Project D.A.N.C.E

Diversity supports Accepting & Nurturing Community Equality

Eight years ago after several conversations with African American mothers in our community who had daughters who wanted to take ballet, we began Project D.A.N.C.E., an inclusive outreach program to help nurture students of color in our community. We reached out to the Meeting Street Academy, located in downtown Spartanburg, to begin a partnership with a vision to support students of color with yearlong ballet lessons. Project D.A.N.C.E. focuses on learning life skills such as respect, dedication, responsibility, perseverance, self-esteem, honesty, confidence, and resilience in concert with the highest of quality ballet training. Diversity and inclusivity are key to strengthening cultural relationships in our community.
The program has grown over the past six years to support well over 26 dancers. These young students share the desire to train in dance each week, to hone their skills and to develop meaningful and useful life skills. Since the inception of the program, we can now support 12 students on full annual scholarships for Project D.A.N.C.E. Our goal is support 20 students during our 2021/2022 season.
The scholarships for Project D.A.N.C.E. are funded by generous community members, leaders, businesses and foundations to support these students to follow their passion for ballet. We are forever grateful to these community members, leaders, businesses and foundations who share our vision for this programming. Project D.A.N.C.E. students and parents thank you for your passion, desire, and commitment. Community members, leaders, and donors we thank you. 
  • Susu and George Dean Johnson, Jr. (2015)
  • Bill and Valerie Barnet (2015)
  • Sam's Club (2015)
  • The Episcopal Women of the Church of the Advent (2016)
  • Walmart Foundation (2017, 2019,2020)
  • Dr. and Mrs. Julian Josey (2017)
  • Ms. Lindsay Webster (2018, 2019, 2020)
  • Mrs. Linda West ( 2018)
  • Purpose Financial (2019/2020)
  • Walmart Foundation ( 2020/2021)
  • Johnson Management, LLC. (2020/2021)
  • Colonial Trust, Co. ( 2020/2021)

If you are interested in Project D.A.N.C.E and would like to help with this scholarship program, you may donate to the program by clicking here. $531 a year will support one dancer for a full year of dance lessons. As a sponsor of a student of Project D.A.N.C.E.

  • Your sponsorship is tax-deductible
  • We invite you to meet the dancer and his/her family (This opportunity is on hold due to COVID-19)
  • We invite you to observe your dancer/dancers take lessons in our studio (This opportunity is on hold due to COVID-19)
  • We invite you to attend your dancer's end of the year dance demonstration in May



Center for Dance Education

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Ballet Spartanburg

Carlos Agudelo, 2023 SC Governor's Award for an Individual

Ballet Spartanburg's Artistic Director, Carlos Agudelo, was awarded the South Carolina Governor's Award from the South Carolina Arts Commission on May 23, 2023, at the Chapman Cultural Center. The award was presented by Mr. David Platt, Executive Director of the South Carolina Arts Commission. "We recognize the unparalleled energy, enthusiasm, devotion and love for dance that Carlos has gifted to our community out of his passion for all to experience the arts for the past 32 years. We are overjoyed that Carlos has been recognized by the South Carolina Arts Commission, " Teresa S. Berline, Executive Director. "The South Carolina Arts Commission is an extraordinary organization in our state which promotes and advocates opportunities in the arts which values equality, access, diversity and inclusion. Ballet Spartanburg is honored by the support of the South Carolina Arts Commission and the recognition of Carlos Agudelo."

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