Chautauqua Institution

School of Dance

The Chautauqua Ballet program, under the direction of Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux, is well known for the unique opportunity it affords students to study with master teachers within a small studio environment. The faculty at Chautauqua will often help place students into major companies throughout the U.S. through their many contacts. An important part of the program is the possibility for young dancers to perform (with live music) in the 4,000-seat Amphitheater.

The School of Dance facilities include four large teaching and rehearsal studios — the Carnahan-Jackson Studios. The dancers are housed in a well-supervised dormitory which is adjacent to the studios. The summer of 2009 saw the completion of new buildings which house the costume shop as well as faculty/staff housing. The center core of the Carnahan-Jackson Studios has been reconfigured to provide for enhanced administrative and production offices as well as proper locker rooms for both professional and student dancers.

The ballet curriculum at Chautauqua is designed for talented students who wish to pursue careers as professional ballet dancers. Intensive training in classical ballet will be continued in rehearsals leading to performances. All classes feature live music. In spite of a rigorous schedule of classes and rehearsals, students will have ample time to enjoy recreational activities at Chautauqua including symphony concerts, professional ballet company performances, Friday Night specials and any number of recitals and lectures at no extra cost.


Chautauqua Connections
Audition & Application Information

Patricia McBride is one of five to receive Kennedy Center Honors in 2014, joining Al Green, Tom Hanks, Lily Tomlin and Sting. Continuing a career that spans more than six decades, McBride now serves as associate artistic director of the Charlotte Ballet and as master teacher at Chautauqua Institution's School of Dance.

July 16 - 18

2016 cost: $200.00

For this special three day weekend we invite around 75 dancers, ages 7 -10, to join us for the pre workshop program. These 75 dancers will be divided into three groups of 25 and based on age in order to keep the class size small.  This is always a wonderful and exciting weekend for the students.

Many of Chautauqua's dance alumns have gone on to build illustrious careers in some of the worlds leading ballet companies. Below is a partial list of alumni carrers. Please contact Coordinator of Student Services, Sarah Malinoski-Umberger.

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2016 Season Information



Artistic Director
Jean-Pierre Bonnefoux



Sarah Malinoski-Umberger
Coordinator of
Student Services
(716) 357-6233
fax: (716) 357-9014

Chautauqua Summer Schools of Fine & Performing Arts
P.O. Box 1098
1 Ames Ave.
Chautauqua, NY 14722