The Ensemble

New Ballet Ensemble really includes all performers at NBE under the "ensemble" umbrella, from ages 6 to 30, integrating professionals with students in performances.

Professional trainees and graduates of the Trainee program, join with Teaching and Performing Artists to perform in all main stage production and in our community school program. Our original school shows engage and educate students, and sometimes recruit them for scholarships to the New Ballet School are. Professional ensemble members serve as Teaching Artists in the New Ballet School, instructing children from ages 3 to 18, and also in Shelby County Schools in special residencies and workshops.

Dedicated to creative youth development through dance, the New Ballet Ensemble is made up of a diverse group of dancers from different backgrounds who are fluent in ballet, modern, flamenco, jazz, and urban dance. New Ballet’s CEO and Artistic Director, Katie Smythe, works with the Ensemble on a daily basis.

Photo credits: Andrea Zucker Photography


Community partnerships are at the heart of the work performed by the Teaching and Performing Artists at New Ballet. Partners include, Shelby County Schools and Dunbar Elementary (Orange Mound), TEAM UP Memphis mentoring, Bridges Out of Poverty, Bridges, Girl's Inc, The Brooks and Dixon Museums, Rhodes College, and the University of Memphis. For the 2008/09 season, New Ballet partnered with Opera Memphis in La TraviataTreemonisha, and Faust; in 2010, Orpheus; 2011, Aida and in past seasons, performed in Porgy and Bess and Macbeth.

New Ballet Ensemble students and trainees have benefitted from partnerships with professional master teachers and choreographers such as, Christina Bernal (Ballet Master Teacher), Blakely White McGuire and Kim Jones of the Martha Graham Company past and present, Uri Sands and Toni Pierce Sands (formerly Ailey company and now Co-Directors of TU Dance), Elizabeth Corbet of Frankfurt Ballet and Francesca Harper, formerly of Frankfurt Ballet and Dance Theater of Harlem.


Intern Training Program

The Ensemble Intern Training program was established in 2005. Graduating students are given an opportunity to further their training on the professional level while training as teachers and, in some cases, attending college classes at the University of Memphis and Christian Brothers University. Since entry into the program, trainees have performed as Lincoln Center Institute performing artists and in schools throughout Memphis. Artists In Training attend on a company schedule, 30 hours per week and have the opportunity to graduate into the company or move on to University BFA programs with facilitation from Ms. Smythe and other mentors such as our guest teaching artists.


Teaching Artist Audition: July 22, 2017,  10am-1pm at Ballet Hispanico studios (New York City)

Callback interviews:  July 23,2017,  time TBD