Youth Ensemble

Deeply Rooted Youth Ensemble is a training program led by Deeply Rooted’s Artistic Team, company members, and select guest artists. Training in ballet, modern, African-based techniques, and repertory workshops, develops the dancer’s technical skill and performance readiness.

To ensure artistic and technical growth we require each dancer to commit to participating in the full season of the Youth Ensemble. The Youth Ensemble season consists of three terms (with an additional optional term for summer): Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer Dance Intensive.  During each term, training in Ballet and Modern will be provided as well as repertory workshops led by a Deeply Rooted Artistic Staff. These new works (3) will be showcased during the final performance(s) as well as requested performance opportunities throughout the Chicagoland area. Dancers must commit to the entire season to provide a consistent learning atmosphere. Below you will find the corresponding dates for each season as well as vacation days and tentative performance dates.


Deeply Rooted Dance Theater
17 N State, 19th Floor


Sundays, 3:00-6:30pm

Technique Class (Drop-in): 3:00-4:30pm (times subject to change)

Repertory Rehearsal: 4:30-6:30pm


Attendance is mandatory!

If you are unable to attend the scheduled class or rehearsal due to sickness or emergency, please inform the Dance Education Manager, Samantha Brown.

All other conflicts or absences must be submitted in writing one week in advance using the Youth Ensemble Conflict Forms provided by the office.

Excessive absenteeism and tardiness [over three (3)] may lead to dismissal from the program.

In case of illness or injury, participants are encouraged to observe class and rehearsals and take notes.

Fall Term

October 6 – December 1, 2019

Winter Term

January 5 – February 23, 2020

Spring Term

March 3 – May 3, 2020

Final Performances

Night Out in the Parks, West Pullman Park: Saturday, October 17, 2019, 6pm 

IABD Conference: Philadelphia, PA, January 14-19 2020

Final Performance: Fri. May 1 & Sat. May 2, 2020, 7pm, location TBD

Tickets: We ask that each dancer be responsible for selling 5 tickets to the final performance.


Thanksgiving – November 25 – December 2

Christmas – December 16 – January 4

Spring – April 14t April 21

Tuition/Costume Fee

To offset the cost of instructors, studio rental etc; for the entire 24 weeks (84 hours) of training there is a $900 tuition fee (approximately $11 per class) for the Fall, Winter and Spring terms with the option to participate in the summer intensive pre-professional program (4 weeks) for the rate of $975 (regularly $1575). The fee may be broken into the following increments with the following tuition payment schedule deadlines. There will also be a costume fee of $200 due April 7, 2020.

Select an option below to register

Drop-In Rate | $25 
Winter Full Session | $300 – Due December 30, 2019
Spring Full Session | $300 – Due March 10, 2020
Full Season | $900
Summer Dance Intensive (optional) | $975 – March 29, 2020
Costume Fee | $200 – Due April 7, 2020

Artistic Staff

Nicole Clarke-SpringerArtistic/Dance Education Director

Dereque Whithurs Associate Youth Ensemble Director

Artistic Team

Nicole Clarke-SpringerArtistic Director

Gary AbbotAssociate Artistic Director

Joshua L. IshmonRehearsal Director

Kevin Iega JeffCreative Director, Deeply Rooted Productions


Joshua L. IshmonAssociate Artistic Team Member

Dominique Atwood Deeply Rooted Company Member, Ballet

Marylana Locklear Deeply Rooted Company Member, Horton

Youth Ensemble Administrative Staff

Samantha Brown Dance Education Manager

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