The Philadelphia Youth Ballet

The Philadelphia Youth Ballet

The Philadelphia Youth Ballet (PYB) was founded in the fall of 2011 to inspire dedicated young dancers by providing them with a professional training environment and additional performance opportunities. PYB rehearsals and performances present an opportunity for young dancers to develop their artistry and build confidence, enhancing the technical precision demanded in their daily technique classes.

PYB members perform in the Nutcracker, their own Spring Concert, and the Annual Spring Showcase. We hope/plan to be able to participate in outdoor, in-person community events when it is deemed safe. Details on each of these performance opportunities as well as some FAQs are below.

Community Engagement

PYB members will share a message of hope, perseverance, and dedication with our community during these challenging times.  We hope/plan to be able to participate in-person community events when it is deemed safe.

PYB members perform in the Nutcracker, their own Spring Concert, and the Annual Spring Showcase. We hope/plan to be able to participate in outdoor, in-person community events when it is deemed safe. Details on each of these performance opportunities as well as some FAQs are below.

Nutcracker

All Philadelphia Dance Academy ballet students age 5 and older have the opportunity to audition for our annual production of the Nutcracker. Philadelphia Youth Ballet members must participate in the Nutcracker. Most Nutcracker rehearsals are held on Saturday afternoons (typically 1:30pm – 6:30pm) from early September through mid-December (we are off Thanksgiving weekend). We have an occasional Sunday afternoon rehearsal for some dances. Students may not miss more than 1 rehearsal. 

Annual Spring Concert

Rehearsals for the Spring Concert begin on Saturday, January 8.

We expect The Spring Concert to be a live in-person event scheduled for Sunday, February 27.

Mandatory Dress Rehearsal is scheduled for Saturday, February 19.

  • Rehearsals will start no earlier than 1:30p and will finish no later than 6:30p.
  • Most rehearsals will be on Saturday afternoon but there will be several Sunday rehearsals due to the abbreviated rehearsal period.
  • Masks are required for all participants at all times during rehearsals until further notice.
  • Rehearsals will be held in-studio at the Old City location.  
  • Students may have one rehearsal absence.
  • The PYB participation fee is $330 and includes a $30 photo fee for digital downloads of performance photographs.  The PYB participation fee is in addition to the Nutcracker fee and will be automatically charged on Monday, January 3.

Annual Spring Showcase

At the end of each school year, PYB presents excerpts from classical story ballets as part of The Philadelphia Dance Academy’s Spring Showcase.

Past Community Events and Festivals

PYB performs regularly in Philadelphia and the surrounding community.  Each time we book a community performance, an email is sent with the rehearsal and performance details.  Please complete the Participation Confirmation form by the deadline so we can plan the casting and performance program. The ensemble also holds periodic community events and seminars. PYB members have performed at:

  • Fifty Shades of Purple Arts Against Bullying
  • Telemundo62 & The Franklin Institute’s Día del Niño
  • National Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington, D.C
  • South Street Festival
  • Welcome America 4th of July Celebration
  • Old City Fest
  • Fitler Square Festival
  • Taney Park Festival
  • Liberty Place Tree Lighting
  • RiverRink Tree Lighting
  • Headhouse Square Winter Wonderland
  • LOVE Park’s Christmas Village

Past Collaborative Projects

Drexel University: ongoing collaboration – PYB members audition to be part of works choreographed by guest choreographers from Drexel University. Works are presented in the Annual Spring Concert.

Spoke the Hub Modern Dance Ensemble, Brooklyn, NY: April 2013 – Dancers from the Brooklyn-based studio visited Philadelphia and participated in our spring concert. PYB then traveled to Brooklyn to perform in Spoke the Hub’s Young Artists’ Workshop.

Play On, Philly! and Live Connections: May 2013 – PYB members partnered with young musicians from Play On, Philly! and Live Connections to present a student-produced original work at World Café Live as part of their Classic Alive! Series.

ArteProyecto, Guatemala: April 2014 – In the spring of 2014 we hosted Guatemalan youth dance ensemble ArteProyecto for a week of classes that culminated in a showing of work by both companies.

Downtown Performing Arts Center, Lambertville, NJ: June 2014 – 2014 featured another performance exchange, with DPAC students joining our spring concert and PYB members performing with DPAC at the Washington Crossing Open Air Theatre.

PYB Student Choreography Project: March 2015 – The 4th Annual Spring Concert was the first one to feature work by PYB members. Those who expressed interest in choreographing were placed into groups of 3 and worked for weeks on setting work on fellow PYB members.

Intergenerational Project: March 2016 – Judith Sachs of Anyone Can Dance facilitated a movement exploration that crossed generations.

FAQs

Students age 8 and older enrolled in level Ballet 3/3X and up are welcome to audition.  Auditions are held annually on the last weekend of August.  The 2022 audition dates are August 27 and 28.

Ensemble members are required to take a minimum of two ballet technique classes weekly, up to six technique classes weekly for older students.   PYB members are required to enroll in Theater Dance and/or Contemporary dance in addition to their required ballet classes.  Ensemble members are also required to train over the summer, although that training does not need to be here at PDA.

Annual auditions occur each Summer on the same day as our annual Nutcracker audition. Dates are posted in advance.  Auditions are typically the last weekend in August.  Please be sure to fill out both the Nutcracker and PYB audition forms.

Students who love to perform and are willing to commit to the PYB Saturday rehearsal schedule in addition to taking a minimum of two technique classes per week. IMPORTANT: Membership in PYB is a year-long commitment. Students may not miss more than one Nutcracker rehearsals or one rehearsal in the spring (after Winter Break, PYB returns to Saturday afternoon rehearsals to prepare for their Spring Concert). Members are expected to act as role models for younger students here at PDA. A mature, respectful attitude is expected at all times.

Company members learn a varied repertoire of classical ballet, contemporary, and other styles, which allow them to develop the versatility that is required for a career in the performing arts. When it is deemed safe, they have regular performance opportunities in a wide variety of venues, from small informal festivals to large professional theaters. The diversity of these experiences fosters confidence and improves performance skills. As company members, students learn the intrinsic reward of working together towards a common goal and seeing the results of their hard work and discipline in each successful performance.

PYB annual membership fee is $630 ($330 plus the $300 Nutcracker fee). The performance/membership fee covers: the cost of costumes, backdrop and prop rentals and purchases, theater rental, theater technical staff, professional guest artists, program printing, faculty for weekly rehearsals,  access to all professional photos taken through the year and the digital download of the Spring Concert.