Alan Foley, Founder and Artistic Director of Cork City Ballet, began his training with the
renowned Joan Denise Moriarty School of Dance and the Cork Ballet Company. Further training included the Harrison College of Dance and Drama in London, the Vaganova (Kirov) Ballet Summer School in Russia in 1989, the Broadway Dance Centre in New York, and classes with many distinguished teachers and dancers in Pineapple Dance Studios in London.
He has choreographed and produced all of Cork City Ballet's productions since 1992, including the hugely successful Ballet Spectacular seasons, which have toured to all the major venues in Ireland. During that time, he has worked alongside some of the most illustrious dancers of our generation including Veronika Ivanova, Sofia Gumerova and Nikita Shcheglov of the Mariinsky (Kirov) Ballet, Elena Koulagina the prima ballerina of the Perm State Ballet of Russia, and Marie Lindqvist - prima ballerina of the Royal Swedish Ballet.
As a dancer, his energy and stage presence were consistently noted by the critics in many major classical ballets such as Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Don Quixote, The Sleeping Beauty, Le Corsaire and La Bayadere among others. His versatility was also evident in the many contemporary and jazz-ballets in which he performed, including Patricia Crosbie's "Bodyguard", and in his own ballet "Gira Con Me". As a guest artist he has performed with the Irish National Youth Ballet in Dublin, the Smirnoff Fashion Awards at the Point Theatre (choreography Bunty Matthias), the IORC and the New Works Series at ICD Firkin Crane, Cork.
Television work includes "The Late Late Show", "The Arts Show", the RTE/BBC joint production of "Go For It", "Opening Nights" the BBC mini-series "The Aristocrats", RTE's "Ballet Chancers", and the operas "Aida"and "La Traviata" at the Point Theatre in Dublin.
He is the Director of the VEC Diploma in Dance course at Colaiste Stiofain Naofa, which is based at the Firkin Crane in Cork. In 1998, he was the first person in Ireland to be awarded (with distinction) the prestigious Fellowship Diploma in Classical Ballet, of the Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing in London.
In January 2005, Alan was invited to join the Board of Directors of the Irish National Youth Ballet Company, (Artistic Director: Katherine Lewis) and in November 2005, he produced and starred in the DVD "The Magic of Ballet With Alan and Monica".
November 2006 saw the launch of his book "Ballet Through The Lens - Foley and Loughman: A Portrait" with Monica Loughman.
Alan retired from the professional stage in May 2007, but continues his work as Artistic Director of Cork City Ballet; as Course Director of the VEC Diploma in Dance course at Colaiste Stiofain Naofa; and as Principal of the Alan Foley Academy of Dance.
Alan's new book "Cork City Ballet - the story so far" was launched at the Millennium Hall in Cork's City Hall on 16th September 2008 in the presence of the Deputy Lord Mayor of Cork, Councillor Patricia Gosch; the Executive Director of the Cork Opera House, Mr Gerry Barnes; and 250 invited guests.
Recent work for Cork City Ballet includes a new production of Swan Lake and Giselle with Yury Demakov from the Bolshoi Ballet.
In March 2012, he directed the Joan Denise Moriarty Centenary Gala at the Firkin Crane, which included an adaptation of her most famous ballet The Playboy of the Western World choreographed by Patricia Crosbie (with additional choreography by Alan Foley).