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May 26th, 2021

Teaching and Performing Artist Apprentice:

View full job description HERE.

View full program description HERE.

Organization Description:

New Ballet Ensemble and School (NBE) is a Creative Youth Development Program focused on setting high expectations for young people, encouraging positive risk taking, promoting leadership development, and offering real world opportunities to contribute to social change.

The organization’s mission is to bring together children from all backgrounds by providing a professional standard of dance training, regardless of the ability to pay. Using conservatory training as a model, NBE instills knowledge of West African dance, Hip Hop and Flamenco alongside Ballet training so young people have access to the disciplines present in BFA programs today.

NBE was awarded the 2014 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award from the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, First Lady Michelle Obama (Chair), recognizing the program for using engagement in the arts and the humanities to increase academic achievement, graduation rates, and college enrollment. The award also recognizes NBE for improving literacy and language abilities, communication and performance skills, and cultural awareness. NBES has been featured in the NY Times and prominent Dance publications, and has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts. NBES is the home of dance sensation, Lil Buck.

Position Summary:

The primary responsibility of a Teaching and Performing Artist Apprentice is to develop as a dancer, training alongside the NBE Teaching Artists, Guest Master teachers and Choreographers. The TPAA takes daily company classes following a schedule set by Associate Artistic Director and is not charged any fees for these classes. Other areas of involvement will include; performance rehearsals, performing in school productions, assisting in the art of teaching or leading a class (depending on level), performing in community productions, attending training with the Artistic team and other administrative duties as assigned.

This position’s work schedule and requirements are customized based on the availability of the applicant, areas of growth and their own personal and professional goals. This position is a great opportunity for an individual looking to deepen their knowledge in dance education & performing arts at no cost for the participant.

Responsibilities:

● Teaching and Learning Responsibilities:

  • Assisting a lead Teaching Artist and/or leading a class (depending on Apprenticeship level)
  • Support a safe learning environment for all participants and artists
  • Participate in pre-plan and post-planning meetings with teaching artists, NBE staff, and mentors
  • Commit to and support ongoing professional development as an arts practitioner and educator and to participate in NBE community events
  • Always provide positive behavior management
  • Support the supervision and ensure the safety and welfare of participants at all times. Support students in being engaged and create a classroom culture of respect & participation
  • Exhibit appropriate behavior for an intergenerational space and accept and embrace the role as a mentor and role model to students, school staff, and fellow Teaching Artists

● Performance Responsibilities:

  • Train with and work alongside master teachers and choreographers in the NBE family including university professors, artists from the Martha Graham company, former William Forsythe and Alvin Ailey company and Broadway veterans
  • Prepare and train to potentially participate in 2 to 3 Main Stage performances annually and in school and community performances through the year
  • Expected to openly discuss their goals and aspirations, so that NBE can provide professional development opportunities

● Administrative Responsibilities:

  • Adhere to NBE guidelines & policies and to those of the facility, reporting any incidents or problems as outlined to NBE policy
  • Work to ensure that NBE spaces and classes are welcoming and inclusive to all youth and their family members
  • Attend the end of semester Evaluation Meetings with the supervisor o Maintain collaborative, confident and clear communication with the supervisor
  • Check emails regularly and respond to communication efforts by the supervisor in a timely manner, at least within 24 hours
  • Attend teaching artist professional development sessions monthly
  • Perform other duties as assigned

General Studio Expectations and Behaviors:

● Attending classes and rehearsals alongside students:

  • Apprentices are expected to model leadership at all times, modeling respect, attentive behavior and appropriate classroom attire
  • Any questions as to what constitutes professional behavior will be welcomed by staff and supervisors, and dancers should always feel free to inquire.

● Rehearsal Expectations:

  • While acknowledging and supporting our non-hierarchical culture, all dancers and students respect the authority of the director of any rehearsal, (including each and every teaching artist who may be assigned a leadership opportunity).

● Attending company class:

  • Apprentices are expected to attend morning class, monitoring if unable to participate due to injury or illness.
  • Timely arrival for class is fully expected and noted.

● Additional Expectations:

  • NBE workplace policy requires all employees to report any workplace concerns to the direct supervisor by making an appointment.
  • NBE leadership supports an anti-gossip environment, and takes measures to ensure the wellbeing of all staff, including listening to direct and honest feedback in an open caring environment.
  • NBE policy requires full disclosure of romantic relationships between co-workers, brought to the attention of the employee’s direct supervisor. Any interference with operations or organizational culture arising from the relationship will not be tolerated and is grounds for termination of one or both employees
  • Adherence to Memphis Child Advocacy rubrics is mandatory

Minimum Qualifications, Knowledge, and Skills:

  • Teaching and Performing Artists Apprentice must be 18 years old
  • High school diploma or equivalency
  • Strong commitment for learning and developing as an Artist and Dancer
  • Effective interpersonal skills necessary to interact with management, staff, and clients (students & parents/guardians)
  • Strong desire and willingness to learn and grow as a young adult and pre-professional dancer
  • A strong commitment to the mission, goals and work of New Ballet Ensemble, including our developing different styles of dance
  • Ability to work weekend and afternoon hours with a flexible schedule
  • Pass a DOJ fingerprint screening and background check
  • Commitment to working with people from a variety of different ethnic, socio-economic, educational, religious, sexual orientation and generational backgrounds
  • Proficient computer skills, especially using Microsoft Suite and Google Suite of applications

Application Process:

Applicants for apprentice positions will be required to submit a cover letter indicating why they are a good fit for the program, a resume, and complete an application. Submit these materials to careers [at] newballet [dot] org for consideration.

If advanced in our process to round 2, applicants are required to audition either by submitting a videotape or dancing live in our studio, and participate in a panel interview either remotely or in person. Some Applicants may be required to teach a lesson depending on the level of apprenticeship pursued.

Apprenticeship Program Description:

Built on the historical guild system of mastery training, the NBE Teaching and Performing Artist Apprenticeship Program (TPAAP) delivers a critical mix of training, teaching and performance opportunities as paid apprentices advance over a multi-year period, depending on their experience and starting point in the program.

The TPAAP is designed for talented, recently graduated high school students, in-college students, or recent college graduates who do not yet qualify for a Teaching and Performing Artist position due to lack of experience and pedagogical training. The program welcomes promising applicants who want to create an immediate dance career with support from NBE. Program highlights include; free professional dance training, paid work-time, professional development stipend for both internal and external trainings and workshops, and a health insurance stipend for those uncovered through a family health insurance plan.

A key component of the TPAAP is mentorship by guest artists of the highest caliber, including international principal artists, honored faculty at colleges and conservatories, and innovative choreographers and directors. These distinguished masters challenge and stretch the trainees in ways that develop technical proficiency, artistic expression, and life skills that are relevant to any professional career. Trainees also earn certifications through national partnerships, participate in professional arts associations, and attend national conferences where they connect with peers.

Program Tenure:

The program is designed to be a comprehensive, four-year program with exceptions for early career dancers who have already attained some educational and/or professional experiences. Each dancer accepted into the program will be evaluated and classified as an Apprentice 1 through Apprentice 4, with Apprentice 4 being the most senior position.

Program Benefits:

  • Professional salary – Apprentices will be offered a professional salary based on the administrative work, teaching, and performance and rehearsal schedule of each participant.

  • Free daily class – A daily morning dance class is held for all apprentices and teaching/performing artists. This class is mandatory, a part of the overall schedule, and is provided at no charge. Additional dance classes and trainings are also available to Apprentices throughout the day, which could be included in the development plan, and taken at no charge.

  • Professional development stipend – Each apprentice will work with the Artistic team to create the appropriate training plan and schedule. If a professional development session is outside the work agreement, compensation will be included in the stipend. If professional development is assigned on an off-contract week, NBES will pay a stipend, travel expenses, accommodation and per diem.

  • Health care stipend – If an apprentice is unable to secure health insurance through their family, NBE will offer partial support for a health insurance plan that the apprentice chooses.

Apprentice Development:

Each apprentice will be further evaluated and work with the Artistic and program team to design a custom program that advances their professional and career goals. There are four major areas of opportunity each apprentice will engage in: live performance, teaching, artistic skill, teaching skill, and workforce development; mentoring.

Area of Opportunities Include:

Live performance:

  • Three annual NBE mainstage performances including Nut Remix, Springloaded, and Summerdance
  • School performances (school tours, both live and virtual)
  • Special events
  • Studio and classroom teaching
  • Observing in a classroom
  • Assisting in a classroom
  • Leading in a classroom

Artistic skill, teaching skill, and workforce development:

  • Addresses teaching skills and proficiency; includes evaluations and performance reviews
  • Addresses dance skills and artistic proficiency skills; includes evaluations and performance reviews
  • Addresses professional and organizational behaviors, workforce development skills and financial literacy; includes evaluations and performance reviews

Mentoring:

  • Mentoring workshops (attend to apply learn mentoring skills) o 1 to 1 mentoring (?) as mentees
  • Group mentoring (young men’s/young women’s) as mentors
  • Mentoring of NBE dancers

Required Trainings (minimally must participate):

  • National Dance Institute “Fundamentals of Teaching”

  • Child Advocacy

  • Red Cross safety training

Additional Training Opportunities Will Include:

  • National Dance Institute, NYC (NDI) additional courses
  • American Ballet Theater (ABT) teacher training certifications

  • Dance Education Lab (DEL) certifications

  • Mentoring workshops

  • Workforce development workshops, communications, culture and workflow workshops

  • Nutrition and health workshops, including both physical and mental health workshops

  • Early childhood development and childhood development workshops

  • Youth development workshops

  • Trauma-informed care workshop

  • Implicit bias workshop

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