Butler Ballet Summer Intensive

Join Butler Dance faculty, under the artistic direction of Marek Cholewa, for our pre-professional summer dance Intensive on the beautiful campus of Butler University. The 4-week intensive will have a classical ballet focus with additional classes in character, modern, jazz, pas de deux, pilates, and repertoire. It will conclude with a final performance in the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts on the last day of the Intensive. Please note: students must turn age 13 by the first day of the Intensive in order to be eligible to participate.

BCAS@butler.edu | 317-940-5500 | Butler Community Arts School Summer Camp Info

  • Due to the ever-evolving nature of the pandemic, all information is subject to change.
  • Participants agree to abide by all public health guidelines that may be in effect during summer 2023, including directives by local/state government, Butler University, CDC and American Camp Association.
  • At this time, all participants will be required to provide either proof of vaccination or a negative COVID test at the start of the Intensive.
  • While there are many unknowns in this ever-changing landscape, we are confident that we will provide a safe and educational experience for our participants.
  • March 1: Application deadline.
  • July 3–30: Summer Intensive dates

Apply here!

Pre-professional level students between the ages of 13 and 18 are eligible to participate. Students must be 13 years old by July 3.

All students are encouraged to apply early as space is limited. The deadline to apply and submit the $50 application fee is March 1.

  • A completed application is required which includes a full-length photo of the student en pointe in first arabesque (female identifying students) or in first arabesque (male identifying students) and a headshot.
  • Applications and photos will be reviewed for acceptance by our dance faculty. Admission decisions will be communicated within 3 weeks of submitting your application. Please note that winter break may affect this timeline.
  • Occasionally, video auditions may be requested in addition to a completed application form. This request will arrive via email after submitting the application form. Video auditions should consist of one classical variation (ladies en pointe).
Apply here!

Residential: $4,600 (includes room and board, 3 meals a day)

Commuter: $3,600 (includes daily lunch)

*A $50 non-refundable application fee is required at the time of applying

Payments can be made online by selecting “Make a Payment” on the BCAS homepage.

Need-based tuition assistance is available.  You may apply in the registration form or complete the separate Tuition Assistance Form.

In the event that a student accepted into the Intensive is no longer able to attend the Intensive, notification of withdrawal from the program should be submitted in writing to BCAS@butler.edu. For students withdrawing prior to June 1, all tuition fees will be refunded (excluding the $50 non-refundable application fee). There will be no refunds issued after June 1.

Injury policy: In the case of injury that prevents from beginning participation in the Intensive, a full-tuition credit will be provided for participation in the Intensive the following year (full-tuition as residential or commuter is determined based on which option was selected with the application). Documentation from a physician is required. All credit requests must be submitted via email to BCAS@butler.edu. No refunds or credits will be given after the start of the Intensive.

Housing is provided in Butler University’s Irvington House dorm, which is air-conditioned. The Intensive will have its own floor/wing. Using a ratio of 1:10, there will be Butler Ballet majors serving as residential counselors. There will also be a “dorm chaperone” in residence 24/7, as well as the year-round dorm staff.

More detailed scheduling information, what to bring, and where to report, etc. will be included with the Intensive information packet provided to all participants in early summer.  Please review our FAQ page for general details.

Class size is expected to range from 12–18 students per class in order to provide proper personal attention to each individual student as well as providing extensive room for technical and artistic growth.

Students will participate in a placement class on the first day of the Intensive. Faculty will assess and place students into appropriates levels for ballet technique, pointe, modern, jazz, and repertoire.

  • Ballet technique and Pointe will follow the Russian Ballet Academy system (Vaganova system) and students will be learning classical repertoire based on the Mariinsky Theatre tradition.
  • Modern will be based on Martha Graham and Paul Taylor techniques.
  • Jazz will be based on Simonson Jazz Technique, a contemporary/modern based jazz class that focuses on alignment and articulation within a challenging and diverse movement vocabulary.

If you have any further questions regarding the Intensive curriculum, please contact artistic director, Marek Cholewa.

  • Ballet class: Leotard and skirt (both dark solid colors, standard length skirt) with skin-toned tights. For ballet class you are welcome to use unitards.
  • Character class: Character skirt (length to the knee level) and character shoes.
  • Pointe and Repertoire classes will require pointe shoes, please bring a minimum of 3 pairs.
  • Modern class: Dress code similar to ballet technique classes with footless tights.
  • Jazz class: Leotard (any color), black footless tights or fitted jazz pants, bare feet. No baggy t-shirts, or loose fitting clothing.
  • Performance of classical repertoire: black camisole leotard with the opening on the back at the shoulder blades level.
  • Performance of the jazz piece: colored leotard and black footless tights.
  • For all technique classes and rehearsals, hair must be secured out of the face.

Please note that this schedule is based on the previous Summer Intensives.  Dates and schedule are subject to change.

Monday, July 3

  • Schedule TBA

Monday–Saturday, 9:00 AM–5:30 PM

  • All participants follow daily schedule of classes. Commuters arrive by 8:45 AM. Classes begin promptly at 9:00 AM.

Sunday, July 30


  • 11:00 AM: Performance (approximately 90 minute run-time) at Schrott Center for the Arts
  • 12:30 PM: Dorm check-out/departure

*Subject to change, based on the 2022 schedule

Monday through Saturday

  • 8:45 AM: Commuters arrive
  • 9:00–10:20 AM: Ballet
  • 10:25–10:55 AM: Pointe
  • 11:00 AM–11:45 PM: Ballet Repertoire
  • 11:45 – 12:45 PM: Lunch
  • 12:45–1:45 PM: Character/Pas de Deux/Variations/Pilates
  • 2:00–3:00 PM: Ballet Repertoire/Pilates (Classes end at 3:00 PM on Saturdays)
  • 3:15–4:15 PM: Modern
  • 4:30–5:30 PM: Jazz
  • 5:45–6:45 PM: Commuters dismissed at 5:30, Residential students go to dinner
  • 7:30–9:00 PM: additional coaching of the repertoire (if needed)

There will be a free, public performance on the last day of the Intensive in the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts, start time TBA. Performance duration will be approximately one hour. No tickets required.

Marek Cholewa (artistic director), Professor of Dance at Butler University

Rosanna Ruffo, Assistant Professor of Dance at Butler University

Plus others!  Check back as we get closer for additional information.

Is attending a college dance program’s Intensive  is right for you?  Take a look at this article from Dance Magazine’s January 2021 edition to learn about the potential benefits.  Our very own, Marek Cholewa is featured!

Please contact BCAS@butler.edu or 317-940-5500 with any questions regarding registration, housing, etc. For questions regarding Intensive curriculum, please contact artistic director, Marek Cholewa at mcholewa@butler.edu OR 317-940-9664.

*Please note that all information detailed here is subject to change. Any changes will be communicated to accepted students as soon as possible.

Take a look inside the Summer Intensive!