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From Student to Professional

About the Trainee Program


SLB invites students to audition for the Professional Training Program.  The program is intended to help post graduate students transition from student to professional dancer. The Professional Training Program is a program for ages 18-22 that concentrates on strengthening technique and developing artistry through a full-day, 35-week, comprehensive program. The Professional Training Program includes technique, pointe, variations, adagio, contemporary, and seminars and conferences on such topics as nutrition, personal safety, and life skills.


Performing Experience

  • Company Rehearsals: Professional Training Program students may be called to SLB Company rehearsals. If called, students are expected to attend all scheduled rehearsals, whether or not they are cast to perform. The School office must be notified if rehearsals conflict with School classes. Professional Training Program dress code is required in rehearsals.\\

  • Company Performances: Professional Training Program students perform in “The Nutcracker”, additional full-length ballets, and at least one new works program or repertoire program.

Tuition for Professional Division 24-25:

  • $350/month (9 months of the year)
    Tuition rates subject to change pending submission year

Age Requirements: 18–22

Scholarships & Financial Aid

A limited number of partial scholarships are available and are awarded on the basis of financial need, class performance and potential for a professional career. Scholarships are granted for no longer than one academic year.
To apply click here.

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More than just classes and performances

Student Conferences

Conferences with Artistic Director and Rehearsal Directors are held in the winter to discuss student progress, options for summer programs, the following school year, and audition tour plans.

Pilates & Strength Training

Take up SPACE as you flow through Dance & Pilates movement patterns to ALIGN the body. This is an injury prevention class designed to strengthen & stabilize the abdominals while increasing flexibility & promoting long, lean muscles. Classes will finish with a Sound Bath Meditation infused with Reiki ENERGY to revitalize the soul.

Career Planning

SLB is committed to providing as many career planning resources and job placement opportunities as possible to Professional Division students. A resume workshop/audition seminar is held in early December to help students begin the process of writing a resume and searching for a job in the dance field. Photographer contacts for audition portfolios are available to students, as well as an annual directory which provides extensive information on approximately 40 ballet companies in the United States, a useful resource in planning auditions. Individual counseling and advice on careers in dance and/or college dance programs are also provided.

(Offsite company auditions: Absences for company auditions outside of SLB must receive prior approval from the Artistic office before any travel arrangements are made.)


General Schedule


Class Schedule

  • Mon-Fr - 12:00 - 1:30: Ballet, 1:45 - 2:30 or 2:45: Pointe, Variations, Contemporary, Pilates, Partnering, or Rehearsal*

  • Saturday: 11:15 - 12:45 - Ballet, 1:00 - 1:45 - Pointe or Variations
    *Rehearsal may go later, as designated in PTP Information Package




Gen Horiuchi

Executive and Artistic Director


Louise Nadeau

Ballet Instructor
Former Principal of Pacific Northwest Ballet


Ellen Costanza

Ballet Instructor
Former Principal of Cleveland Ballet


CiCi Houston Sudholt

Ballet InstructorRehearsal Director for SLB


Lisa Wolfsberger

Ballet Instructor

A founding Company Member of Saint Louis Ballet


Christine Settembrino

Ballet InstructorAssistant Rehearsal Director for SLB


Christine Knoblauch O'Neal

Ballet Instructor
Retired Professor of the Practice in Dance

Former ABT Dancer


Michael Burke

Contemporary & Ballet Instructor

SLB Company Member


Donna Patzius

Ballet Instructor

Former Ballet Met Dancer


Shelby Glidden


Recent alumni from the Professional Training Program and SLB School have gone on to the following companies and colleges:

Huntsville Ballet, Kansas City Ballet Trainee, Saint Louis Ballet, Ballet Chicago, Charlotte Ballet 2, Milwaukee Ballet Trainee, Minnesota Ballet Apprenticeship, Montgomery Ballet, Ballet Frontier, UMKC, Webster University, Ballet Met 2, Indiana University, Oklahoma University, University of Utah, Texas Christian UniversityAvant Chamber Ballet, Lexington Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Graduate Program, Ballet Des Moines


Professional Training Program students are responsible for making their own housing arrangements during the school year, as SLB School does not have year-round housing available. Students often choose to live with a roommate; most roommate situations are established before the end of the summer. Many students have recommended searching online at to find prospective apartments in the vicinity of Saint Louis Ballet School.


For Students ACCEPTED into the Professional Training Division

for Fall 2024-2025:

Click "Register" below to complete your official registration into the program

All registrations will be reviewed before deposits are charged.
If you have not received an acceptance from SLB into the Professional Training Program, please do not use this registration.


Professional Training Student Resources:

Download the below PDF which includes dress code information, program calendar, local neighborhood information, local college and university information, and local health care facilities. All very helpful information especially to those relocating to St. Louis for this program.


If you have further questions please contact CiCi Houston at

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