Metropolitan Ballet Theatre - Annual Report Fiscal Year 2015


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Annual Report of Metropolitan Ballet Theatre & Academy, Fiscal Year 2015 (July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2015)

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Annual Report Fiscal Year 2015 July 1, 2014- June 30, 2015


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Leadership, Faculty, and Support Staff Artistic Director Elizabeth Odell Catlett Executive Director Paula Ross Assistant Artistic Director Katerina Rodgaard Business & Communications Manager Brenda Lipowsky Registrar Erin Fitzgerald Administrative Assitant Maurice Watson Interns: Emily McKiernan Camille Sambor Founder: Suzanne Erlon Faculty Elizabeth Odell Catlett Rachel Coyle Christine Doyle Erin Fitzgerald Jennifer Hausdorfer Shady Mohammad Nicole Montano Anneliese Parisi Matina Phillips Katerina Rodgaard Gavin Stewart Rachel Turner Dmitriy Vistoropskiy Maurice Watson Board of Directors President Anita Anderson Vice President Cheryl Heller Secretary Sanja Modric Treasurer Vanessa Rowan Ex-officio Erica Hwang Directors Elizabeth Odell Catlett Jay Reilly Paula Ross Thank you to these immediate past Board Members for their service: Jeffrey Katz Yves Pelletier Robin Salomon Metropolitan Ballet Theatre, Inc. is funded in part by an operating grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency dedicated to cultivating a vibrant cultural community where the arts thrive. Metropolitan Ballet Theatre, Inc. is supported in part by funding from the Montgomery County government and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County. Cover Photography by Goli Kaviani & Elizabeth Odell Catlett Cover photography, clockwise from top left: Academy photo - Modern 2 class; Sleeping Beauty, March 2015; Academy photo - Ballet 5; Carabosse amd her minions, Sleeping Beauty, March 2015; Academy photo - Early Ballet; Soldiers, The Nutcracker, December 2014 Metropolitan Ballet Theatre is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts education organization. Gifts are gratefully accepted and are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.


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Sincerely, From the President of the Board As you peruse this annual report I hope that what stands out to you is the same thing that stands out to me – that Metropolitan Ballet Theatre has experienced phenomenal growth, is on solid ground, and has a bright future. With the inaugural academic year in our new location behind us, it’s with pride that we look back on the positive impact of the move to Gaithersburg. The larger, state-of-the-art venue has allowed for growth in the number of students served and the opportunity to provide instruction in different dance styles. It has provided our dancers with unparalleled classroom and rehearsal space that makes for a seamless transition to the professional stage. And it has allowed for performances to happen in-house, for free, to all in our new community. In a year of such program growth, we were pleased to be in strong enough financial position to increase staff capacity, as well. As if brand-new studios weren’t enough, Artistic Director Elizabeth Catlett announced her intention to create a brand-new full-length ballet with an original story and score, all of which you’ll read more about in the next pages. Executive Director Paula Ross managed the growth of MBT with an eye towards financial stability and community service. Her hard work was recognized by Isiah Leggett, Montgomery County Executive, when she received the Emerging Leader Award at the Executive’s Awards for the Arts and Humanities in October 2014. As President of the Board of Directors, I’m grateful to the current staff and faculty of MBT for their passion and commitment to the dancers and our new community, and I’m in awe of how far the organization has come in such a short period of time. I’m also grateful to all who are listed in this report as supporters of MBT. The generosity of our community is what allows MBT to give back in the form of scholarships, free performances, and other activities that open up the world of dance to anyone who wishes to be a part of it. We look forward to building on the successes of the past year as we consider a future filled with continued dedication to artistic excellence, to serving our community, and to serving the dancers and families who are at the heart of the MBT’s mission. Sincerely, Anita Durall Anderson Anita Amderson and Sanja Modric at a donor reception, November 2014.


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From the Artistic Director Pride, creativity, and growth are a few words that come to mind when describing the past year at Metropolitan Ballet Theatre. I am proud of our students, the staff and faculty, the studio, and I am most proud of the good that we are doing for our community. Our new facility has been an inspiring place to work and dance. The size of the studios and the quality of our space has been motivating and provides a professional atmosphere for our dancers to thrive. I have seen a transformation in our student’s technical ability as well as their dedication to the art form. MBT has not only become a more professional institution for students who want to maximize their training but it has also become a more unified home. Our teachers and staff deeply care for each and every student and because of that we are noticing a transformation in the level of talent in our school. I am so pleased with our new faculty and staff who joined MBT in September of 2014. Erin Fitzgerald, Registrar, and Katerina Rodgaard, Assistant Artistic Director, have made excellent additions at MBT. They are both extremely knowledgeable and passionate about their work and students. This past year a new ballet project was approved by our Board of Directors. I have had the fortune of working with Heather Katz, writer and dancer, and Alexandra Bryant, composer, on this original work. I am extremely grateful to the Board of Directors for their support on this endeavor. The creative process of developing a brand new story and musical composition has been thrilling and I look forward to seeing the work develop into a full ballet performed by our wonderful students at MBT. Student enrollment and performance participation grew this past year. It is rewarding to see that our academy and theatre are encouraging more and more students to share their love for dance in the studio, on stage and in the community. We increased the number of performances by our professional outreach ensemble and saw more and more of our MBT students participate in local community demonstrations. This love and dedication for the art form and community makes our organization so special. Sincerely, Elizabeth Catlett Elizabeth Catlett with her new book, Becoming Sugar Plum, written by her and Heather Katz


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Dec 2014: 26th annual production of The Nutcracker Elizabeth Odell Catlett’s newest updates to MBT’s traditional full-length Nutcracker were received with rave reviews from both long-time MBT patrons and patrons new to MBT’s outstanding productions. 86 student dancers, plus 7 professional dancers and adults in the party scene, took the stage for 10 performances. Approximately 4,400 patrons witnessed the magic of MBT’s fabulous costumes and beautiful scenery – including a Christmas tree that grows forever, magical dancing dolls, marching toy soldiers, giant mice, a dazzling blizzard with dancing snowflakes and a land of luscious sweets. MBT’s incredible volunteers once again logged over 1,000 hours to make this production a reality. Meeting our Mission: Inspiring Performances MBT’s production of Sleeping Beauty was a storybook ballet for the record books! More students than ever before participated in MBT’s spring season - 68 students! They, with faculty members, performed for four audiences totaling approximately 1,400 patrons. Elizabeth Catlett and Katie Smith staged a beautiful ballet. As always, MBT’s volunteers worked tirelessly to ensure a seamless production, logging over 800 hours to create incredible costumes and beautiful sets! March 2015: Sleeping Beauty May 2015: 3rd annual Gala & Dance Concert Students of all ages, levels and disciplines took the stage at MBT’s 3rd annual Gala & Dance Concert. The event raised nearly $14,000 for the annual fund and capital needs, and also gave our students an amazing end-of-year celebration! 111 students, plus the Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble performed to a sold-out crowd at BlackRock Center for the Arts. This event would not have been possible without major support from corporate sponsors Whole Foods Market Kentlands, Not Your Average Joes, Geppetto Catering, A-Squad Events, and Quench. County Councilmember Craig Rice led a successful live auction to benefit MBT’s scholarship fund. Of note, four student dancers presented original pieces, previously adjudicated as part of the annual choreography competition. Guest judges awarded the choregraphy competition prize to Genevieve Pelletier. It was a very memorable evening! Fostering creativity, flexinbiliy, diversity, and self-confidence


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Outreach Events Me e t ing o ur Mi s si o n : C o mmunit y O ut re a ch MBT continually raises the “barre” to take our art form beyond our studio wall and stages. Our students and faculty reach thousands annually - including many underserved youth and seniors in our community through outreach classes, demonstration events, classroom visits, free community performances and more. As part of our mission, we also host a ticket giveaway program so that at-risk or underserved youth and seniors are able to enjoy a live performance with their family or friends. We recently added one more school to our free after-school residency programs at Title 1 elementary schools, now serving 3 local schools. Here is a sample of our fiscal year 2015 outreach (more specifics at Year-round: Big/Little mentoring program at MBT, after-school residency programs with free classes at local Title 1 elementary schools 2015 June - free classes and Open House at MBT studios, Gaithersburg May - the Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble visited local schools ans senior centers with performances of Carnival of the Animals. May - hosted studio visit from students at Summit Hall ES May/June - free community performances from student choreography competition finalists and Sleeping Beauty cast, and sample demonstration classes at Kentlands Day in Gaithersburg, MCPS Performing Arts Festival, Celebrate Gaithersburg Day March - MBT students performed at the Community Foundation Gala at Arena Stage in DC March - patch chat activities for Girl Scouts after performances of MBT’s Spring Ballet (Sleeping Beauty) January - free/low cost performances from Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble at Holiday Park Senior Center and Little Bennett ES January - free student performance open to community at MBT for MLK Jr. Day of Service 2014 December – patch chat activities for Girl Scouts after performances of The Nutcracker Sept - Dec - Free weekly after school classes at two Title 1 elementary schools in Gaithersburg September - Free performance of Carnival of the Animals from the Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble at MBT September - free community demonstration classes at various locations including the Whole Kids Charity event at Whole Foods Kentlands August – open house, free trial classes at MBT studios July - summer residency program with free classes at Summit Hall ES Enhancing civic responsibility through outreach to the community.


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Educational Programming MBT is unique as a classical ballet school in that we are all-inclusive. We accept any student, regardless of age, size, shape, technical ability, previous experience, future aspirations or economic circumstances. We serve students from age 2 through adult, and offer an adaptive ballet program for those students with developmental or physical disabilities. We believe arts education makes a well-rounded person, and that every student deserves the opportunity for a premier dance education. Our Academy served over 400 students in FY15 in classical ballet, jazz, tap, modern and hip hop dance. A few statistics from fiscal year 2015 programs: • • • • • • 453 students participated in the academic year program, taught by 13 faculty members. 398 students participated in the summer program, taught by 10 faculty members and 6 guest artists. over 100 students participated in off-site free residency programs. Scholarships totaling over $25,000 were provided to families in need. MBT’s Student Government Association led four major social events for the student body. Students participated in the first-ever MLK Jr. Day of Service Dance Concert and Dance Your Heart Out events at MBT - both opportunities to present original choreography in MBT’s Black Box Studio Theater. Over 30 pairs of students participated in the Big-Little mentoring program, where younger students are paired with older students to particpate in social activities, class visitations and letter-trades throughout the year. Meeting our Mission: Exceptional Dance Education • Photos: Top: Ballet Level 4 student, Big-Little Pair perform original choreography together at Dance Your Heart Out concert Middle: MBT students at the MCPS/MCCPTA Performing Arts Fstival Lower: At dedication of Henry C. Wu Studio, a gift made possible by the Mei family Opposite (L-R): an Arden Courts of Kensington resident greets Clara after an outreach performance of The Nutcracker, MBT students perform at the Community Foundation gala at Arena Stage Professional dance education in a caring, nurturing environment.


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Thank you to these Friends of MBT Donations received July 1, 2014 - June 30, 2015 Sponsor Levels ($500-$25,000+): Director’s Circle ($25,000+): Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County, Margaret Abell Powell Fund Sustainer Circle ($10,000+): Capital One Bank Grand Jeté ($5,000-9,999): MD State Arts Council Pirouette ($2,500 - $4,999): Community Foundation National Capital Region – County Executive’s Ball Fund Arabesque ($1,000 - $2,499): Anita & Eric Anderson, Cheryl & Michael Heller, Brenda & Mark Lipowsky, Sanja & Tomislav Modric Relevé ($500 - $999): Nitsa & Timothy Angelos, Bethesda Physicians, P.C., Capitol Benefits, Elizabeth & Ryan Catlett, Mr. & Mrs. Thomas J. Flaherty, Erica & David Hwang, Heather & Jeffrey Katz, Susan & Yves Pelletier, Paula & Andrew Ross, Tracy Wolff & Mark Maleski Fr i e n d s of M BT - T h an k y o u ! Contributors ($250 - $499) Yongbok Bivin, Virginia Colten-Bradley & Michael Bradley, The Brandt Family, Jo Alice Buxton, Sally & David Catlett, Partha Chowdhury & Swati Sil, Ellen & Alan Cunningham, Maria & Demetri Giakoumatos, Sherry & Mark Gowarty, Ella & Daniel Gray, Lora Green, Michelle & Matthew Grow, Jennifer & Peter Haupt, June Yang & Frank Liu, Sarah & Robert Salomon III, Erin & David Stillwell Friends ($100 - $249) The Abramson Family, Ahn & Matt Boesch, Clark Construction on behalf of Curt Allen, Kathy Coakley, Marjorie & Jamie Cohen, Claire Danaceau, Chris Danaceau, Sarah Danaceau, Merry Danaceau, Maryam & Saeid Garzan, Yelena & Dmitriy Goryachev, Mary Lou and Charles Haggard, Summer & Peter Hardinge, Pin He and XinYi Lu, Carolyn & Scott Herman, Arlene Hwang & Michael Chen, Ellen Pam Katz, Michele & Daniel Kaufman, Goli & Kamyar Kaviani, Les Gals Activewear, Quyen & Greg Metzger, Kally & Andrew Panagos, Jennifer Pak, Anabela & Curt Puhl, Tonie & Christopher Rommel, Anna & Bart Sambor, Rita M. Sampson, Lorraine & Mike Slud, Christine & Eric Smith, Paula & Alex Spiliotopoulos, Suzie & Todd Young, Laurie Zavadil Supporters (up to $99) ($25 - $99): Monica Barion & Apollon Fanzeres, Rachel Coyle, Erin Fitzgerald, Charis Gant, Nathan Knotts, Lori & Myles McKiernan, Karlyne & Jay Reilly, Katy Rene, Pamela Resurreccion, Jody Rosenblum, Dee & Andy Senuta, The Shalgian family, Laura & Mark Wilson ($1-$24): Lisa Aispuro, Katie Bartell, Nilanthi Beekhuysen, Cindy Fang, Diane Gotzman, Stephanie Kavadoy, Aaliyah Pinto Corporate Sponsors - significant in-kind or cash support A-Squad Entertainment, Bethesda Physicians, P.C., Capitol Benefits, Ed Fowlkes with Direct Deals MD, Geppetto Catering, GoliStudio, Google, Microsoft, Not Your Average Joes, Pillar One Consulting, TownePlace Suites Gaithersburg by Marriott, Universities of Shady Grove, Whole Foods Market Kentlands In-Kind Supporters Andra & Jordan Abramson, Ann Taylor Loft, Artisans Gallery, AtoZ Directories, Baltimore Museum of Industry, Bike and Roll, Yongbok Bivin, Virginia Colten-Bradley, Brasserie Beck Kentlands, British Swim School, Cafe Rio, Elizabeth & Ryan Catlett, College Essay Prep, Dana Tai Soon Burgess Dance Company, Dogfishhead Alehouse, Erin Fitzgerald, Footlights, Frame Avenue Design, Cava Mezze Grill, The Chowdhury Family, Crepes-a-Go-Go, Famous Dave’s, The Gowarty Family, The Gray Family, Jennifer Haupt, Jennifer Hausdorfer, Leah Haworth, The Heller Family, Erica & David Hwang, Beverly Jefferson, Ikona Photography, Il Porto, International Spy Museum, KanKouran West African Dance Company, Heather & Jeff Katz, Goli Kaviani, The Kemp-Bliss Family, LA Fitness – Gaithersburg, Les Gals Activewear, Liberty Mountain, Brenda & Mark Lipowsky, Mayorga Coffee, Lori McKiernan, MBT Board of Directors, Mount Vernon, My Best Friend’s Closet, NBC4, Newseum, Panera Bread, Kristin Paolini, Susan & Yves Pelletier, Matina Phillips, Perfectly Pressed, &Pizza, Pinky & Pepe’s Grape Escape, Potomac Pizza, Profiles Hair Studio, Quench, Karlyne & Jay Reilly, Katerina Rodgaard, Tonie & Chris Rommel, Paula & Andrew Ross, Vanessa Rowan, Robin & Sarah Salomon, Salon Haven, Silpada - Kristin Paolini, Katie Smith, The Strucker Family, Studio Claire Pilates, StudioTen83, Susan Torin, Interior Touch, Tipo’s Toy Box, Tower Oaks Lodge, Vamoose Bus, Vasilis, Washington Capitals, Wasington Nationals, Wegman’s, Whitetail Resort, The Wilson Family, Yeatman & Associates, The Young Family, Zengo Cycle


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Fiscal Year 2015 Financial Position MBT is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts education organization. Thanks to our generous donors and patrons, MBT had a very strong year, and continues to grow our educational programs and service to the community. MBT is poised for a strong year ahead, and will continue the high quality of dance education, outreach and productions. MBT continues to uphold a tradition of debt-free operations and is stable, operating with positive net financial activity. Fiscal Year 2015 Financials Fiscal Year 2015 Revenue & Expense 641,602 2472 146,016 34,679 824,769 Unrestricted Revenue Earned: Interest: Contributed: Restricted: Total: Expense Program: Fundraising: General &Admin: Total: 678,218 10,571 111,044 799,833 Net Unrestricted Activity: -9,743 Net Restricted Activity: 34,679 Total Net Activity: 24,936


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From the Executive Director Much has changed since I arrived at MBT three years ago. The Academy has grown, we’ve added new dance disciplines, the productions have evolved, our outreach programs have become more significant to our everyday work, and most importantly, MBT has found a home. MBT staff and students spent the 2014/2015 year settling into our new space, which is still changing even now. During 2014/2015, we were able to install stage curtains in the black box, and just now in 2015/2016, we were able to install an initial phase of stage lighting, thanks in part to a grant from Montgomery County. These features lend a new professionalism to our presentations in the black box, allow for more rental options, and will enhance our dancers’ performance opportunities. I’m very proud of our continuing work on our new home facilities. I am grateful for our Board of Directors, who this past year undertook a major effort to rewrite MBT’s mission statement and strategic plan. Having been founded in 1989, MBT’s mission statement needed to be more relevant to our current focus points - the Academy, outreach and productions. The new mission statement is reflective of the unique and inviting company we are: “Providing arts opportunities for all through exceptional dance education, community outreach, and inspiring performances.” With a new facility, added staff, and renewed community efforts, MBT’s Strategic Plan neeeded to be freshened up as well. That plan continues to evolve just as the organization does, and I’m proud to have been a part of the process to evaluate and rewrite that plan. As our Academy and outreach programming has grown, so has our staff. Erin Fitzgerald has been a wonderful addition to our administrative and faculty team, and this year has taken on Registrar responsibilities in addition to other administrative work. We welcomed Maurice Watson to the administrative and faculty teams this year, and he has become a great help with the work of the company. The Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble has also grown and is taking on more community outreach performances this year. I am excited for the year to come. It has been an incredible learning expereince and a thrill to help Liz Catlett’s original fairytale - Becoming Sugar Plum - become a reality on our stage. I thank the Board of Directors for giving us the support we needed to commision an original score for this ballet. Original fulllength stories like this don’t come along often in ballet, let alone from companies our size. I am proud of Liz, our entire team, and our dancers, and look forward to opening night on March 18th. Our staff at MBT is dedicated beyond measure. I appreciate our team immensely - Liz, Brenda, Erin, Katerina, Maurice, and our amazing faculty and interns. MBT couldn’t have experienced this growth and success without each one of these talented individuals, as well as our volunteers, parents, committee chairpeople, and our Board. I extend grateful thanks to each of you. MBT is special because of you and your commitment to our art and to our mission. With sincere appreciation, Paula Ross Brenda Lipowsky and Paula Ross


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Our Expansion and Relocation was a Success! Thank you for your gifts & pledges to MBT25! Director’s Circle ($25,000+) Montgomery County, MD Sustainer Circle ($10,000 - $24,999) City of Gaithersburg, Maryland Drs. Erica and David Hwang Grand Jeté ($5,000 - $9,999) Nitsa and Timothy Angelos Pirouette ($2,500 – $4,999) Cheryl and Michael Heller Heidi and Jack Hsia Goli and Kamyar Kaviani Kally and Andrew Panagos Leslie and Joe Wallace Arabesque ($1,000 – $2,499) Anita and Eric Anderson Sally and David Catlett Heather and Jeff Katz Brenda and Mark Lipowsky Lucy Anne and Grant Lock Sanja and Tom Modric Pillar One Consulting Teresa Wu Relevé ($500-$999) Pascale Brady and Family Virginia Colten-Bradley and Michael Bradley, in honor of Ana Bradley Elizabeth and Ryan Catlett Joanne and Jerry Cohen Michelle and Ted George Ursula and John Heberlein Caroline and Chiang Mei Lori and John O’Keefe Tonie and Christopher Rommel Paula and Andrew Ross, in honor of Anna and Alex Ross Katie and Drew Smith, in honor of Mack Smith Texas Instruments Sharon and Michael Tharkur Plié ($50 - $499) Cindy and Jeff Anapolsky Molly Anapolsky Antezana & Antezana, LLC Monica Barion and Apollon Fanzares Colleen and Rick Bergeron, in honor of Jane and Ralph Smith Ebru Bozacioglu and Gregg Willhauck, and Sara Willhauck Madonna Calendar Clark Construction Heidi-Rose and Adam Creuziger, in honor of Kara and Rowan Ellen and Alan Cunningham DancEthos Patricia and Frederick Evans Gretchen and Dan Fitzpatrick Katherine and Carl Furr Fay and Preston Gnagey Margie Geotz Lora Green Pat Gross Mary Lou and Charles Haggard Mary and Paul Hlavinka Amie Hsia Kathy and Vernon Johnson, in honor of Cathy and Lydie Johnson Lynn Joslin Ellen Pam Katz Paula Landau Tony and Katie Lam, in honor of Sydney Lam Sandra Li and Chinlin Chai Valerie and Troy Luster Jennifer and David Macht Christine Mei Metro Metro & Associates Betsy and Jeff Miller Denise and Thomas Murphy Judith and Robert Murphy, in honor of Kayla and Fiona Murphy Not Your Average Joes Julie Novick and Michael Feshbach Susan and Yves Pelletier Jody Rosenblum Vanessa Rowan Robert S. Salomon, III Nancy Samit Ann and William Schlossenberg Swati Sil and Partha Chowdhury and Shreeya Chowdhury Denise and Michael Sinay Peggy and David Stroncek The Strucker Family Elsa Tung Laura Wilson Linda Youngentob Laurie Zavadil Significant In-Kind Support Anonymous Curt Allen Chad Older Contributor or Student Campaign Sponsor ($1 - $49) Anonymous Austin Katz Frannie and Dick Kessler, in honor of Anna Kessler Brenda Lipowsky, in honor of : -Gaby Vinick’s Bat Mitzvah -Molly Anapolsky’s Bat Mitzvah -MBT 2013 Graduating Seniors -Rachel Berman’s Bat Mitzvah -MBT at the 2014 County Executive’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts & Humanities Dana Lipowsky Diana Ludet Columbus Mack The Manikoth Family Dale A. Rubenstein Lynn Stahl Alice and Charles Wachter Lynn Stahl Alice and Charles Wachter MBT25 Capital Campaign Brought MBT to a New Home MBT’s Capital Campaign ended in December 2014, but you can still support MBT’s new home! Your gift makes a difference! Please consider a tax-deductible donation to our annual fund, which supports our facilities and operations, in addition to educational programs, scholarships, and productions. Naming opportunities and sponsorships remain available for many spaces in our building. Our students, Board of Directors, faculty, staff, volunteers and patrons thank you!


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M BT i s n ot ju st a d an c e a c a d e my. . . it’s a c ommunit y s e r v i c e . MBT brings the arts beyond our walls into our community. Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble dancers with students after a Cultural Arts Assembly at a local school. The Metropolitan Ballet Ensemble toured a new version of Carnival of the Animals, choreographed by Tyrone C. Walker, throughout 2014/2015. They visited several schools, senior centers, and community centers. They are currently touring with Stories of Dr. Seuss, an original short-length ballet choreographed by Elizabeth Catlett. 220 Perry Parkway, Suite 8 Gaithersburg, MD 20877 301-762-1757 twitter: @MBTDance YouTube: MetropolitanBallet1



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