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Ballet Chicago is an internationally recognized professional track school of ballet that creates exceptional dancers and people. Ballet Chicago believes every aspiring artist deserves the opportunity to explore his or her full potential, and is committed to making classical ballet training accessible to all talented students who have the desire to dance. 


Co-founders Daniel Duell and Patricia Blair are devoted to carrying on Balanchine's legacy by providing one of the highest caliber Balanchine-based curriculums in the nation. By teaching impeccable technique as well as fundamental life skills, Ballet Chicago students go on to find success in dance and life.


Ballet Chicago provides an accelerated performance program where members receive years of on-stage experience, building confidence, camaraderie, community and an array of skill sets that translate to any arena. Through a special arrangement with the George Balanchine Trust, BCSC performs an extensive Balanchine repertoire. New works join these masterworks reserved solely for professionals and only the most accomplished students worldwide, producing outstanding performance resumes. 

All the ballets performed, including Duell and Blair's exquisite production of the Nutcracker, are intentionally selected to prepare the dancers for the technical and artistic demands of a professional career, and to provide a curriculum vitae that boasts a recognized repertoire known for its standard of excellence the world over. Since its inception, BCSC has given over 400 performances throughout Chicago, the Midwest and Canada, with annual seasons at the historic Athenaeum Theatre in Lakeview and the Harris Theater for Music and Dance.


Serenade choreography by George Balanchine © The George Balanchine Trust. 

Photography by Ron McKinney Photography


The Balanchine Repertory Project offers our students the opportunity to perform the repertoire of George Balanchine, the 20th century's most influential classical choreographer. Mr. Balanchine founded the School of American Ballet and the New York City Ballet, and is regarded as one of the most significant artistic influences in the world of ballet. A prolific artist, Mr. Balanchine created more than 400 ballets during his lifetime.


Ballet Chicago has a long history of bringing the beauty of classical ballet to people of all ages, ethnicities and socioeconomic backgrounds. Outreach programs include:

  • Gift of Dance - provides free tickets to our annual Nutcracker at the historic Athenaeum Theatre and our annual Balanchine + Beyond Series at the Harris Theater for Music and Dance.

  • DanceVision - In collaboration with the International Music Foundation, we offer special performances for CPS children every fall at the Chicago Cultural Center.

  • Nutcracker School Matinees - offers steeply discounted tickets to school children from the entire Chicago metropolitan area. In-school study guides are provided to enhance each child's in-theater experience.

  • Dance-Along Nutcracker - In collaboration with the City of Chicago and the Department of Cultural Affairs, we offer classes and join the admission-free performances for children and families each December. 

From the inner-city neighborhoods of Chicago to the outlying suburbs, approximately 10,000 people experience our programs and performance offerings each year.

Gift of Dance Recipients and Collaborative Partners*

Holy Family Ministry

Inner City Impact Cicero

International Music Foundation


Little Learners Academy

Logan Square Chamber of Commerce

Kenwood Academy

Kroc Center Chicago

Lawrence Hall

Maywood Fine Arts Center

Mercy Home for Boys and Girls

Momma Tribe

New Life Centers of Chicagoland

New Moms

Project Education Plus

Project Syncere

Recovery on Water

Tickets for Kids

Urban Prairie School

Salvation Army

Youth Crossroads, Inc

Jane Adams Resource Corporations


Anixter Center

The Art Institute of Chicago

Big Brothers Big Sisters Metro Chicago

Breakthrough Urban Ministries


Chicago Academy for the Arts

Chicago Cares

Chicago Children's Choir

Chicago High School for the Arts

Chicago Hope Academy

Christopher House

College Mentoring Experience

Chicago Police Department

Chicago Public Schools

Chicago Youth Centers (CYC) Deneen School

CYC Educational Support Initiative

CYC Fellowship House

CYC Sidney Epstein

Deborah's Place

Deeply Rooted Dance Theater

Ensemble Español

Future World Learning Center

The Girl Scouts of America

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