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Kathryn Karrh Cashin Performance Excellence Fund

Our long-time Resident Choreographer Kathryn Karrh Cashin (KK) passed away surrounded by love on Thursday, June 15, 2023.

To continue KK’s legacy, TTB has established the Kathryn Karrh Cashin Performance Excellence Fund in her honor. The Fund assists in setting new and existing productions — hiring professional performers, commissioning collaborators, and most notably, ensuring live music is a vital part of TTB’s productions. KK’s biggest dream for our productions was for live music to be performed at every performance. For example, in 2014, she commissioned John Longstaff to arrange a reduced score of Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty, for the Company’s use. KK looked forward to bringing this production back to Ruby Diamond Auditorium on May 11 & 12, 2024. To contribute to the Fund, go to Donors will be recognized in the 2023 Nutcracker playbill.

KK Cashin

About Kathryn Karrh Cashin (KK)

KK was a beloved former dancer of The Tallahassee Ballet (TTB) and long-time Resident Choreographer, best known for the brilliant choreography of our production of The Nutcracker. Her commitment to TTB was beyond reproach and her kindness had no bounds. She mentored generations of dancers, positively influencing their individual talents and life skills within ballet and beyond.

KK first joined the Company as a dancer when it was called The Tallahassee Civic Ballet in 1978 under the direction of Nancy Carroll Abbey. She danced many featured roles including “Arabian” and “Snow Queen” in The Nutcracker and “Odette” in Swan Lake.

In the 1980s, Cashin joined Joyce (Straub) Fausone, taking over leadership of the Company. Cashin choreographed many scenes in the Company’s first full-length production of The Nutcracker in 1986, adding choreography over the next almost 40 years evolving to the production seen today.

A prolific choreographer, KK never stopped giving of her time and talents to The Tallahassee Ballet. In addition to The Nutcracker, KK is known for numerous chamber works, most notably Boléro. Her full-length ballets include Beauty and the Beast, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Coppélia, Cinderella, and The Sleeping Beauty. She also choreographed several children’s ballets and shared her artistry with Florida State Opera, choreographing over 20 works, including The Mikado, Eugene Onegin, Orpheus in the Underworld, and Romeo and Juliet. 

KK taught outside of the dance studio, as an associate teaching professor at Florida State University’s Program in Interdisciplinary Humanities – from where she recently retired.  She held a Bachelor of Arts degree in Russian/Business Administration, a Master of Arts degree in Slavic and East European Studies, and a PhD in Humanities. A servant leader, she was president of the Junior League of Tallahassee, a graduate of Leadership Tallahassee, a member of the Leadership Council of FSU’s College of Arts and Sciences, a former curriculum and steering chair for Youth Leadership Tallahassee, and vice-president of scholarships for Alpha Delta Pi National Foundation. Just this year, KK was celebrated by Young Actors Theatre as a “Leading Lady,” honoring women in Tallahassee who go above and beyond by donating their time and efforts to good causes in our community. 


The Tallahassee Ballet will always be indebted to the countless hours, creative passion, high standards, and unwavering support of Dr. Kathryn Karrh Cashin. With kindness and respect, she held high expectations, which always made dancers better. When you got a nod of approval from KK, you knew you did something right. Her dedication and talent will never be forgotten.

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