The Peggy Willis Classical Ballet Scholarship Award Program

The performing arts continuously face the ongoing problem for correct instruction to train classical ballet students Performing Arts Cultural Exchange’s mission is to increase professional training for classical ballet. We want to make an immediate impact on those communities which would not be able to realize correct classical ballet training without our program. The program will encourage training that prevents injury to students by utilizing the Vaganova Teaching Method – this system of training is the most thoroughly researched, scientifically based, physiologically correct and effective Ballet Training Program devised, and one whose details must be preserved as a legacy to future generations of Ballet Artists.

It has been five years to the day since we lost my sister Peggy Willis-Aarnio who was an immense force for the education and training of classical ballet teachers Internationally. Peggy’s lifelong dream was for every ballet student to be able to have access to studying and learning classical ballet no matter their financial circumstance. It is with sincere pride that I inform you we are now realizing that dream by establishing:

Peggy's Legacy

Dedicated to the preservation of the teaching method founded by the Vaganova School of Classic Dance and lifelong dedication to Teaching Method and Teaching Materials for learning how to teach correctly and prevent injury.

Sheila Willis Kleiman formed the Performing Arts Cultural Exchange a 501(c)3 Foundation in 2018 to continue Peggy’s teaching legacy which provides scholarships in her name called The Peggy Willis Classical Ballet Scholarship Award Program.

Dedicated to the preservation of the teaching method founded by the Vaganova School of Classic Dance and in memory of Peggy Willis-Aarnio for her lifelong dedication to Teaching Method and Teaching Materials for learning how to teach correctly and prevent injury.
~Peggy’s Legacy

1999 The Willis Conservatory of Classical Ballet elected to expand its areas of interest to take a more direct role in the training of the future generations of Classical Ballet Teachers, as well as students at the Lubbock address and celebrated its twentieth year anniversary.

Peggy Willis-Aarnio received an invitation to complete her advanced level pedagogical studies in Teaching Method at the Vaganova Ballet Academy in Saint-Petersburg, Russia.

The Peggy Willis Ballet hosted and performed in the World Premiere of Valery Panov’s “Giselle,” starring the world-famous Prima Ballerina, Galina Panova, and featuring a special guest star, Natalia Krassovska (a former member of the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo), as Giselle’s mother.

Company performs at Lubbock Theatres & TTU University, Texas, performed on tour in Texas, New Mexico, Florida, Tennessee, Illinois, as well as on a very special Tour to England in 1987.

The Peggy Willis Ballet Company of the Conservatory of Classical Ballet was formed in February, 1983.

Peggy Willis-Aarnio choreographed more than 80 original ballets, including Dracula: The Ballet which aired on PBS in 1982.

Our Vision & Mission

The Peggy Willis Classical Ballet Scholarship Award Program, in her honor and memory.
We founded The Performing Arts Exchange to create training programs and provide teaching scholarships to teachers and student scholarships to students across the world.

Scholarships

Student Scholarships ​As an aspiring student, you can apply for a scholarship to receive classical ballet training that will enable you to become a classical dancer in the elite Vaganova Classical Dance method. You will work with your school to provide an audition video. We will identify candidate students to award scholarships to cover their classes.

Teacher scholarships As a teacher passionate about preserving classical ballet, you can apply for a scholarship to receive for Year One 12-Week Webinar Course on the fundamentals of teaching the elite Vaganova Classical Dance method. You will first fill out the scholarship application and provide a video of your teaching environment. We will identify candidate teachers to award scholarships to cover their Year One teaching course and materials.

Classical Ballet Teaching Materials – The Willis Ballet Instructional Videos & Educational Materials Awarded to Teachers and Educational Institutions Peggy Willis dedicated her life and the past 40 years to acquiring technical pedagogical training for the Teaching Method and creating these elite classical ballet teaching materials. Performing Arts Cultural Exchange Foundation has acquired these training materials to train and educate teachers and students to succeed in Vaganova Classical Dance.

Help Preserve Classical Ballet and donate today!

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