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An experience I will cherish for life..!

23 Jun
The National Training Curriculum internship at American Ballet Theatre has been such a rewarding and fulfilling experience. I learned so much the past three months at ABT. ABT is an amazing institution and I consider myself extremely lucky for being able to work so close with such talented people.

This internship was also a great opportunity for me as I could experience what I learned at my NYU masters program in Dance Education in practice. The staff had good work ethic that kept the company functioning at its peak. I learned how emphasis on quality, sense of teamwork and responsibility are important principles to create a strong work ethic.

Last but not least, working at ABT and assisting the NTC manager and the Affiliate Exam Coordinator made me realize how much work goes into running the NTC program. I have great respect for my mentors and the skills I gained through this program I will cherish them for life. I would like to thank them and the American Ballet Theatre for giving me this chance.

Ester Migioni
National Training Curriculum Intern
Spring 2017

The Real Highlight was the Guest Speakers!

9 Jan

The National Training Curriculum internship at American Ballet Theatre has been an incredibly rewarding experience! Looking back on the semester I can’t believe how much I have learned in such a short time! American Ballet Theatre is a place I could have only imagined working for and getting to come to the office every morning felt like a dream come true! This internship was also a huge asset to me as a NYU Masters student in the ABT pedagogy program pursuing my certification in the National Training Curriculum and a degree in Dance Education.


The guest speakers that lectured during the internship program were a real highlight for me. They offered great insight to various departments of the performing arts administration world. For me, as someone seeking a job in performing arts administration but unsure about which path to pursue, this was extremely helpful and interesting. Often, the guest speakers would over lap with ones brought in to speak at my NYU Performing Arts Administration course. This was so beneficial to me because not only did I get a clearer understanding of what the role of a Controller, a Company Manger or The Manager of Institutional Support is but I also got to see what I was studying in action and how it applies to the real world! This created a very well rounded experience for me.


I felt very welcomed into the ABT family and I was so lucky to work under such great mentors, Meghan, Molly and Sonia. I have so much respect for how much work goes into running the NTC program and how dedicated they all are to their job! I feel as though I really have really gained skills that I will carry with me into the future and much greater insight when looking for employment in a performing arts institution!

Dasha Schwartz

National Training Curriculum Intern

Fall 2016

A (Not So Typical) Day in the Life

16 Aug

On June 22, I was a month into the ABT internship program and had just finished working my first National Training Curriculum Teacher Training session. I spent the day finalizing exams and certificates, preparing for the next training sessions in July, and chatting with the rest of the NTC staff about the previous night’s performance of Romeo and Juliet in anticipation of what was to come later that night. I was out the door of 890 by late afternoon and rushed over to the Met to begin what I knew would be a night to remember.


After meeting the rest of the ABT and Roundabout Theatre interns at the Met fountain, we went inside for a conversation with ABT General Manager, David Lansky. I spent the hour-long talk at the edge of my seat, absorbing every bit of company life that I could. As a longtime ballet dancer and enthusiast, I could not help but be enthralled by the stories that epitomized the old truism, “the show must go on.” Listening to the challenges that arise due to the nature of live performances and how the ABT dancers and staff overcome them gave me an even greater respect and love for this art form.


After the talk, we strolled between sets and stagehands and Alexandre Hammoudi’s pirouettes to get a view of what the company sees every day during the Met season. As I stood on the Met stage, I could only think of the history that stage has seen. From Mikhail Baryshnikov to Misty Copeland, the thought of sharing that space with so many who changed the ballet world left me speechless and floating among the clouds. That feeling and the view of the empty audience seats with the lavish chandelier hanging above are two of the most vivid memories I will carry on from this internship experience.

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As I ran to catch a train at the end of the night, I could not help but feel tremendously grateful for the magical day I just had. In addition to another great day in the education department, the talk with David Lansky, and the backstage tour, I also got to see my childhood ballet idol, Gillian Murphy, have a stunning and heartbreaking performance as Juliet. I felt like the luckiest intern in the world.

Although not every day at ABT was as glamorous as this one, it left me in a dream-like state for the rest of the summer, ready to take on more teacher training sessions and share my love of ballet with coworkers and soon-to-be certified teachers. I truly could not be more thankful for the experience and open doors ABT- and specifically NTC- has provided me this summer, and I know that I will forever look back fondly on my summer at America’s National Ballet Company.

Brittany Hurley

National Training Curriculum Intern

Summer 2016



19 Jan

Working at ABT for the past three months has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I began with little office experience and a moderate dance background – I’m leaving with a much greater knowledge about the administrative side of a dance company and with a greater knowledge of the dance world.

I have to thank my mentor, Meghan Love, for making my time at ABT so wonderful. She walked me through the various jobs I would be given over the course of my internships and knew that I would get the job done. I’m a very fast worker and have since earned the nickname “Speedy,” now a running joke between Meghan and I. I learned something new almost every single day of my internship, ranging from where to file incomes and expenses to creating certificates for the newly certified NYU students. I have become very familiar with the database of teachers, having gone through most teachers to update their information.

During this internship, I have also had amazing opportunities to meet and get to know the interns from Roundabout Theatre Company. As a theatre major, learning about this major company from people who work there was amazing. It was also great to be around other interns and learn about their future plans and we each got to show a bit of our world to each other. We were also able to have a backstage tour of the Metropolitan Opera House with ABT’s General Manager, David Lansky. It was incredible to stand on that stage and think about all of the famous singers, dancers, and actors who have stood there.

Working at ABT this fall has truly been a dream come true. This internship has taught me a lot and has given me experiences that I will never forget. I’m proud to be an intern at this amazing company. My time here has reminded me of my love for dance and I have fallen in love with it all over again. ABT, thank you so much for this extraordinary opportunity.

Abbie Levison

National Training Curriculum Intern

Fall 2016

Happy Memories and New Opportunities

10 Aug

I spent my senior year of high school blissfully working in and roaming the halls of 890 Broadway as one lucky twelfth grade apprentice/intern at American Ballet Theatre’s Educational Outreach Program. The office was always bustling with activity from the JKO students and your regular school year spectacles. Now as a dance major done with her first year at college, I wondered how I would fill my summer months back home in NYC. Looking to better my understanding of arts administration (and secretly wondering if ABT was as exciting in the summer as it is during the school year), it made complete sense to return to the home of a company that I had admired as long as I could dance, and a place that never failed to bring a smile to my face at the end of a long day.

As a previous Outreach intern, I didn’t know what to expect as I walked in this past May on my first day to become a National Training Curriculum intern. But after only a couple of days back at ABT, I regretted not stopping to take a look last year at the NTC desks that I had passed a hundred times.

The National Training Curriculum is a program taught at the JKO School and has been extremely successful in turning out highly sought after dancers. The program provides a remarkable and unique opportunity for dedicated dance teachers to learn how to train their students in ballet­—properly and healthily—from ABT’s own instructors, through a series of lectures, demonstrations, and exams. The ultimate goal is to walk away certified by ABT, and hopefully move on to become an Affiliate Teacher by then presenting your students for their own exams. I was fortunate enough to occasionally pass by or walk into a room where a lecture by Raymond Lukens or Franco De Vita (two of the brains behind NTC) was taking place and catch a tidbit of information about how to properly approach your turnout or placement at the barre.

In addition to being an intern for NTC, I was also a counselor for ABT’s five week Summer Intensive program in NYC (which allowed me to learn that yes, ABT is just as exciting and crowded during the summer as it is throughout the year). At the beginning of the summer, I stressed about how I was going to manage to do both, but being submerged in two different branches of ABT’s Education and Training Department entirely enriched my overall experience. The combination of the two programs complimented each other in a way I never expected, and culminated in my sudden enlightenment of another career path.

I never desired to become a dance teacher. Professionally dancing has always been my dream, but I never wanted to consider taking a teaching job. This summer, however, wholly changed my opinion of teaching. As an NTC intern I learned all about the administrative and business side of instructing, and as a summer counselor I had a more hands-on experience in personally dealing with children. The knowledge that I acquired from both made me realize that not only would I not mind teaching dance, but I would also look forward to it. As someone who had never considered taking the dance-teacher route for lack of faith in myself, I now welcome this unforeseen possibility for my future.

My whole adventure with ABT this summer has made for some happy memories. I am thankful for the opportunities that have been provided and for this unforgettable learning experience. What little bunhead doesn’t dream of working with American Ballet Theatre, and helping with the magic behind the curtain?

Julia Sandke

National Training Curriculum Intern

Summer 2015

5 Years Later…

2 Aug

Five years ago, I walked up to 890 Broadway with my hair in a slicked back bun and a bag full of pointe shoes. My mom kissed me on the cheek and sent me off to my first day of the American Ballet Theatre’s New York Summer Intensive. Everyday, I worked with world-renowned teachers on classical repertoire and daily technique. While the dancing was certainly my main focus, I couldn’t help but notice the office staff that occasionally appeared in the halls. Set apart by their lack of tights and freely styled hair, these young professionals represented a side of ballet that I’d never really known: arts administration. Instantly, a curiosity sparked in me to eventually take on a role in this behind-the-scenes aspect of dance.

Fast forward to this past May, and I’m still walking up to 890 Broadway, but this time with no bun or pointe shoes. This summer, I finally got to fulfill that administrative interest as an intern with ABT’s National Training Curriculum Department.

The NTC, a recent addition to ABT’s many education initiatives, seeks to spread the values of proper ballet training through a detailed syllabus and knowledge of injury prevention. The main way to broadcast this curriculum is through Teacher Training Sessions and furthermore, Affiliate Exams. The sessions involve multiple lectures, observations, and examinations for committed instructors who hope to come out of the training with a coveted ABT Certification. Once teachers have become certified, they can then move on to the Affiliate Exams, in which they present students taught under the NTC for evaluation.

Throughout my experience, one of my favorite elements was how the teacher trainings were able to connect people from not only the U.S. but also several different countries. Applications came in anywhere from Croatia to Italy, all from teachers eager to grasp the principles of the NTC. Once the sessions actually took place, the diversity I had read on paper appeared in the studios of ABT, and I couldn’t be more excited to contribute to a philosophy that was making its way across the globe.

This internship has also provided me with an incredible work environment over the summer. The staff members have all been tremendously welcoming, and I have learned so much from my mentor Meghan Love. I can’t believe how fortunate I was to be surrounded each day by teachers and stars of the ballet world that I admire so greatly. It’s not everyday you receive a guest lecture from former ABT principal Ethan Stiefel or have a casual chat in the office with Raymond Lukens.

I am extremely grateful to ABT for giving me the administrative experience I’d been dreaming about since I was 15. The company truly has an excellent focus on education, and I can’t wait to see the NTC continue to grow in schools worldwide.

Nicole Luo

National Training Curriculum Intern

Summer 2015

A view from my desk!   A photo gallery of every certified NTC Teacher.

A view from my desk! A photo gallery of every certified NTC Teacher.

Why I Love Ballet

11 May

What is life?  What is art?  What is a dancer?  American Ballet Theatre reminds us why we live, love and express… ­When one enters the doors of the training building on Broadway, one is instantly reminded why it is we became a dancer, and a lover of the art form.  And why it is we decided to leave so many other opportunities behind so that we might have the opportunity to pursue this passion, this grace that is often so intangible and yet there it is… lingering, waiting for us to pursue it.

Even the doorman of the building was once a dancer with dreams and even he is so loyal that he stays there and continues to be an integral part of the whole, keeping the dancers safe, so that the vision may continue.  With dignity, he leads each dancer or artist who enters the building into the ancient creaking elevator where one might see a well known company dancer, who may give you a hint of a smile and a glimmer in their eyes and you get chills remembering who has been in this very same building – Mikhail Baryshnikov, Gelsey Kirkland, Natalia Makarova, just to mention a few… some of the very best ballet dancers who ever existed in the world danced in these very same studios, changed in these very same dressing rooms and pursued their own dreams and passions.

Growing up in Colorado, I used to be able only to read about these stars of the ballet and to watch videos, dreaming of what they might experience, see, learn, contribute… And now, here I am, after my career as a dancer has already ended.  Yet, I have come to ABT to see if there might still be some glimpse or glimmer here of what I dreamed of as a child and even as a professional, here for me to grasp and bring into the future.

I am constantly reminded of why I love ballet when I walk the halls of ABT, as an intern, a teaching assistant and an ABT- NYU Graduate Student in ballet pedagogy.  The sounds of the live piano playing music for rehearsals and ballet classes, the voices of teachers and coaches echoing words of encouragement and artistry, glances of world renowned dancers rehearsing, and up and coming talent in the school and studio company…  The inspirational words of Raymond Lukens in our NYU courses…  I at once felt at home and felt my ideas and ideals for ballet mesh with the vision and leaders of ABT.  And then, there was an amazing lecture for the interns, given by the Chief Executive Officer and former company dancer of ABT, Rachel Moore.  Her life and professional pursuits were incredibly inspiring to hear about first person.  I also selfishly felt as though she was speaking directly to me, about her goals to encourage up and coming young female choreographers, and the need for choreographers who are trained in both ballet and acting.  It is certainly a testimony to her gift for public speaking, when she can make a listener feel she is speaking to that person directly.  And such is the gift of American Ballet Theatre.  They know how to reach the heart and soul of their audience, dancers, students and anyone who comes in contact with a professional or school performance, or with some other component of their massive outreach efforts in Project Plié, public school outreach or teacher trainings…  And so, one walks away with a lingering sense of more to come, and hopes for the future, looking forward to what is next.

Thank you, ABT, for your constant inspiration that helps to push us toward our dreams and goals.

Anna Duvall

Spring 2015

National Training Curriculum Intern

Watch a Clip From ‘American Ballet Theatre: A History’ (Exclusive)