Ballet RI has been engaging Southern New England for over 40 years in programming designed to introduce schools and communities to the art of ballet, bringing ballet into new and uncommon places. Reaching an average of 13,000 youth each year, engaging over 3,000 students at main-stage ballet performances, and providing in-school residencies, after-school programming, and library workshops. Ballet RI’s ProviDANCE after-school programs in both Providence and Pawtucket provide dance education for students in marginalized communities with a bridge to our pre-professional training program through financial and transportation assistance. Our investment in the future includes mentoring pre-professional dancers as trainees and as well as a diverse group of interns behind the scenes building skills in arts administration and theater production. Our work fostering relationships in the community with partner organizations and businesses builds understanding and support around the art of dance.


“Our students come from every area of the city, and from many different socio-economic backgrounds. It was so gratifying for me to see our students (some who may not have access to the arts, ballet in particular) learning about dance and participating on stage in our beautiful auditorium space.”

Kimberly Luca, Nathan Bishop Middle School teacher


As our children communicate more and more through digital media, the need to educate them on communication and expression through movement is ever more necessary. Dance as an artistic form of communication and a physical expression is missing from most school curriculum. Less than 1% of RI public schools provide dance education. Ballet RI understands this void and has a vast array of programs to help schools fill this need.

Storytelling Through Dance

Storytelling through dance (grades K-5) Learn literacy content through the art of dance. Explore non-verbal communication and the technique of pantomime while your students learn how to tell stories with dance. Choose from either having your students perform a short story through dance, or having your students watch a mini performance of storytelling with our professional company members.

Dance History

Dance History (grades 6-12) From the courts of France to the stage of Russia discover the history and culture of ballet. Why are ballet steps in French? Why do ballerinas perform in pointe shoes? Why do dancers bow and curtsey in the middle of the performances? Get answers to all of these questions as students learn the interactive relationship between history and the art of dance.

My Moving World

My Moving World (grades K-12) Look at the movement of the animal kingdom, city landscapes, or machines. Analyse movement qualities and patterns as they exist in our world and transpose those findings into dances.

The Art of Dance

Provide your students (grade K – 12) with an education in the core content area of dance. Dance educators will be focusing on the National Core Arts Standards for Dance in the areas of creating, performing, responding and connecting National Arts Standards. Students will be dancing, creating and analyzing their work.

The Creative Process

The Creative Process (grades K-12) Have your students work up close with a professional choreographer. Learn about the creative process of creating dance and strengthen your students’ creative problem-solving skills through the art of dance.

After-School Programs

After school programs can be customized to fit student populations and time frames, and may include student culmination performances. Residencies can be arranged either during or for after school programming.


ProviDANCE after-school program for second and third graders is focused around beginning ballet technique, storytelling through dance and dance improvisation. Through these content areas, students will build a wide range of physical, mental, social and emotional skills over an entire school year. Students will increase their movement awareness, developing greater strengths, flexibility, coordination and expression. The program involves 2 after school classes per week, plus an additional class at Ballet RI for select students with transportation and ballet uniforms. The ProviDANCE program provides a graduated pathway to the profession of dance for marginalized populations.

After-school Enrichment

After-school enrichment (K-12) One dance class per week is offered for a 9 week session at the school’s gymnasium for up to 15 students per class. The after-school enrichment dance classes offer students an introduction to ballet, modern and jazz techniques. Sessions can be scheduled for 9 weeks in the fall, winter or spring.

All Course Network (ACN)

Ballet RI is a provider of classes through the Rhode Island Department of Education.  ACN is a statewide course catalogue that allows students to take classes for high school credit or enrichment free to all Rhode Islanders.

chatterBOX on Tour

Ballet RI brings our highly popular chatterBOX Theater productions complete with sets, costumes, and dance floor to schools across southern New England. Student experience a live performance in the comfort of their own school to ballets such as Peter and the Wolf, Hansel & Gretel, The Little Prince; and Pippi. Following the performance students are invited to ask the dancers questions.


Ballet RI knows that school field trips to see grand ballets are life changing events for students, as some of our company members first fell in love with ballet on their class trips. Whether watching a Discover Dance Performance in the magnificent space of our historic theaters, or a chatterBOX Theater performance in the intimate space of the Black Box theater, young audiences leave the performance amazed. Accessible seating for wheelchairs, and sensory diverse tools such as noise cancelling headphones and weighted lap blankets are available upon request.


Ballet RI fills the VETS and the Woodman Center with students from all across Southern New England for our Discover Dance Performance Series. Many of the schools who attend are inner city schools in high poverty communities with over half of the student population receiving federally subsidized lunches. For many students, this is the only exposure they have to a world class professional ballet company and these grand theaters. Our Discover Dance performances are full length ballets with the same breath-taking costumes and scenery that our season ticket holders experience. Discover Dance performances are available by advance registration only for public, private and homeschool groups of 10 or more.

Swan Lake


Discover Dance Performances:

Dates for Swan Lake – Discover Dance TBA.

The Vets, Providence


School Bus Grant

Costs of transportation can make or break a field trip budget. RISCA has funding available for assistance with school field trips to arts events. Click below to learn more.

Big Yellow School Bus (BYSB) provides grants of $500 to support arts learning in the school. To qualify for this funding, schools must plan an in-person field trip with an arts and culture organization or an artist in Rhode Island.

Learn More 

chatterBOX theater

Ballet RI’s family series, chatterBOX Theater is available for school groups. To schedule your school for a private viewing of one of our current season productions, please contact the Director of Community Engagement, Valerie Cookson-Botto 401-490-5631 or [email protected].


As Providence’s resident professional ballet company, Ballet RI reaches deep within our city and throughout southern New England building strong community relations. Our programs extend to libraries, community centers, parks and hospitals in southern New England. Recent community visits included: Custom House Square in New Bedford, Mass; Hasbro Hospital; WaterFire Providence; the Providence Community Library and many more. Our partnerships include work with GAMM, Community Music Works, Trinity Rep, Seven Hills RI, Love Your Melon, MAE Organization for the Homeless. Thousands of complementary tickets to Ballet RI’s mainstage performances are offered to community services and non-profit organizations.

Ballet RI is committed to training the next generation of not only dancers, but arts administrators and theater technicians. Our investment in the future includes our Trainee Program, as well as high school and college internship programs. Trainees start their journey in our Summer Dance Intensive where they are taught, guided and vetted for Trainee positions in the company. The Trainees study, perform and work alongside our professional company members who mentor and support their growth as artists. Additionally, each year high school and college students join us for summer and academic year Internships. Working with our administrative and production teams, they learn hands on behind the scenes from our office, studio, and at The Vets, the Providence Performing Arts Center and FBP’s Black Box Theater space.

“It is programs like yours that allow under privileged senior citizens to have these wonderful experiences. Thank you again from the bottom of our hearts.”

Rachel Nass, PACE Rhode Island