Ballet Hispánico School of Dance


Celebrating nearly 50 years of dance and culture, the Ballet Hispánico School of Dance is a leading center of excellence in dance education accessible to the community at large. 



Michelle Manzanales - Director, School of Dance

Before being named Director of the School of Dance in December of 2016, Michelle Manzanales was in the midst of her seventh season as the Ballet Hispánico Company Rehearsal Director & Artistic Associate. She first began working with Ballet Hispánico CEO & Artistic Director, Eduardo Vilaro, in 2003 as a dancer for Luna Negra Dance Theater of Chicago, where Manzanales later became Rehearsal Director in 2006 and eventually served as Artistic Director from 2009-2010. A choreographer and dance educator originally from Houston, TX, Michelle has over 25 years of teaching experience serving on the faculties of Ballet Hispánico, Lou Conte Dance Studio (home of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago), University of Houston, Rice University, Houston Metropolitan Dance Center, Regional Dance America, Festival de Danza Cordoba-Youth American Grand Prix, as well as master teacher for numerous other dance studios, schools, and college dance programs nationwide and internationally.

 The Ballet Hispánico School of Dance trains eclectic, versatile dancers who stand out in a competitive professional environment for their mastery of the classical ballet tradition, contemporary techniques, and Spanish Dance. Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance, the School empowers students by offering a holistic approach to movement discovery, including pre-professional training and classes for the novice dancer. The School also offers adult classes and workshops that provide cultural enrichment and the joy of dance to everyone.

School Year 2019-20
Register and learn more about our three school divisions:

Los Pasitos Early Childhood Program (ages 2-5)
Encuentros Open Class Program (ages 6-18)
La Academia: Pre-Professional and Professional  Program
(ages 7-23)


Alumni of the School have gone on to prestigious conservatories such as The Juilliard School and Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts; to careers in theater (Nancy Ticotin), dance, music & film (Jennifer Lopez), and television (Michael DeLorenzo), as well as careers with leading dance companies such as Ballet Hispánico, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Paul Taylor, ABT II, San Francisco Ballet, Flamenco Vivo, and María Pagés Compañía.

"Ballet Hispánico offered a variety of the techniques that prepared me far beyond my imagination. It taught me to be the dancer I am today." -Linda Celeste Sims, Principal Dancer, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

"We have terrific talent on Broadway, film, and TV who were trained at Ballet Hispánico." -Broadway star Chita Rivera

Ballet Hispánico is an accredited institutional member of the National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD).

Major funding for the Ballet Hispánico School of Dance is provided by the Jerome L. Greene Foundation.

Dedicated support for the School of Dance is provided by Jody and John Arnhold, Con Edison, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, and The Ted Snowdon Foundation. Public support is provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. The School of Dance is also funded, in part, by the Ballet Hispánico Endowment Fund and patrons of Ballet Hispánico's Annual Spring Gala. We thank all of our other individual and institutional donors for their generosity.

*Ballet Hispánico’s facility offers full accessibility to those with disabilities.

 Photo (c) Hayim Heron

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Ballet Hispánico 2018-19 from Ballet Hispanico on Vimeo.