2024 Children’s Division Fall Registration Open

2024 Children’s Division Fall Registration Open

New Haven Ballet has announced that registration for its 2024 Children’s Division Fall Semester has opened. Classes are offered at studios in New Haven, Hamden, Bethany, and Branford starting on August 26, 2024.

The Gentle Syllabus

The Children’s Division is a special segment of the school that caters to young students ages 3 through 2nd grade. According to Artistic Director Lisa Kim Sanborn, what sets the program apart is that “[w]e begin training by using our gentle approach syllabus, which introduces our youngest dancers to the joys of music and movement through a system that gradually adds structure as students mature.” Sanborn adds, “Classes are filled with laughter and held in spacious, sunny, state-of-the-art studios by the region’s best instructors. Dancers in Creative Ballet and higher are also invited to audition and perform in our large productions at the Shubert Theatre in New Haven.”

Sanborn refers to the carefully constructed syllabus she created, which was later supplemented by Children’s Division Director Timothy Fountain. The syllabus uses age-appropriate exercises and stretches while gently introducing students to classical dance and musical tenets. For example, in First Steps, students in 3-K pre-kindergarten use their creativity to learn the fundamentals of musicality, while in 4-K pre-kindergarten and Kindergarten, students participate in Creative Ballet, focusing on motor skill development and musical awareness. Pre-ballet students are in 1st grade, and Primary students are in 2nd grade. These students begin formalized classical ballet training and learn more advanced vocabulary and movement.

Students who successfully complete New Haven Ballet’s Children’s Division enter the Student Division ready to join Level 1, where they continue building a clean classical foundation. As the standard for classical ballet training for over thirty-five years throughout greater New Haven, the school is known for producing dancers with excellent technique and beautiful artistry.

But the journey doesn’t end with classes. Dancers in Creative Ballet and higher are not just learning; they perform. Dancers in 4-K pre-kindergarten and older are invited to audition and showcase their skills in New Haven Ballet’s large productions at the prestigious Shubert Theatre in New Haven. The next grand performance will be The Nutcracker, starring guest artists from New York City Ballet.

Parents often enroll children to participate in the arts because they wish to support better academic achievement and the gain of critical skills for their children. These skills might include discipline, fine motor skills, physical strength, critical thinking, coordination, and confidence. However, according to Sanborn, the best reason to join is because “New Haven Ballet’s trained instructors teach using our highly sought-after gentle approach, allowing children to build these skills without them knowing. Over time, students acquire the foundation for a beautiful classical technique and embrace discipline, learn to listen and follow instructions, and the rigors ballet presents. And they make friendships and memories that last a lifetime, too.”

New Haven Ballet is at www.newhavenballet.org. For more information about classes, call 203-782-9038 or email administrator@newhavenballet.org.

About New Haven Ballet

New Haven Ballet is led by Artistic Director Lisa Kim Sanborn and Children’s Division Director Timothy Fountain. As a community-based ballet school in New Haven, Connecticut, it offers dance classes in state-of-the-art studios to dancers ages 3 to adult. Regarded as the standard for classical ballet training throughout Greater New Haven, this 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization offers classes to the Children’s Division at studios in New Haven, Bethany, Hamden, and Branford. In addition to performances, New Haven Ballet’s outreach programs, including DanceAIR, which offers free training to New Haven Public School children in traditionally underserved communities, and Shared Ability, which provides weekly dance workshops to disabled artists, are made possible through the generosity of Stonesthrow Fund, Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, City of New Haven Creative Arts Advancement Program, Anna Fitch Ardenghi Trust, State of Connecticut Office of the Arts, the Jordan Fund, NewAlliance Foundation, Ethel & Abe Lapides Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Bank of America, City of New Haven Creative Sector Relief Fund, the Zayas Law Fund, and the Branford Community Foundation.


Photo: (c) 2024 Kelsey Paff Photography. If you want more information about New Haven Ballet, please call  203-782-9038 or email administrator@newhavenballet.org.


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To provide the greater New Haven Community with exceptional classical ballet training, performances, and outreach programs, that nurture appreciation of ballet and foster the joy of dance.

On October 31, 2020, NHB’s Board of Directors adopted the following Diversity and Inclusion Statement:

New Haven Ballet celebrates those who aspire to excellence in classical ballet. A culture of creativity is the core of our work and diversity promotes innovation. The arts can provide powerful life-changing experiences that prepare students and impact audiences to lead more successful, meaningful and culturally rich lives. The arts can also prove to be an important platform for social change. At New Haven Ballet we are passionate about creating an inclusive dance environment and performances that promote and value diversity and inclusion. We will continue to strive to increase diversity in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, and perspective, which will improve and strengthen our work.

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