The Charleston Ballet is the legacy of Belgium-born Andre Van Damme, an accomplished dancer in his native country, and the first star dancer of the Royal Opera. When he formed the company in 1956, he envisioned it to provide state experience in a professional atmosphere for West Virginia dancers and to create a greater appreciation for the art of ballet.
The troupe is the official West Virginia State Ballet, and is the pioneer among regional troupes in the United States. In 50 years, the company has enriched West Virginia’s cultural life, with hundreds of traditional and original ballets performed in its lifespan. The troupe is rooted to its community, spearheading scholarship programs in coordination with the American Academy Ballet to offer ballet studies for culturally disadvantaged children. The academy offers trainings to dancers on different disciplines: ballet, contemporary and folk. These classes are held during the school year, as well as during summer break.
If you’re interested to watch the Charleston Ballet’s performances, check out their schedule over at http://thecharlestonballet.com/program2008/program2008.html
The Charleston Ballet
822 Virginia Street East, Charleston, WV, 25301