Santa Monica, California
Project RELEVÉ’s mission is to inspire people, young and old, to rise above all expectations & motivate them to Raise the Barre for Santa Monica and the greater community through the power and magic of ballet.
Thanks to all who joined us on June 8th, 2019, to pay tribute to Yvonne Mounsey with an unprecedented Centennial Gala!
Read the LA Dance Chronicle piece, Centennial Gala Honors Westside Ballet Icon-Yvonne Mounsey
This year, our fourth annual fundraiser was an unprecedented Gala event on June 8th, 2019 when we celebrated our co-founder Yvonne Mounsey’s 100th birthday and the generous contributions of the Sassounian Family and The Huntley Beach Hotel.
The Centennial Gala, as part of the company’s annual fundraising event, presented ballet luminaries and special guest stars:
Lauren Fadeley, Principal Artist with Miami City Ballet; Westside alumnus Andrew Veyette, Principal Dancer with New York City Ballet; international guest star & alumna Joy Womack; Joffrey Ballet’s Principal Dancer, Dylan Gutierrez, who danced with Westside Ballet alumna Lucia Connolly, also with Joffrey Ballet; and guest artist Zachary Guthier, Principal Dancer with California Ballet and Barak Ballet.
Additional alumni dancers were Lyrica Woodruff, of Broadway ‘Anastasia’ fame, and Nicole Haskins, currently with Smuin Ballet, dancing with resident guest artist Evan Swenson, formerly with Atlanta Ballet.
Guest artists danced the exquisite Balcony Pas de Deux from Krzysztof Pastor’s Romeo and Juliet, more illustrious works from Balanchine, and the fiery audience-favorite Don Quixote Pas de Deux.
The Celebration Continued on Sunday, June 9th
The celebration continued the next day with our Spring Performance on June 9th, when eighty dancers graced the stage during the two showings of the full company’s Spring Performance in a remarkable display of artistry, from George Balanchine’s breathtaking Serenade, to Yvonne Mounsey’s signature ballet Classical Symphony with dynamic music by Prokofiev — as well as the charming ballets Dances from Faust and Ecossaises.
The youngest dancers then took over the stage with Caprice Walker’s spectacular Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, with spirited music by Benjamin Britten, before resident Jazz Director Michele Bachar offered decadence with her classic Cabaret.
Thank you for supporting Project RELEVÉ’s mission at our third annual Soirée:
The Third Annual Fundraising Soiree was held September 27th, 2018 at the Santa Monica Bay Woman’s Club. This event featured an exquisite dinner and drinks, beautiful performances by Westside Ballet’s distinguished dancers, and an impressive silent auction.
Our Second Annual Fundraising Soirée was a great success –
a Big Thank You to Everyone who participated!
Westside Ballet’s Second Annual Fundraising Soirée on Thursday, September 14, 2017 at The Santa Monica Bay Woman’s Club, featured exquisite dinner and drinks, beautiful performances by Westside Ballet’s distinguished dancers, and an impressive silent auction. Sponsored by The Huntley Hotel, Il Forno Caffé, and Urth Caffé.
Project RELEVÉ gives you an opportunity to support the programs of Westside Ballet of Santa Monica, a pre-professional training company serving the Los Angeles ballet community for over 40 years. View the Project RELEVÉ brochure (pdf) for more information.
With support from the dance community and beyond, Westside Ballet is able to produce professional performances, expand its scholarship program, and build partnerships with numerous community organizations to advance the study and appreciation of ballet in Los Angeles.
Inspiring Generations Through Dance for 45 Years
Our highly dedicated, classically trained dancers enthrall thousands at our annual productions of The Nutcracker and Spring Showcase.
We are expanding our financial aid program, which allows less fortunate children to reap the benefits of the serious study of ballet.
We cultivate connections and inspire a love of dance by ensuring affordable ticket prices, providing underserved youth with complimentary tickets, and performing educational outreach programs for over 1,500 children a year.
2016 Raise the Barre Soirée Supported Project RELEVÉ
The 2016 Soirée, an elegant affair held at the Santa Monica Bay Woman’s Club, was an enormously successful event to benefit Westside Ballet’s Project RELEVÉ which provides support for performances, a scholarship fund, and community outreach programs.
Patrons from all over the City of Santa Monica came to celebrate and support Westside Ballet of Santa Monica as the jewel in the crown of the arts community both in Santa Monica and greater Los Angeles.
Caprice Walker Honored With 2016 Bravo! Award
‘Miss Caprice,’ as she is affectionately known to generations of Westside Ballet students, was honored for her longevity and commitment, dedication and vast contributions to the School and the Company over four decades.
Learn More About PROJECT RELEVÉ
Please download a copy of Project RELEVÉ | Raising the Barre to review our activities, and consider making a donation to the Westside Ballet of Santa Monica.
The Company is a non-profit which can accept corporate matching gifts and gifts of common stock as well as cash. For more information contact Westside Ballet’s Executive Director, Allegra Clegg at (310) 828-2018.
Thank you for your support
(Paypal receipt will show payment made to YLC Ballet, aka Westside Ballet of Santa Monica.)
…or print the Pledge Form (pdf) and mail to:
Westside Ballet of Santa Monica
c/o Westside Ballet Guild
1709 Stewart Street
Santa Monica, CA 90404
We gratefully acknowledge the sponsorship of The Huntley, Santa Monica’s legendary hotel, together with the support of:
- The City of Santa Monica
- Il Forno Trattoria
- Urth Caffé
- The Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce
- Santa Monica College
- Rotary Club of Santa Monica
- The Los Angeles County Arts Commission
- Ovation Entertainment
- Santa Monica Audi
Corporate sponsors receive multiple benefits. Please contact Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein at ProjectReleve@gmail.com for more information.
Board of Directors
Allegra Clegg, CEO & President
Judith Meister, 1st Vice-President & Treasurer
Caprice Walker, 2nd Vice-President
Marisa Rooke, Secretary
Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein, President, Director of Fundraising
Lynn Polite, Secretary
Lynne Campion, Treasurer
Jewels Solheim-Roe, Vice President, Community Outreach
Heather Vargas, Vice President, Finance
Trish Blessing and Julie Weinbach, Vice Presidents, Education
Susan Winfield, Vice President, Hospitality and Membership
Faye Smith, Vice President, Productions
Elizabeth Abarbanel, Liz Himelstein Reynolds, Officers-at-Large
Richard Tahvildaran-Jesswein, Backstage Dads Liaison
Trish Blessing, Parent Communications Liaison
Nancy Drake, Artistic Liaison