We create, perform, teach and promote dance as an essential and inspiring element of our community.
Celebrating 30 years, Nashville Ballet is the largest professional ballet company in Tennessee presenting a varied repertoire of classical ballet and contemporary works by noted choreographers, including original works by Artistic Director & CEO Paul Vasterling. Nashville Ballet presents opportunities for Middle Tennesseans to experience ballet through classical, contemporary and family-friendly performances, all inspired by poetry in motion. Nashville Ballet and the second company NB2 (a pre-professional training company) provide arts and educational experiences to more than 75,000 audience members annually through season performances, training at School of Nashville Ballet and Outreach & Education programming. Nashville Ballet delivers Outreach & Education programming to community centers, Head Start centers, public libraries, and public schools across Tennessee that integrates dance education with core academic subjects such as reading, math, science, and social studies to support the State’s developmental and academic standards. School of Nashville Ballet provides world-class instruction in ballet and other forms of dance to students of all ages each year.
Nashville Ballet is committed to providing exceptional and accessible arts programming and opportunities to a diverse community through three primary initiatives: season performances, Outreach & Education programs, and School of Nashville Ballet. Through these initiatives, Nashville Ballet makes a deep impact on thousands of individuals across Middle Tennessee and beyond.
· Through its three arms of operations, Nashville Ballet currently provides artistic and educational experiences to more than 75,000 audience members, annually.
· In 2014 Nashville’s Nutcracker claimed the title of highest-attended performing arts event in Nashville when the holiday classic broke box office records with more than 22,000 tickets held. In 2015, this record was once again shattered when the production saw upwards of 24,000 attendees over its 13-performance run.
· Received nonprofit status from IRS for Nashville
Ballet Foundation, which will now house endowment assets, bringing
Nashville Ballet in line with fiscal best practices to protect these
assets in a fully separate legal entity.
· Nashville Ballet has steadily increased investments in its Outreach & Education initiatives, now contributing nearly $500,000 in direct and indirect resources towards its efforts. Aimed at eliminating the geographic and financial barriers to experiencing the arts by bringing quality educational performances out into the community, these initiatives are reaching more and more community members each year: audience numbers grew by 20% from FY13 to FY14, and by 16% from FY14 to FY15. Annual reach now hovers over 43,000 audience members in 12+ Middle Tennessee counties annually.
Goals for 2016
· Create a new outreach ballet focused on middle school aged students and thereby doubling the inventory of programs appropriate for this targeted audience; a first step toward doubling our reach to this age demographic.
· Meet community needs with the newly launched Studio Division of dance training in School of Nashville Ballet, which provides the same high-quality dance training as our Academy but on a more flexible schedule, allowing students to more easily pursue dance alongside other extracurricular activities.
· Continue to utilize Outreach & Education programs as an effective way to recruit students for the expanding need-based scholarship program at School of Nashville Ballet.
Nashville Ballet’s $4.7 million budget is supported by ticket sales, school tuition revenue and contributions from individuals, corporate partners and government agencies. Earned revenue continues to be a stabilizing force for the company, however, maintaining a steady and growing source of contributed revenue is equally vital to our success and continued excellence. Thus, donor participation is critical in the following ways:
1) General Support and Membership: Donors who contribute unrestricted dollars to support Nashville Ballet's mission-critical activities are a part of our membership program. In exchange for your generosity and display of support, we provide an extensive program of membership benefits to allow donors to engage more deeply with the art and artists of Nashville Ballet.
2) Creation Fund donations: This Fund supports the evolution of new repertory, fulfilling a critical component of our mission. It ensures that Nashville Ballet programming will continue to be an exciting and innovative option for residents in Music City and beyond.
3) School of Nashville Ballet Scholarship Fund: School of Nashville Ballet offers dance training for all
ages and abilities and takes seriously its role
as a top-caliber educator in the community. Aiming to serve a student body
that reflects the demographics of our Middle Tennessee region, need-based scholarships are awarded to provide tuition and supplies to
qualifying students who demonstrate a passion for and commitment to dance. With the recent facility expansion, School of Nashville Ballet will
have more physical space to accommodate a greater number of scholarship
students. The value of a full academic year scholarship varies, averaging
approximately $2,500 per student. Individual and Corporate gifts are gratefully accepted to help underwrite the costs associated with these scholarship enrollments. With the community's help, the school hopes to increase its scholarship student enrollment to account for 10% of the student body by 2020.
4) Sponsorship Support: Nashville Ballet relies on corporate support with season sponsors, Outreach & Education partners, and other program sponsors from local businesses.
5) ELEVATE: The capital campaign to build the future of Nashville Ballet remains an institutional priority. While Nashville Ballet's Board of Directors approved a capital campaign finance model that enables the organization to carry long-term debt, we continue to solicit and welcome capital gifts that will alleviate some of the debt service that has been approved to be carried, promoting a more resilient and fiscally sound financial management.
As Board President of Nashville Ballet, I am proud of the organization’s incredible history, leading us to the incredible 2015-2016 30th anniversary season. Nashville Ballet has soared to unprecedented status over the last several years and demonstrates an unwavering commitment to artistic excellence and fiscal responsibility. Nashville Ballet’s Board of Directors manages and governs the organization’s assets with utmost care and effectiveness. We own our own facility and hold enormous pride in our history of working within a balanced budget while holding no debt other than for our facility expansion. Board members support Nashville Ballet in a variety of ways: through 100% participation in the annual fund, performance series subscriptions, Ballet Ball attendance, connecting the organization to local businesses and fostering corporate sponsorship, and advocating Nashville Ballet’s mission in the community. Over the past several years, Nashville Ballet has significantly increased efforts to more thoroughly engage the Board through the use of active committees and opportunities to lead important initiatives, providing members with meaningful ways to invest in both our successes and our challenges.
Artistically, Nashville Ballet is holding its own in contributing to the many reasons why Nashville is the second most vibrant arts community in America (Arts Vibrancy Index, SMU’s National Center for Arts Research, 2014). Under the leadership of Paul Vasterling, Artistic Director & CEO, our organization has risen to receive international recognition as one of America’s premiere regional ballet companies. Nashville Ballet showcases a robust repertoire of original works created by Mr. Vasterling as well as masterworks by many of ballet’s great choreographers, all of which are executed by the top-tier talent of our main Company and NB2 dancers.
Like any arts organization, Nashville Ballet is challenged to increase audiences and donors to support continued success of our mission-critical programs. With the recent expansion and renovation of our facility, which will enable School of Nashville Ballet to better meet the growing demand for services and classes, we are well poised for the next phase of growth and continued excellence in performance, dance education and outreach. Nashville Ballet’s Board of Directors is eager to govern this exceptional organization through this exciting time of growth and expansion.
First and foremost, Nashville Ballet is a performing arts company whose artists, dancers and teachers reside in Nashville throughout the year. The main company presents a season repertoire of five full-scale productions, as well as narrated children’s ballets. We are committed to presenting innovative dance and classical ballets performed in collaboration with some of Nashville's finest musicians, composers and designers.
Secondly, we strive to provide the highest level of professional and recreational dance training in the community.The elite faculty and staff of our School of Nashville Ballet provide world-class instruction for students of all ages and abilities. Programs offered include a Children’s Division, an Academy to train students who are interested in pursuing a professional dance career, as well as a Community Division offering a wide range of dance classes to adults promoting healthy, active lifestyles, regardless of skill level. The demand for these services has increased significantly and steadily since 2011. After multiple years of operating School classes at capacity with long waitlists, the Board of Directors approved a plan to renovate and expand the facility, equipping Nashville Ballet with the resources it needs to continue long-term growth. ELEVATE, Nashville Ballet’s Capital Campaign to renovate and expand our current facility, was launched in 2013 and completed in May 2015.
The third facet of our mission is Outreach & Education programming, which brings interactive dance and arts education to 43,000 children and families in Middle Tennessee through interactive children's ballets. Stemming from the philosophy that the arts should be accessible to anyone and everyone, and responding to our nation’s continued decline of in-school arts offerings, these performances are designed to break down potential barriers to arts education.
Nashville Ballet perpetuates the successes of these three mission-critical aspects of our operations through sound and ambitious financial, artistic, marketing, sales, and development plans. We are proud and honored to serve Middle Tennessee with performances, dance education and outreach initiatives of the highest caliber.
The 2015-2016 30th anniversary season opens in September at TPAC with Peter Pan.
Featuring original choreography by Nashville Ballet Artistic Director & CEO
Paul Vasterling, and original set and costume design commissioned by Nashville
Ballet. In October Dracula is presented as a second fall production featuring choreography
and libretto by Paul Vasterling and music by Malcolm Martineau. Nashville’s Nutcracker, a timeless
holiday classic, features an adapted story celebrating Nashville’s unique
history. Bringing the
best of Nashville’s thriving arts community together to highlight some of the
most unique and inspirational collaborations in Music City, this year’s Attitude is presented in creative
partnership with The Bluebird Café featuring original works in collaboration
with select Bluebird artists, as well as Petite
Mort and Chopin
Ballet presents the world premiere of Layla
and resurrect Vasterling’s Carmina Burana
alongside it in the spring. Layla, based
on the ancient Persian story of Layla and Majnun, will be set to an original
score. Carmina Burana
is set to iconic instrumentation written by German composer Carl Orff. The season closes with Degas + the Little Dancer, a narrated children’s ballet. Narration and interactive elements
make this ballet, based on the book of the same name by Laurence Anholt,
perfect for all ages.
An intrinsic part of Nashville Ballet’s mission is our commitment to the community through our Outreach & Education program. These programs expose children, teens and adults to the artistry, beauty and athleticism of dance by providing unique performances that cultivate an interest in the arts. Through these far-reaching and accessible programs Nashville Ballet aims to eliminate geographic and financial barriers to arts and arts education, believing that this is how we build the arts patrons, artists and civic leaders of tomorrow, and that they are reflective of our region's rich diversity. Reaching 43,000+ audience members annually, these programs take dancers, music and sets into schools, libraries and community centers throughout more than a dozen Middle Tennessee counties. Each of our school curriculum-based programs (for children pre-school all the way through high school) meet many of the developmental and academic standards set forth by the state of Tennessee and Metropolitan Nashville Public School (MNPS) system, and are interactive in nature, appealing to various learning styles and needs of all ages. Our Family and Community Programs introduce audiences to the art of dance with public performances and help us develop and cultivate educated viewers with a passion and appreciation for the arts. These programs provide a unique, intimate and educational experience for everyone in attendance. Community partners helping to deliver these programs include the Metro Nashville Public Library, Metro Parks and Recreation and Nashville Metro Public Schools. Public and private entities can learn more and book performances through our website.
School of Nashville Ballet offers the highest quality dance
training for students of all ages and experience levels. Qualified faculty provide
a comprehensive dance education that is challenging and
rewarding. Students are individually nurtured with expertise and
sensitivity. With two campuses, School of Nashville Ballet provides a variety of training and recreational programs:
Children’s (ages 2-5), Academy (ages 6-18), Community
(ages 13+) and Professional Training (ages 16+) Divisions. With access to more dance space thanks to the ELEVATE capital campaign, a fifth division has been added to the school's offerings: Studio Division provides schedule flexibility to students (ages 8-18), making it easier for students to pursue dance alongside other extracurricular activities and explore more dance styles, including jazz, hip hop and musical theater.
School of Nashville Ballet also offers a nationally recognized Summer Intensive program. This 7-week training camp provides extensive instruction for serious dancers from all over the world and prepares students for a career in dance. Through an ongoing partnership with Belmont University, most students participating in the Summer Intensive stay in the Belmont residence halls while living in and exploring Nashville.
Nashville Ballet's artistic reputation has grown significantly in recent years, both nationally and internationally. With this evolution, we are better poised to attract top-tier talent and diversify our repertoire with both quantity and quality as more choreographers see Nashville Ballet as a reputable company on which to stage major works. We are challenged to continue developing a sophisticated audience to embrace our curatorial choices. As an example, our ability to provide artistically ambitious programming relies in part on our audience purchasing tickets without necessarily recognizing programs by name. Likewise, it is also a challenge to balance this new programming with classic “story ballet” programming, such as Swan Lake.
The School of Nashville Ballet continues to experience a growth in demand for dance instruction for students of all ages. Many of our classes have been sold out for more than two years with it being physically impossible to add classes to meet this demand due to lack of studio space. In response, we launched ELEVATE, Nashville Ballet's Capital Campaign to renovate and expand our current facility. With this project now complete we can become the dance school our community is demanding. The newly expanded facility opened in May 2015 and allows us to immediately increase not only the number of classes offered, but the types of classes offered. In fall 2015 we launched a new division of classes, the Studio Division, for older children and teens who want to continue studying dance at a high level but with a scaled back time commitment. With this opportunity we will be challenged to find talented and available instructors who will grow with us as our number of classes grows slowly over the next few years.
Outreach & Education has been meeting a growing demand for arts education for many years. In response, Nashville Ballet sought out funding to directly support the increase in these initiatives. With a generous grant from Dollar General Literacy Foundation, Nashville Ballet was able to significantly expand literacy-based "Story Time" outreach ballets throughout Middle Tennessee. Thanks to this and other generous support from corporate and private citizens Nashville Ballet has been able to continue its investment in this arm of operations: The reach of these initiatives has experienced significant growth over the past two fiscal years, averaging 18% per year. A steady growth of community support is needed to continue this trajectory of program reach and quality of impact. Additional staffing will be required to support the many aspects of increased programming, such as managing bookings, training dancers with an increased repertory of ballets, measuring impact, moderating performances and adequately managing and caring for costumes and sets.
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
Nashville Ballet's ongoing Capital Campaign has impacted contributions and expense items reported on the prior two years' financial statements and tax returns. We have attempted to delineate an approximation of this impact on our most recent Federal Form 990, Schedule O, in an effort to show the continued financial strength of the organization independent of the capital campaign. Furthermore, expected contributions and expenses for the current year are not included in the operational budget but will be reported on year-end audited financial statements and tax returns.
Copyright © 2014 The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee
3833 Cleghorn Avenue, Nashville, TN 37215