To create awareness, appreciation, and to engage learners of all ages in a deeper understanding and connection to dance.
Kansas City Ballet Shares the Power of Dance
Kansas City Ballet’s Community Engagement and Education Department provides joyful and meaningful experiences that inspire, inform, and engage the broader community. Kansas City Ballet is committed to making dance accessible to everyone, from very young children to senior citizens, through fun workshops, interactive dance demonstrations, discounted theatre performances, adult education programs, and open company rehearsals. On average, approximately 20,000 people annually benefit from KC Ballet’s community engagement and education programs, such as Student Matinees, Lecture Demonstrations, Dance Workshops, Pre-performance programs, Ballet Tours, and our Reach Out and Dance (R.O.A.D.) Residency and Scholarship programs, throughout Missouri and Kansas.
- More than 6,000 school students attend matinee performances of The Nutcracker and other classic and contemporary ballets each year.
- Lecture demonstrations reach over 2,000 children each year.
- Educational programs, such as dance workshops, ballet tours and Pre-performance programs, along with our flagship Reach Out and Dance (R.O.A.D.) Residency program impacts over 14,000 people each year.
- The Reach Out and Dance (R.O.A.D.) Scholarship program provides up to 112 talented R.O.A.D residency students the opportunity to continue studying dance free of charge at Kansas City Ballet’s Todd Bolender Center for Dance and Creativity. Additionally, over 240 Road Scholar principals, teachers, parents/guardians, and other family members participate in program activities.
Community Engagement and Education Director
April Berry, dance director, master teacher, educator, and internationally acclaimed principal dancer with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, was born and raised in New York. Ms. Berry began her professional training in ballet at the National Academy of Ballet and Theatre Arts in New York City under the founding direction of Thalia Mara, also founder of the prestigious International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi. As a young dance student Ms. Berry was a scholarship student and a company apprentice with the Dance Theatre of Harlem under directors Arthur Mitchell and Karel Shook. Ms. Berry’s professional dance career began in ballet at the age of 17 and she has danced with ballet companies in the United States, Switzerland, and Italy. She studied modern dance techniques and jazz dance at the Ailey School in New York, and trained in African Caribbean folkloric and popular dance forms at the Escuela Nacional des Arts (National School of the Arts) in Havana, Cuba.
Kansas City Ballet reaches students and teachers of all backgrounds and experience levels through in-school programming, tours to our studios, and specially-priced matinees at the theater. Kansas City Ballet also offers unique audience education opportunities for adults wishing to expand their experiences around the ballet’s current repertory.
Over 20,000 people – from students to working professionals to retirees – benefit from our community programs annually.