In 2003, the Jacob's Pillow property was declared a National Historic Landmark District by the federal government as "an exceptional cultural venue that holds value for all Americans." It is the only dance entity in the U. Pillow founder Ted Shawn was instrumental in beginning the careers of Martha Graham and Jack Cole, and the Pillow has continued this mentoring role in the careers of artists such as Alvin Ailey, José Limón, and Mark Morris. World premieres have been commissioned from choreographers such as Merce Cunningham and Paul Taylor, and artists such as Margot Fonteyn and Mikhail Baryshnikov have been showcased in works.Companies such as Dance Theatre of Harlem, the Parsons Dance Company, and Trey Mc Intyre Project made their debuts at the Pillow, and international groups such as The Royal Danish Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theatre, Black Grace and Hofesh Shechter Company have made their U. Performances at Jacob's Pillow take place on three stages.
Exhibits are free and open to the general public, as are The Archives, which offer the opportunity to view videos, read books, access the Pillow's computer catalog, or view The Pillow's permanent collections of programs and photographs.
Free historical walking tours are available to the public weekly during the summer.
The School at Jacob's Pillow is known for its faculty.
Faculty of The School at Jacob’s Pillow have included Susan Jaffe, Amanda Mc Kerrow, Chet Walker, Nikolaj Hubbe, Anna-Marie Holmes, Milton Myers, Katherine Dunham, Rennie Harris, Matt Mattox, Soledad Barrio, Tim Rushton, Finis Jhung, Martin Santangelo, Mercedes Ellington, Stephanie Saland, Victor Plotnikov, Annie-B Parson, Paul Lazar, Aszure Barton, Helen Pickett, Banu Ogan, Mr.
The School at Jacob's Pillow’s conservatory-style curriculum includes five programs: Ballet, Cultural Traditions, Contemporary Traditions, Jazz/Musical Theater, and Choreographers’ Lab.
The dancers’ schedule includes six days each week with four professional-level studio classes each day, coaching sessions, weekly performances for the public, master classes with Festival artists, talks led by Scholars-in-Residence, study assignments in the Pillow’s rare and extensive Archives, and attendance at all Festival performances and events.Talks by Pillow Scholars-in-Residence take place before every performance in these two theaters.Additionally, Post-Show Talks happen in the Ted Shawn Theatre on Thursdays and in the Doris Duke Studio Theatre on Fridays, giving audiences an opportunity to engage with artists in moderated Q&A sessions.In 1940 he leased the property to dance teacher Mary Washington Ball, but her summer festival was also not financially successful.British ballet stars Alicia Markova and Anton Dolin learned of Shawn's financial difficulties, and decided to acquire the property.The third stage is Inside/Out, which presents free performances of established and emerging artists from all over the world in an informal, outdoor venue set against a panoramic vista of the Berkshire hills.