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Francisco Gella’s annual Preprofessional Dancer Institute (PDI) offers serious-minded and highly-motivated, aspiring dancers the opportunity to hone their skills and further prepare themselves to enter the world of professional dance.  Over this 5-day program, an intimate group of no more than 75 dancers ages 12-18 selected by the program faculty will work intensively with acclaimed teaching artists Francisco Gella and Julie Friedrich to elevate their technique, broaden their range of stylistic diversity, and explore and refine their creative voices. Additional workshops, panels, and personal sessions with experienced PDI faculty, as well as professional dancers and company directors, will empower participants to understand their professional options and prepare to thrive in their careers while also maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

This program offers intimate training and exposure in concert dance (ballet, modern, contemporary), show dance (Broadway and Las Vegas), commercial dance (Hollywood) and improvisational techniques, as well as pointe, men’s, and partnering. As the larger group is split into two concurrently running smaller ones, small class sizes allow participants the benefit of personalized attention, while a rigorous and varied training schedule lifts dancers to meet the profession’s high expectations of endurance, focus, and adaptability.

The Preprofessional Dancer Institute will bring students in contact with dancers and artistic staff from the collegiate and professional dance worlds. This allows emerging professionals to engage in open conversations about their career options and the best avenues and strategies for pursuing their goals. Experts in college dance programs – with knowledge of curriculum, expectations and the admissions process – will provide insights into the how to get ready for BFA and BA programs. PDI alumni have gone on to be accepted into some of the finest collegiate programs in the United States, and recognized by the National Young Arts Foundation Awards.

Aspiring professionals ages 12-18 will accomplish all of this through Francisco’s positive, nurturing and challenging philosophy of cultivating holistic dancers who pursue excellence in mind, body, and spirit. Participants will form a community in which members feel challenged and supported. All of this in beautiful Santa Fe, New Mexico, one of the country’s leading tourist destinations and cultural epicenters!