Kara Medoff Barnett, Executive Director at American Ballet Theatre

Kara Medoff Barnett has been described as optimistic, tenacious, and innovative. It is only fitting that one of her favorite things in the world is the balcony pas de deux in Kenneth MacMillan’s Romeo and Juliet.

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A novel that you recommend to all your friends? 

Jane Eyre. Little Women.

A hobby you’ve had since you can remember? 

Duke basketball. I remember crying inconsolably when the Blue Devils lost to Louisville (in the NCAA championship) in 1986.

Who is your favorite old Hollywood movie star? 

Audrey Hepburn. She wanted to be a ballerina, but World War II rendered that dream impossible. She reinvented herself and channeled her talent into a brilliant career on stage and on screen. And through it all, she cared for her family and for strangers, raising her own children and fundraising for children worldwide through UNICEF. I admire her optimism, her ebullience, and her empathy.

Favorite hostess gift to bring to a party? 

If the hosts have kids, I bring Lego sets of famous architectural landmarks (Sydney Opera House, Eiffel Tower, Chrysler Building, etc.). 

Your favorite home-cooked meal?

I’m at the theater most nights during the week, so Sunday brunch is my thing. My favorite? Sunday brunch tailgate before a 1pm New York Giants football game: spinach-egg casserole and French toast casserole, with Bloody Marys for the grownups and hot chocolate for the kids. 

Favorite comfort food? 

Chocolate chip cookies, especially my sister Gena’s secret recipe. And cheese fondue (my grandmother was Swiss!).

What is your secret pleasure Instagram account to follow? 

@ABTOfficial.  @ABTStudioCompany. @ABTSchool. They feature BTS windows into the rigorous training (and camaraderie and shenanigans) of the amazing artist-athletes of ABT!

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