Ballet; Bene Arnold, Artistic Director
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Ballet, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
Utah Best of State Award, 2004, in category of Individual Dancer
Utah Artists Grants
Past President of University of Utah Fine Arts Alumni Board