Diversity & Inclusion

Project Plié

Project Plié

In 2013, ABT launched the Project Plié initiative to further expand its diversity and inclusion efforts and bring greater awareness to the lack of racial and ethnic diversity in the classical ballet community. Through concerted outreach efforts, ABT has identified promising young dancers, dance teachers, and emerging arts administrators of color to participate in high-quality training programs.


Talent has no ethnicity and no skin color,

but it needs to be discovered and nurtured.


ABT RISE Weekend Workshops

Offered virtually this fall!

(For NYC Public School 2nd and 3rd Grade Students)

Saturday, October 24 and Sunday, October 25, 2020

ABT’s Project Plié initiative continues this fall with the ABT RISE Weekend Workshop, a special series of dance classes for 80-100 second and third grade students from the New York City Public School system which take place over the course of one weekend.   This free, two-day workshop aligns with ABT’s mission to bring classical dance to the widest possible audience by supporting students of all abilities and skill levels in their quest to engage in the performing arts.

The Workshop will be led by ABT Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (JKO) School faculty, ABT teaching artists and guest artists, who will facilitate classes in classical ballet, modern, jazz, and more!

While open to all students,  ABT RISE Weekend Workshops provide access to training for students from populations that have historically been underrepresented in classical ballet. RISE Workshop will also provide a warm and welcoming studio environment to students from all communities across New York City’s five boroughs.

ABT RISE is American Ballet Theatre’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Through programs like this Workshop, ABT is proudly and purposefully investing in accessibility – ensuring that America’s National Ballet Company® is actively working to make classical ballet available to everyone. We believe that representation and inclusion are critical to the sustainability of the ballet community, and flagship efforts, such as Project Plíe, have helped us to successfully identify young dancers, teachers, and future arts leaders from populations historically underrepresented in ballet to participate in our top-tier training programs.

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Boys & Girls Club of America Partnership

Project Plié, in partnership with Boys & Girls Club of America, introduces ballet to a broad array of children by conducting educational and activity-based master classes in member clubs across the United States.

These classes serve to identify gifted children and connect them with ABT Project Plié Partner Teachers, schools or companies in their community to receive world-class training.

In 2014, the pilot program was launched in 27 Boys & Girls Clubs across the nation. Since its inception, ABT has reached 3,500 kids in 79 Boys & Girls Clubs in 35 cities across America, and introduced these children to the magic of ballet.

Teacher Training

Project Plié is a national recruitment initiative that seeks to identify teachers of color and teachers who are committed to furthering the mission of the initiative. ABT provides scholarships for ABT’s National Training Curriculum courses and materials at our United States locations.

Teachers may elect to apply themselves, or be nominated by an already ABT Certified Teacher.

To apply for a scholarship, please submit a Scholarship Application Form, cover letter, current resume, and letter of recommendation.

To nominate a teacher, please submit a Nomination Form.

National Training CurriculumScholarship Application FormNomination Form
Photo: Rosalie O'Connor.

Administrative Internships

ABT is committed to identifying, training, and supporting emerging arts administrators from underrepresented communities.

Selected Project Plié interns will be eligible to receive a scholarship so that they may travel to and live in New York City for the duration of the internship with limited financial constraint. The scholarship may include:

  • Round trip transportation
  • Housing assistance
  • A monthly MetroCard for travel

In order to apply, students must submit the ABT Intern Application form, a resume, a cover letter indicating which administrative areas of interest, a letter of recommendation, and the Project Plié Scholarship Application form, and an essay no more than one page, answering the following question: As a person of color, why do you believe diversity is important in arts administration and why are you drawn to this field?

Apply Now

Partner Companies

To increase the dialogue about diversifying America’s ballet companies, ABT has established partnerships with professional companies around the United States that have embraced the goal of diversity.

Partner Companies collaborate on the identification and development of effective strategies for working with communities of color and create a mentoring network for professional dancers and teachers of color to share information on professional opportunities.

Current partner companies include:

Contact Us

For more information regarding Project Plié, please contact us.

Contact Us