University of Louisville Dance Academy
The University of Louisville Dance Academy will be closing its doors for the last time on June 30th. In our last several months of existence, we would like to celebrate the ULDA, its mission and its accomplishments.
It has been our honor to be affiliated with the ULDA and our students. That has been a privilege that has enriched our lives for these many years.
We hope that our students have learned as much from us as we have from them. Teaching is a sacred trust that we have taken seriously and endeavored to treat with respect. Our students shall be dearly missed but we have faith in them and know that they will move forward into rewarding and fulfilling lives.
As we close our doors we are bombarded with memories and thoughts of what the school's legacy will be. Recently a former student, Wendy Whelan, was named the assistant artistic director of the New York City Ballet. In 2016 Clinton Luckett, another former student, was named assistant artistic director of American Ballet Theatre. Suzanne Wilham, another former student, was the associate director of the Jubilee in Las Vegas. Former students have danced with American Ballet Theatre, the American Repertory Theatre, Complexions, the Dallas/Fort Worth Ballet, the Eugene Ballet/Ballet Idaho, Dance Kaleidoscope, Les Ballets Jazz de Montreal, the Louisville Ballet, Miami City Ballet, the Nashville Ballet, the New Jersey Ballet, the New York City Ballet and the San Diego Ballet. Students from the ULDA have been invited to study during summer programs at the Alvin Ailey School, the School for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, the Dance Theatre of Harlem School, the Harid Conservatory, the Houston Ballet Academy, the Joffrey Ballet School, the National Ballet of Canada School, the Orlando Ballet School, the Pacific Northwest Ballet School, the Pennsylvania Ballet School, the Rock School, the Royal Academy of Dance (the school for the Royal Ballet in London), the Royal Winnipeg School, the School of American Ballet (the school for the New York City Ballet), the San Francisco Ballet School and Walnut Hill. There are also numerous students who have gone on to major in dance, attend post graduate programs in dance, own studios and/or teach and choreograph.
However, as important as the accomplishments in the field of ballet are to the legacy of the school, equally important are the accomplishments of our many students that went into a vast variety of other pursuits. We have former students that are attorneys, hairstylists, massage therapists, nurses, occupational therapists, pathologists, physical therapists, physicians, parents, teachers... They take with them the discipline, self-motivation, self-reliance, work ethic and the knowledge that the world is of a scope much larger than their personal wants and needs. They are good citizens of the world working to make it a better place.
We are grateful to every parent who shared the development of their child with us. We are grateful to every student who shared their life and dreams with us. We are grateful to the SODA Board in all of its incarnations for your unwavering support. You all take with you our love, respect and profound gratitude.