News: Ballet Theatre of Maryland receives funding from the National Endowment for the Arts

Image courtesy of Ballet Theatre of Maryland.

Ballet Theatre of Maryland to Obtain $10,000 Grant from the Countrywide Endowment for the Arts

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Ballet Theatre of Maryland is pleased to announce it has been accredited by the Countrywide Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to obtain a Problem America award of $10,000. This grant will aid BTM’s community outreach and arts education applications. This grant is one particular of 262 Obstacle The united states awards totaling $2.62 million that have been introduced by the NEA as part of its 1st round of fiscal yr 2023 grants.

“The Countrywide Endowment for the Arts is happy to help arts tasks in communities nationwide,” said NEA Chair Maria Rosario Jackson, PhD. “Projects these kinds of as this a single with Ballet Theatre of Maryland strengthen arts and cultural ecosystems, present equitable alternatives for arts participation and apply, and add to the health of our communities and our economy.”

According to BTM Creative Director Nicole Kelsch, “This job represents our dedication as an arts establishment to search outward towards the wellbeing of our local community. In many cases, arts education and learning can look accessible only to the most privileged. To counteract this, we experience liable for increasing obtain and inclusion for underserved communities in Anne Arundel County with lasting, prolonged-term systems. As we know from our personal activities, involvement in pursuits like ballet can make a important big difference in children’s social techniques, bodily fitness, and feeling of self-expression.”

The NEA award builds on BTM’s existing community outreach programs, which deliver less than-resourced students with dance courses as effectively as necessary provides these types of as sneakers and ballet barres. Recent beneficiaries have participated in classes by Annapolis Boys and Women Club, Gigi’s Playhouse, and other local community centers. On top of that, students will get tickets and transportation to attend performances by the professional organization.

To learn more about BTM’s performances, academy classes, and local community outreach, pay a visit to For extra info on other jobs incorporated in the NEA’s grant announcement, visit


Ballet Theatre of Maryland, started in 1978, is selected as Maryland’s leading expert ballet organization and conservatory and has a long historical past doing at venues all through the point out. The firm is comprised of 23 experienced dancers, 15 apprentices, and 17 trainees. Expert faculty customers of the Conservatory of Dance are present in their area, most with levels or certifications in dance instruction. The conservatory delivers a total curriculum of lessons in ballet, jazz, modern, tap, partnering, and conditioning while providing learners with experienced performance options. For a lot more information and facts about BTM, please visit or call (410) 224-5654.

Nicole Kelsch obtained her early schooling from Peter and Kristin Degnan at Ballet Northeast in Pennsylvania. She also acquired coaching from Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Milwaukee Ballet, Ballet Austin, Pennsylvania Governor’s University for the Arts, and Princeton Ballet. Nicole graduated from Point Park University in Pittsburgh, getting her Bachelor of Arts in Ballet Functionality in 3 decades. Upon graduation, she danced professionally with Columbia Metropolis Ballet, Atlanta Pageant Ballet, and Connecticut Ballet.

In 2006, Nicole joined The Ballet Theatre of Maryland as an apprentice below the route of Dianna Cuatto. She was promoted to Principal Dancer in 2008 and all over her profession was showcased as Clara and The Snow Queen in The Nutcracker, Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, the Firebird in The Firebird, Swanhilda in Coppelia, Juliet in Romeo and Juliet, as a Principal in Antony Tudor’s Continuo, the Principal Pair in Italian Symphonette, Titania and Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Desire, Magdalena in An American Southwest Carmen, Cinderella in Cinderella, Guinevere in Excalibur, Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, Pearl in The Little Mermaid, and has performed the Don Quixote Pas de Deux.

In 2008, after possessing served on the school for two years, Nicole became the Faculty Principal for The Ballet Theatre of Maryland Conservatory. She was named the Ballet Mistress for the business in 2015. Nicole retired from accomplishing in March 2020 and became the Inventive Director in July 2020. She properly led the corporation as a result of a complete 2020-2021 carrying out time at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, staging performances of Edward Stewart’s Dracula, Dianna Cuatto’s The Nutcracker, An American Southwest Carmen, and The Very little Mermaid.

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Kenneth Proto

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