The Preprofessional Dancer Institute (PDI) is open to serious-minded, advanced dance students, ages 13 – 18, who demonstrate exceptional potential and readiness to take the next step in preparing for their dance careers. The program is limited to 100  students (split into two equal groups), so acceptance is limited to the most dedicated, motivated, and prepared young dancers.


Participants will be selected through an audition submission, including a recorded video, a personal statement, and references. PDI has an established scholarship program for New Mexico residents and dancers traveling from outside the state. Full and partial scholarship award decisions are based on a combination of financial need and merit. PDI is committed to reducing the impact of financial barriers on participation.

Audition Processing Fee

Auditioning students will be assessed a $95 processing fee at the time of submission. Dancers who submit their materials in full by November 30 will receive a 50% reduction and the fee will only be $47.50.


The cost of the Preprofessional Dancer Institute is $875 for the selective five-day program. Payment can be made in two equal payments - eight weeks apart. 

Cancellation Policy

No full refunds or credits will be issued for registered participants. An exception will be made for documented medical or health reasons due to an unforeseen injury or illness. For dancers with a medically documented injury or illness, 100% of the tuition will be refunded up to forty-five ) days prior to the start of the program. If the illness or injury is reported to the program director under forty-five days prior to the start of the program, a 50% refund will be issued, and the other 50% may be used as a credit for another program in the next twelve (12) months that is produced and owned by Francisco Gella Dance Works. In the case of any injury or illness, a documented note or letter from a licensed physician must be submitted before a refund, and/or credit will be considered.

Commitment Deposit

If admitted to the Institute:

 A 50% non-refundable deposit will be due by May 15th to secure your admission to the Class of 2023. The remaining non-refundable balance will be due by July 15th.

Scholarship Consideration and Deadline

A limited number of full and partial scholarships are awarded for especially deserving and financially challenged dancers. Scholarships will be allocated according to the combined consideration of both financial need and merit. The goal of our scholarship program is to remove financial barriers to participation for students with the most demonstrated need. We believe that talent is universal, but opportunity is not, and therefore we aspire to make this program as accessible as possible to all accepted students.

To apply for a scholarship, please complete the scholarship application, which is included towards the end of the online Institute audition form. Please note that the following is required for your scholarship application:

  • A written financial statement of need from you and your parent(s)/guardian(s).

  • A letter of recommendation from your studio or school director, or teacher verifying your financial need and your ability to succeed in the program.

  • The deadline to apply for scholarships is the same as the admission audition (April 1st).