Nashville Radio Show: Rejoice School of Ballet

Rejoice School of Ballet empowers youth to realize their potential by training, nurturing and celebrating dancers from diverse racial, socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds.

• Registering new students on Aug. 12
• Upcoming original ballet in February. Doing "The Little Engine that Could" Our dancers will spend the year studying the 7 C's of resiliency to prepare.

Each year Rejoice stages at least one ballet from the classical repertoire, or a completely original production, and in February 2020, we will embark upon a fresh, inspirational ballet written around the quintessential childhood story of perseverance and resilience, The Little Engine That Could. Considered by the National Education Association as one of the top 100 inspirational children’s books, this story of steadfast perseverance was chosen to motivate the at-risk youth involved in Rejoices programs because the story has great potential to resonate and inspire young people whose life circumstances remain challenging.

The “Little Engine” story will be considered and portrayed through the lens of the “7 Cs: The Building Blocks of Resilience,” developed by Ken Ginsburg, a pediatrician specializing in Adolescent Medicine and Director of Programs at Center for Parent and Teen Communication ( The 7 Cs are comprised of seven interwoven assets known to build strong, capable young people: confidence, competence, connection, coping, control, character, and contribution. Rejoices programming for all students will focus on the 7 Cs for 2019-2020.

Our original ballet will be written/choreographed by Gerald Watson, a Company Dancer with Nashville Ballet, and one of only a handful of African American male dancers in the US. Student dancers will portray the toys in the “Little Engine” story. Tentative plans include two wheelchair-bound youth dancers from Nashville Ballet’s special needs class who will perform the key role of engines in the “Little Engine” train.

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