Bené Arnold

Distinguished Professor Emeritus

Bené received her B.F.A. and M.F.A. from the Department of Ballet, and her B.S. in elementary education and Masters of Education in special education (teaching the deaf as her specialty) from the University of Utah.

In 1963 Bené was asked by Willam F. Christensen to be the ballet mistress for the future company, Ballet West. She served in this capacity until 1975 when she joined the University of Utah Department of Ballet faculty.

In 1985 Bené created the role of Fatme, in Abdallah, an August Bournonville ballet. This began her career as a guest artist in various character roles with Ballet West. For many years she was the rehearsal assistant for the young dancers in the Ballet West Nutcracker.

In 1984 Bené received a citation from the Utah State Senate recognizing her contribution through ballet to the state. In 1997 she received the Chamber of Commerce Award in the Arts and the Governor’s Award in the Arts. She served on the NEA dance panel in 2007. In 1998 Bené was the first woman and only faculty member from Fine Arts and Humanities to be named Distinguished Professor. In 2001, Bené received recognition for her teaching as the KSL Teacher of the Month. When Bené retired from the University of Utah she was named Distinguished Professor Emerita. Bené willingly answered the call when asked to return to the University of Utah and in 2008 became Interim Chair of the Department of Ballet.