American Ballet Theatre’s diversity initiative Project Plié and Boys & Girls Clubs of America continues a master class series introducing ballet to a broad array of children with educational and activity-based master classes in member clubs across the United States. These hour-long classes, conducted by ABT Certified Teachers, serve to identify gifted children and connect them with ABT Certified Project Plié Partner teachers and schools in their communities. In 2014, the pilot program was launched in 27 Boys & Girls Clubs across the nation. Over 500 students nationwide attended the master classes and 15 were selected to receive scholarships to begin their ballet training at the represented dance schools in their respective communities.
Classes for the 2015 season have been held in Orlando, FL, Hempstead, NY, Edinburg, TX and Birmingham, AL. A total of 30 master classes are scheduled in clubs across the country through October 2015. Upcoming locations and dates for the master class series include Huntington, WV on August 7, Brooklyn, NY on August 10 and 11, Mt. Kisco, NY on August 11, Easton, PA on August 12, Dallas, TX on September 2 and San Antonio, TX on September 11 and 18.
Launched in September 2013, Project Plié is a comprehensive initiative to increase racial and ethnic representation in ballet and to diversify America’s ballet companies. Project Plié seeks to combine training and support of ballet students and dance teachers from communities previously underrepresented in American ballet companies with the creation of a nationwide partner network of professional ballet companies who are committed to diversity.
Support for the Project Plié initiative has been provided by Payless ShoeSource®, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the Ford Foundation.
For information on Project Plié, please visit www.abt.org/education/projectplie/.