The Raydean Acevedo Colorado Ballet Academy

Our Academy is the premier training institution in the state, with programming sought after by serious ballet students the world over

Photo by Francisco Estevez

Before the world is their stage, they train right here in Colorado.

Founded in 1951 by Lillian Covillo and Freidann Parker, Colorado Ballet Academy is the official school of the Colorado Ballet. Under the leadership of Colorado Ballet Artistic Director Gil Boggs and Academy Director Erica Fischbach, CBA is the premier training institution in the state, with programming sought after by serious ballet students worldwide.

Located in eight state-of-the-art studios near downtown Denver, students train alongside the professional Company with faculty who have lived highly successful careers with renowned companies such as American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Joffrey Ballet and Colorado Ballet.

Colorado Ballet Academy’s curriculum is grounded in formal classical ballet technique and follows the traditional classical sequence of training intended to increase each student’s technical skill, stamina, and artistry. Elements of the Russian, French, and Italian schools are taught according to age and physical development, resulting in finished dancers with clean and virtuosic technique, brilliant artistry, stylistic versatility and the prowess to thrive in the diverse choreographic demands of today.

Performance opportunities are a priority for all Colorado Ballet Academy students. Advanced levels participate in a classical production in the fall and perform regularly in Colorado Ballet’s Black Box Theater during First Friday Art Walks and Saturday Soirees. Select students are chosen to perform with the Colorado Ballet for The Nutcracker and additional productions during the Company season, repertory permitting. Levels 1 through Pre-Professional Division participate in an all Academy full-length classical production at the Ellie Caulkins Opera House each May. CBA’s youngest students as well as the Jazz, Modern, and Tap students show off their skills at a year-end performance in Colorado Ballet’s Black Box Theater. Supplemental training and performance opportunities are available through community performances, Youth America Grand Prix, and Denver Ballet Guild.

Stage Experience

Colorado Ballet Academy offers the unique opportunity to gain stage experience at a young age with our acclaimed professional ballet Company and through student showcase performances and outreach programs. Students learn through coaching and observation the discipline imperative to preparing for performance, stage etiquette, confidence, and decorum which are inherent in performance environments.

The Nutcracker

Each year more than 80 students are selected to dance with Colorado Ballet in its celebrated production of The Nutcracker. Participation is only open to our students committed to our ballet program for the entire academic year, students are chosen by audition only, for ages 8 and up. Click here for The Nutcracker audition information.

Spring Performance

The Academy produces an annual student showcase, which is open to a paying public.

Additional Opportunities

The Academy also features its students during Saturday Soiree performances and First Friday Art Walk performances in our Black Box Theater at the Armstrong Center for Dance. Students may audition for other ballets that provide stage opportunities for students. Past opportunities have included Giselle, The Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Cinderella and ALICE (in wonderland). Our Pre-professional students may be selected to perform with the Company and the Studio Company in some of Colorado Ballet’s largest productions.


The Colorado Ballet Academy offers programs for participation in the Youth America Grand Prix Competition (YAGP) and the Denver Ballet Guild (DBG). These programs are designed to further each student’s education and develop well-rounded, versatile dancers.

2018-2019 Session

  • 2018-2019 Registration now open!
    Limited availability for mid-semester enrollment in specific levels and classes, see schedule
  • Open Program registration is open.

Student Evaluations 

Every student in Levels 1 through Pre-professional trainees receive written evaluations at the end of each year with a briefer evaluation provided mid way through the year. The evaluations will include information on the student’s technical proficiency and demeanor. Parent, teacher and student conferences can be scheduled through the school office. When students begin classes in the fall they will be reassessed to ensure their placement remains the same from the prior evaluation period (many students study during the summer session which can impact their placement).

Contact Us

(p) 303-339-1623 | (f) (303) 861-7174
Location: Armstrong Center for Dance, 1075 Santa Fe Drive, Denver, CO 80204
The main entrance to Colorado Ballet's new home is through the parking lot on the 11th Street side of the building.  
For general information, class registration and inquiries:

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Hours: Monday - Friday 9:30 a.m. - 8 p.m., Saturday 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Anatomy in Clay Centers

Photo: Colorado Ballet Academy students by Francisco Estevez Photography

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