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Education Programs

Programs for NYC Schools

Programs for NYC Schools

Integral to the mission of American Ballet Theatre is the ambition to bring the magic of ballet to the widest possible audience through world-class performances and educational programming.

ABT is proud to offer dance and design residency programs for students of all ages and abilities. We also provide over 5,000 complimentary tickets to Spring season performances at the Metropolitan Opera House through our ticket distribution program for New York City public schools.

Please browse below for more information on program offerings.

Residency Programs

American Ballet Theatre proudly offers world-class artist-in-residency programs to schools in New York City and across the country. We serve grades K-12 with programs in dance, choreography, and design tailored to suit each school’s needs. To provide the utmost enrichment and exposure, each program includes complimentary tickets for students and chaperones to see an ABT or ABT Studio Company performance. For more information, please contact us.

Contact UsDownload Residency Menu and Price List
Dance Making Residency

Students work with an ABT Teaching Artist to learn dance concepts and apply them to a piece of ABT repertory, or to a curricular theme chosen collaboratively by the school and ABT. This program requires a minimum of two sessions. A residency of five or more sessions allows for the program to culminate with a student showing for peers.

Choreographic Residency

Students work with an ABT Teaching Artist to learn choreographic techniques and processes and apply them to a piece of ABT repertory, or to a theme chosen collaboratively by the school and ABT. These residencies encourage creative problem solving in small group settings and the development of dance literacy, as students work to master their own interpretations of the chosen ballet or material. This residency requires a minimum of five sessions.

Design Residency

Students work with an ABT Design Teaching Artist to explore costumes and/or scenic design elements specific to a chosen performance. Design concepts will be linked to the performance students attend, though the designs themselves will be informed by each school’s needs. This program is ideal for schools looking to enhance their existing dance or drama program, or as an addendum to an ABT Dance Residency. The Design Residency requires a minimum of two sessions.

Ticket Distribution

Each year, ABT distributes thousands of complimentary tickets to New York City public schools for use by their students and families. These tickets are distributed free of charge to schools enrolled in our programs. Requests are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

As your school requests, receives, and efficiently uses complimentary tickets, you will have the opportunity to earn rewards such as tickets for school staff to see an ABT dress rehearsal, complimentary access to professional development sessions, and free Teaching Artist visits to your school!

Application Form
Eligibility & How to Enroll

All New York metropolitan area schools are eligible to apply for this program, with preference given to schools in NYC’s five boroughs.

To enroll, complete the above application form and designate a responsive Primary Contact/Program Coordinator who will serve as a liaison between your school and American Ballet Theatre. After completing the application form, please have your Principal and the Primary Contact sign and return the completed application form. If the Principal is also acting as the Primary Contact, please fill in his/her name for both fields.

Program Benefits

Schools enrolled in this program will receive seasonal invitations to request up to 100 complimentary tickets to American Ballet Theatre performances, as allowed by our Ticket Distribution Structure below. Invitations for the Spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House will be sent to all enrolled schools in March.

Participating in this program builds a relationship between ABT and your school. Schools successfully participating in our Ticket Distribution program will receive first notice of all contests and performance opportunities for New York area schools and will be the first schools to be considered for grant-funded, in-school residencies.

By submitting the application, the school is agreeing to adhere to the program’s Rules and Regulations below. We look forward to your participation and hope to see you soon at the ballet!

Rules & Regulations

Responsibilities of School

  • Principal must provide knowledge and support of partnership and assign a Program Coordinator who has appropriate time and position to manage the program.
  • The designated Program Coordinator must provide effective communication between the principal, faculty, parents, and American Ballet Theatre.
  • In order to maintain or advance their Tier, as described in the Distribution Structure below, we require that schools make every effort to ensure that all requested tickets are used.
  • Schools agree to utilize all requested tickets. If there are tickets that will not be utilized, the school must notify ABT in a timely manner.
  • Schools must provide an adequate number of chaperones during all visits to the ballet.

Ticket Distribution Guidelines

There are many ways to successfully distribute tickets to your school. Below are a few suggestions:

  • A teacher can distribute the allotted tickets to his/her class. The school provides buses and teacher chaperones.
  • Tickets may be distributed to arts-based classes.
  • Tickets can be distributed directly to families; one ticket for the student and one for a parent. However, there must be a school representative at the performance.
  • One parent may act as a chaperone for several students whose parents are unable to attend. We suggest no more than five children per parent.

ABT Policies

  • In order to successfully enroll in the program, schools must sign and return the Application Form.
  • Schools that do not fully comply with their responsibilities will be placed on conditional status, and may be moved to seats in a lower tier (see Distribution Structure below).
  • A second offense will result in the removal of the school from the ABT Ticket Distribution program.
Ticket Distribution Structure

Upon initial enrollment, schools are placed in Tier 3. Complimentary TA visits can be used to offset costs of residency programs.

Tier 1+ (890 Club) Tier 1 Tier 2 Tier 3 Tier 4
Requirements to maintain tier (% tickets used). Use more tickets to advance tiers. 85-100% 76-84% 51-75% 26-50% 0-25%
Maximum number of tickets offered per request 100 100 50 25 0
Membership to the 890 Club X
Listing on ABT’s website as a member of the 890 Club X
*One complimentary Teaching Artist visit to your school X
Priority Seating X X
Invitation to special events and studio visits at ABT’s 890 Broadway studios X X
Invitation to ABT dress rehearsal for up to 4 teachers X X X
Optional professional development opportunities X X X X
Purchase additional tickets at discounted prices (Max 25) X X X X
**Mandatory professional development attendance X

*Minimum requirement: school must take at least 75 tickets and use 85+% of them.

**Mandatory for Tier 4 schools to regain ticketing privileges after a one season probation period.

Contact Us

For more information regarding any of our Programs for NYC Schools, please contact us.

Contact Us