"Pointe to Succeed is special in that it's not a one-time visit,
but an ongoing partnership with schools"
CiCi Houston, Director of Education and Outreach
Pointe to Succeed
Leading Program Sponsor: Heartland Coca-Cola
Pointe to Succeed was launched by Saint Louis Ballet in 2016 with the goal of bringing the joy, wonder and discipline of ballet to underserved students in the St. Louis region. Recognizing that the art of ballet should be accessible to all interested families regardless of their financial circumstances, Saint Louis Ballet is committed to growing this initiative as an integral part of its programming.
Principles of Pointe to Succeed:
A Worthy Investment: SLB specifically looks to serve schools that have an underserved student population. Many of the students we work with come from challenging situations, and they receive careful nurturing and counseling while in our care. We are committed to providing a longer-term experience, and to that end we offer scholarships to students who have the interest in pursuing further training once the program at their school concludes.
Connecting and Mentoring: Research shows that students learn more easily when they feel connected to their teachers and safe in their environment. The arts provide a wonderful avenue for developing social-emotional skills because of the strong emphasis on teacher-student relationships. Students learn about the world of ballet by developing connections with professional dancers, and the use of storytelling, interactive seminars and hands-on activities are designed to provide a variety of ways for children to connect.
Live Performance Experience: The program provides funds for transportation to the Touhill Performing Arts Center and tickets to attend a full length classical ballet, produced by SLB Company. Students are given an introduction in theater etiquette and how to follow a story ballet. After the performance they enjoy a backstage tour, which provides an up-close look at set design, costumes, dancer’s stage makeup, special effects, and more.
Talent Development: Saint Louis Ballet dancers teach after school classes to students for six weeks following the live performance. Some of these students continue on scholarship at the Saint Louis Ballet School, where they receive weekly ballet classes and support.
Please contact Education Manager CiCi Houston if you are interested in finding out more about Pointe to Succeed: firstname.lastname@example.org
Saint Louis Ballet (SLB) is on an incredible journey to become one of the region’s preeminent institutions for the creation and presentation of classical and contemporary ballet. As part of this vision, we invest significant resources into educating both the next generation of dancers and future patrons of the arts through our ballet school and our introductory public performances. To further this reach, we were proud to announce our education initiative for the St. Louis community in the Fall of 2015: Pointe to Succeed—offered free of cost to participating schools—will promote the art of ballet with a 3-pronged approach, featuring: ballet education, audience development, and talent development.
After-School Classes: Objectives in these classes include the following:
Character building - Life skills such as etiquette, focus, and memorization skills are taught.
Exercise – Ballet training builds strength, flexibility, coordination, and stamina.
Language – Students learn ballet vocabulary both in French and the English translations
Arts integration – Ballet exercises are augmented with the introduction of pantomime (acting through facial expression and body language), ballet stories, and introduction of costume and set design through coloring pages.
Wellness – Students are given a “wellness tip of the day” to establish an idea of taking ownership over their well-being. Examples include sleep, drinking lots of water, and taking their studies seriously.
Role Models – “Dancer and YouTube clip of the Week” encourages them to follow exemplary dancers such as Misty Copeland and Michaela DePrince, giving them heroes and role models. This experience is heightened by their interactions with the dancers of Saint Louis Ballet, which includes Q&A opportunities and backstage tours.
1 of 3 scholarship recipients receiving free classical ballet training at St. Louis Ballet School after having been exposed to ballet through Saint Louis Ballet's Pointe To Succeed Program in 2016.