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City Center Ballet Gets Grants for Guest Artists

Lebanon — City Center Ballet recently received a $10,000 grant from The Jack and Dorothy Byrne Foundation and a $250 grant from New Hampshire Charitable Foundation’s Whit and Closey Dickey Fund

The Lebanon-based nonprofit will use the money to attract professional guest artists to the local stage.

“City Center Ballet does not have the necessary number of men (and for certain productions, women) to allow for the production of a full-length classical ballet,” Linda Copp, artistic director, said in a recent news release.

“Rather than allowing this obstacle to hinder the dancers’ experience of ballet, the company seeks professional dancers to supplement the cast,” she said in the release.

In addition to performing, guest artists commonly teach, “allowing the students to gain new insight into their dance technique and artistry,” Copp said.

When not teaching, artists take classes and rehearse alongside the students.

Those who pursue a career in dance benefit from the skills they learn and the connections they make, the company said. “Their relationships with guest artists can open up professional doors that remain closed to many.”

But, the company said, in order to meet its goals, more money will be needed.

“The artistic and technical challenges of training and educating dancers and creating ballets are only surpassed by the challenges of funding the ballet,” said Copp, who is currently working with board members to seek further grant and local support.

The semi-professional company produces classical and repertory ballets.

— Staff report