April 03, 2020

Dear All - I visited the studio yesterday to pick up children's books to read online, and who did I see? Mr. Washington  . . . alone of course, at the desk awaiting a delivery of ipads so that three New Ballet TA's can upgrade their technology at home to present classes online. In the midst of our current united struggle, I am OVERWHELMED with gratitude for the New Ballet Team, and that includes YOU!

PLEASE CHECK YOUR EMAILS FOR CLASS TIMES. We have had low attendance, and worry that some may not be receiving the communications. Of course, this is a difficult time, and your family has many priorities. We just want you to know that the offering is available and that the class format begins this week.

We are grateful to the students for their feedback this past week during "Circle Time". Clearly, there is a feeling of sadness due to the loss of routine, exercise, emotional expression and connections to Teaching Artists and friends. We see our beloved students lightening up a bit with each connection. As we ramp up our work for online classes next week, I am . . .

 - grateful to YOU for your patience with the process and remaining flexible.

- grateful to donor parents who have stepped up to make extraordinarily kind offers to support the TA's and this process that includes added expenses for technology, as well as the resource of time.

 - grateful to Marc Willis and John Washington for leading the implementation of Zoom Pro.

- grateful to the program team for the design, including a format where the students see which studio they are in :)

- grateful to the entire team for remaining calm, carrying on, working overtime to implement curriculum online and to the TA's for carefully designing their lesson plans around the constraints of dancing at home.

Lastly, please make an effort to support the New Ballet virtual gala as you can through social media and sharing with friends and family, especially those who have been to the Nut Remix! We need the support to make it through these hard times. Understanding that gifts may be smaller than usual, we HOPE that the ability to add more participation will make up for (perhaps) modest gifts this year. 

  • 64% of our students reached weekly are from low in come households and dance at not cost to their families (thanks to New Ballet donors).
  • We raise 60% of our 1.7mm budget (thanks to our donors)
  • Tuition fees cover 28% of our annual expenses.

The most important thing I can relay in this letter today is gratitude and the abundance of it.

  • English– Thank you, Thanks

  • Hebrew– Toda (toh-dah’)

  • Ghanan- (pronounced 'me-daa-si')

  • Spanish– Gracias

  • French– Merci (Thank you very much= Merci Beaucoup)

  • Italian– Grazie

  • Japanese– (Domo) Arigato (ah-ree-gah'-toh) or written ありがとう

  • Chinese– do jeh, daw-dyeh

  • German– Danke sehr

  • Thai– Khop Khun Mak Kha

Love, Katie

March 23, 2020 (Updated 5:11pm)

Hello Families and Dancers,

By now you should have received two communications: Please also visit this page for Online Resources.

1) An email from Kathy Coburn with links to a first class for your level (Levels 2, 4, Youth Hip Hop and Jookin)

2) The weekly Saturday update parent mailing with examples of those classes included for your review.

Tomorrow is the final day that staff will be allowed in the studios. No employees have been in the buidling since Thursday other than Marc Willis. New Ballet was sanitized top to bottom with a coronavirus killing disinfectant this morning. Teaching Artists are wrapping up Ballet 1, 3, 5, Pointe, boys Technique, Fundamentals and 6/7 classes as we BY TOMORROW.

Moving Forward With Caution: A stay at home executive order was given by our Mayor effective March 24 6pm.

Our current plan (and this means as of today) includes:

1) "Circle time" with each class via Zoom - We will attempt these calls during regularly scheduled class time at least 1x per week. There is general understanding of our need for time to get this up and running. We hope that you agree  . . . and thank you!

2) 15 minute consultations with Teaching Artists for levels 4-7; by appointment - TBA

3) Creating more classes from home on Zoom as we are able to purchase the larger capacity Pro version

4) Individual evaluations sent by the Teaching Artists to their students so that they can apply during this time,

Please stay tuned here for latest updates. Many thanks for you support during this time. We are concerned about our students and are prioritizing our communication with them.

Gratefully, Katie

Updated March 20, 2020

Dear Families,

New Ballet is ready to send weekly resources for ballet study at home including lesson plans, videos, links and messages from your teachers. We are observing safety precautions in the building, including a professional COVID-19 sanitizing of all surfaces by Servicemaster.

Once these resources are distributed, we will create online check ins and Q and A with teachers. 

Reminder: We follow Shelby County Schools on closings (until further notice). 

Are you receiveing our weekly Family E-Newsletter? If not, sign up HERE!

Updated March 17, 2020

Dear New Ballet Families,

Amidst concerns regarding COVID-19, we have decided to temporarily close our studios. Our closure policy is aligned with Shelby County Schools, and our plan is to resume classes accordingly. We will keep you updated should anything change in the coming weeks. In the meantime, we will be exploring options for remote learning and will post resources on this page.

There have been no reported cases of COVID-19 within our organization. We are closing as a precautionary step in order to limit the spread of the virus, and to comply with the CDC’s recommendation for social distancing.

The Building Brighter Future’s Luncheon, which was originally scheduled for April 2, will be postponed and a new date will be announced in the coming weeks. Additionally, regarding the remainder of our spring events, decisions are being made alongside our venue partners, and we will keep you updated as plans become solidified. The health and safety of our students, families, and supporters is our number one priority.

For updates and to stay connected, visit our website at newballet.org or follow us on Instagram @new_ballet_ensemble and Facebook at New Ballet Ensemble and School. We will continue to send updates via email as well.

We appreciate your continued support during these uncertain times. We hope that you and your families are well, and we look forward to welcoming you back soon.

Best wishes,

New Ballet Staff

To prevent the spread of this illness or other illnesses, including the flu, please remind your children to:

  • Avoid touching their eyes, nose, and mouth,
  • Wash their hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds,
  • Cover their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing,
  • Keep children home when they're sick, and
  • See a doctor if you think you or members of your family are ill.