The Turning Pointe Program is a dance training program that focuses on ballet technique, exposure to the arts, and leadership development. The program is one of the largest arts education programs of its kind in Memphis, TN serving over 200 students annually in area charter schools. The overarching goals are three-fold:
- To cultivate an appreciation for dance and fine arts;
- To increase pathways to college through dance scholarships;
- To prepare those students with talent and interest for collegiate and/or professional dance opportunities.
Students at local charter schools take two to four ballet classes a week during the school term. The majority receive this instruction as part of their school day. Students perform in annual dance concerts, and are required to attend professional dance and fine arts events in the city. Turning Pointe also incorporates a healthy lifestyles component, with emphasis on nutrition, cultural exposure and social etiquette. The program features nutrition workshops and a lecture series showcasing professional dance and fine arts practitioners currently working in the field. Talented students in the Turning Pointe Program are offered scholarships to train at the Collage Ballet Conservatory and are fully matriculated into the conservatory program.
Collage Dance Collective started the Turning Pointe program to provide students in under-resourced communities with access to classical ballet training and arts enrichment activities. Since the inception of the Turning Pointe program in 2011, Collage has trained more than 600 students.