Located at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa, California, the highly respected American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School under the direction of former ABT soloist and ballet mistress Alaine Haubert has just announced open fall registration for its unrivaled programs for students ages 3 – 18. Beginning September 7, 2021, the school offers excellent training, performing opportunities, Master Classes, lectures by visiting artists, and the highest quality of classical ballet training through the American Ballet Theatre National Training Curriculum. The school opened in 2015 and carries the name of Orange County philanthropist and Board Member William J. Gillespie.
Serving three hundred students each semester, the ABT Gillespie School is modeled after the program used at the renowned ABT Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in New York. It offers up to forty students to be featured in ABT’s Annual production of The Nutcracker; professional ABT faculty of fifteen; students dance with renowned ballet companies during their training; live pianists accompany all classes; the continuation of the Boys Dance Too program (ages of 6 – 12); and ABT Soloist Arron Scott will hold a 6 week residency September 20-October 30.
“The curriculum offers students a rich knowledge of classical ballet technique incorporating elements of the French, Italian and Russian schools of training. Classes include classical ballet technique, pointe, men’s training, character and body conditioning, variations, partnering and modern. All classes are held in the Center’s studios, which are also used for rehearsals by the world’s leading international ballet companies in the Center’s dance series.
Since the school opened in 2015, students have appeared in ABT’s annual performances of The Nutcracker, the world premiere of ABT’s new production of The Sleeping Beauty (2015), the world premiere of ABT’s production of Whipped Cream (2017), the Mikhailovsky Ballet’s Don Quixote (2018), and the West Coast premiere of ABT’s Harlequinade (2019). During the 2019-2020 school year, ABT Gillespie students performed in the Mariinsky Ballet’s opulent production of La Bayadère (October 16 – 20) and will appear in ABT’s The Nutcracker 2021.” Segerstrom for the Arts press release.
ABT Gillespie Children’s Division Director, Sarah Jones shares, “The ABT Gillespie School is more than just a ballet school. Even our youngest students are learning musicality, spatial awareness, strength, flexibility, terminology, discipline, confidence, and an overall love for the arts. Students see the fruits of their labor and build confidence as they progress through more and more challenging material each year. Being a student at the ABT Gillespie school will provide dancers the transferable skills to become whatever they dream of – whether that be a ballerina, a racecar driver, a CEO, or an Astronaut.”
Professional training program that former ABT Gillespie School students have been accepted into include the American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in New York and programs at San Francisco Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, Pennsylvania Ballet, Houston Ballet, Boston Ballet, Ballet West, Paris Opera, and most recently within the last few weeks ABT Gillespie School Graduate, Mariana Vargas, will continue her ballet career by attending the Etoile Professional Program with imPerfect Dancers in Pisa, Italy.
Segerstrom Center for the Arts is an acclaimed arts institution as well as a beautiful multi-disciplinary cultural campus. The Center is supported in part by Mr. and Mrs. Andy Fimiano, Alexie Catherine Jones Memorial Fund, and the Pas de Deux Chapter of The Guilds of Segerstrom Center for the Arts, which has provided need-based scholarships to many young dancers.
The 2021-2022 schedule
September 7th First Day of Fall 2021 Semester
November 21st – 28th Thanksgiving Break
December 19th – January 2nd Winter Break
January 3rd First Day of Spring 2022 Semester
January 15th – 17th MLK Weekend
February 19th – 21st Winter Recess
April 10th – 17th Spring Break
*Schedule is subject to change
To see the list of faculty at the American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School click HERE.
To learn more about the American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School at Segerstrom Center for the Arts, please click HERE or call 714-556-4100.
To learn more about American Ballet Theatre, click HERE.
To visit the Segerstrom Center for the Arts website, click HERE.
Written and compiled by Jeff Slayton from Segerstrom Center of the Arts press release by Carly Murphy.
Featured image: Students at American Ballet Theatre William J. Gillespie School at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts – Photo courtesy of The Center