Founding Artistic Director
A native Victorian, Ms. Busby began her early training with Lillian Cain Cox. After graduation from Victoria High School with highest honors, she attended the University of Oklahoma as a dance major studying with Miguel Terekhov, Yvonne Choutou and Helen Gregory. At OU, she was a member of the Orchesis dance Group and was a soloist with the Mary Kay Price Dance Company. In 1973, she graduated magna cum laude from the University of Houston with a B.A. Degree. While in Houston, she performed as a soloist in numerous dance department productions. From 1970 to 1974, she danced as a member of Discovery Dance Group under the direction of Camille Long Hill. Mrs. Busby also attended Texas Women’s University as a graduate student in dance and related arts. From 1974 to 1979, she taught modern dance at Victoria College and then opened her dance studio in the fall of 1979. Ms. Busby has choreographed numerous musical for high schools, college and civic groups including “Fiddler on the Roof”, “Music Man”, and “The King and I”. Her civic involvements have included membership in Sandaphon Study Club, The Junior League of Victoria, and the Victoria Summer Musical Repertory Company. She was selected as one of the Outstanding Young Women of America in 1983. Other positions include dance panel member of the Texas Commission of the Arts, advisory board of Hopkins Fine Arts Magnet School and parliamentarian and membership Chairman of Regional Dance America/SW. Ms. Busby is an American Ballet Theatre Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT Teacher Training Intensive in Primary though Level 5 for the ABT National Training Curriculum.
In 1984, Ms. Busby co-founded and has served as Artistic Director of Victoria Ballet Theatre. Under her leadership, the company grew in size and artistry bringing both classics and original ballets to our community in addition to providing various outreach opportunities. Debbe Busby and Victoria Ballet Theatre were awarded “Stream Award “at the Regional Dance America/Southwest Festival in 2010. This recognition is an annual award selected by committee in recognition of one Dance Company within the organization who has displayed the highest artistic excellence and greatest service to Regional Dance America/Southwest in the past year. Ms. Busby is married to husband Jim and they are parents to three grown children, Heather, Jared and Shannon.
Assistant Artistic Director
Kelli began her ballet training in Michigan under Evelyn Kreason. Upon moving to Dallas, she furthered her dance training with Kathy Chamberlain. She has studied with leading academies upon acceptance at the following: School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, and Melissa Hayden in New York. Kelli holds a BFA in dance from the University of Oklahoma. She danced professionally with Dallas Ballet under the direction of Flemming Flint and Bryan Pitts. Kelli later moved to the Victoria area and is currently VBT’s Assistant Artistic Director & Company Manager. She is the proud mother of two daughters and a son; Laura, Madeline and Matthew.
Social Media Director
Kennedy Velasquez joined Victoria Ballet Theatre at the age of 9 were she has participated in productions of “Fall for Dance,” “The Nutcracker,” and “Spring Gala,”. Now, at the age of 21 she works with the company as an emerging choreographer and VBT's “Social Media Director”. She has attended four Regional Dance America (RDA) Southwest Festivals and two (RDA) national festivals in Montreal, Canada and Phoenix, Arizona. Kennedy has choreographed three pieces for VBT tilted “The Light Within,” which was performed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, “Compelling Urgency,” “Swarming Compulsions,” which was performed in Dallas, Texas and a recent piece “Clarity.” Kennedy also received a full scholarship to attend National Choreography Intensive (NCI) in Tallahassee, Florida in 2017 and in Huntsville, Texas at Sam Houston State University in 2019 where she was able to learn and work with world renowned dance teachers and choreographers. Kennedy graduated top 15 percent from Victoria East High School in 2017, and she is currently attending Victoria College to pursue a degree in graphic and web design.
Since 1984, Jim has been a constant presence behind the scenes at every Victoria Ballet Theatre production. His duties have included executing lighting plots, set design, logistics and stage crew coordination. As a charter member of the Board of Trustees for VBT, he has served in many capacities including Board Chairman and treasurer. His dedication and commitment to the growth and stability of the company has been instrumental in the ongoing quality of productions presented.
Brenda Serrata Tally
Brenda Tally holds an M.F.A in dance perBrenda Tally holds an M.F.A in dance performance from the University of Iowa and a B.F.A. in modern dance from the University of Utah. She began her early training in Victoria, Texas with Debbe Busby and continued here as a member of Victoria Ballet Theatre from 1984 to 1993. She has done summer study at the Houston Ballet Academy, Joffrey Workshop TX, and Alvin Ailey American Dancenter. In Utah, Brenda also dabbled in musical theater at Robert Redford’s Sundance Theatre in their production of West Side Story. She has been on the faculty for the Joffrey Workshop TX for ten years. Brenda has twice received the Monticello Foundation Scholarship and the Natalie Skelton awards for choreography from Regional Dance America. At the University of Iowa she was a Dean’s Graduate Fellow, danced as a member of Dancers In Company and her choreographic work “Habitual Ritual” was chosen to represent the university at the American College Dance Festival. She has performed with modern dance companies Duarte Dance Works, Kayle+Co, and Charlotte Adams & Dancers at the Joyce SOHO and Dance Theatre Workshop in New York City. Brenda currently teaches dance at Busby Dancenter and is an American Ballet Theatre® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher Training Intensive in Primary through Level 3 for the ABT® National Training Curriculum. She is the proud wife of Victoria West Soccer Coach Bill Tally and mother of Billy.
Phoebe Schneider is Victoria Ballet Theatre’s Administrative Assistant. After joining VBT at the age of 12 she participated in many shows, including “Fall for Dance,” “The Nutcracker,” and “Spring Gala” over the years. She has also attended four Regional Dance America (RDA) Southwest Festivals and one RDA National Festival. In 2018, Phoebe graduated as a homeschool student and is now attending University of Houston - Victoria, in order to get her Teacher’s Certificate in Physical Education.