The Joffrey Ballet’s Lemonis Bridge Program is designed to introduce students from Chicago Public Schools to the basic elements of classical ballet ultimately finding and training the next generation of dancers. This program provides first and second grade students with a highly structured dance experience where they will develop life skills, creativity and physical awareness. The Joffrey Ballet is committed to providing the highest level of classical dance instruction to Chicago’s youth, thereby teaching students about the concept of pursuing dance as a career when they otherwise would not have had this exposure.
The program is structured in four phases. During Phase I, students receive ballet instruction at their schools from Joffrey Teaching Artists. Select students are invited to participate in Phase II classes that take place at Joffrey Tower on Saturdays. Throughout Phase III, students participate in a four-week summer intensive with four hours of dance classes each day. Students that demonstrate excellent attendance, behavior, and progress are awarded scholarships to continue studying at the Joffrey Academy of Dance, Official School of The Joffrey Ballet, in the final phase of the program. .
“Nothing is closer to my heart than a young person who finds a means of expression through dance. In many ways, that was my story, too.” -Ashley Wheater, Artistic Director of The Joffrey Ballet
Phase II Final Presentation Center Work 2014
Phase II Final Presentation-"Frozen"-2014
Bridge Program Final Presentation: Girls (May 2013)
Bridge Program Final Presentation: Boys (May 2013)
Community Engagement in ABC News (February 2013)
Director of Community Engagement, Pierre Lockett is interviewed on ABC News.
Bridge Program - In the news - ABC (February 2011)