Who we are
Children's Center for Dance Education (CCDE) is a 501c(3) nonprofit charitable organization offering classes for children & adults. We are a regional ballet school, offering classes at our studio located in Evansville, Indiana. CCDE also has a touring company that brings the art of ballet to venues all over the tri-state area.
Founded in 1995, The Children’s Center for Dance Education has forged a new model for a ballet organization through innovative programming, artistic excellence, and extensive community outreach. Our dedicated and experienced instructors provide expert dance training to young dancers of all ages and levels. CCDE is a regional leader in creating broader access to this art form and has developed an inclusive approach with its teaching methods that allow students to excel.
Here at CCDE we strive to introduce children of the tri-state area to the experience of dance through outreach performances, professional dance exposure, and tuition assistance to the dance school. It is founded on the belief that all children regardless of race, creed, or economic status should have the opportunity to dance expressively which fosters self expression, healthy body confidence and self discipline.
Children’s Center for Dance Education was established in 1995 as a not-for-profit regional ballet school and performing arts company. Deena Laska Lewis is the Artistic Director and driving force behind CCDE. It was her dream to create a school that would provide opportunity for all children, regardless of race, special needs, or financial need to experience the beauty of dance. Children have the opportunity to participate in large scale productions in such venues as The Victory Theatre, The Centre, Murphy Theater and Henderson Fine Arts Center; as well as in area schools.
Often partnering with schools in the Tri-State, Children's Center for Dance Education creates worksheets, teacher packets, music and other supporting educational materials to support the blending of arts and education. Some of them include: The Nutcracker, Tubby the Tuba, Carnival of the Animals, Cinderella, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, and Hansel & Gretel.
Where are they now?
Many of our former students have gone on to study with major universities and to dance with well recognized ballet companies.
1999 Dance Theatre of Harlem, Columbia University of NYC, San Francisco Opera
2001 Fordum University, Alvin Ailey, Tree Shakers Co of NYC
2001 Alvin Ailey, UE then Indianapolis Colts dancer
2002 Butler University, Louisville Ballet
University of South Carolina ballet major, 2003 Knox County Young Artist of the Year
2003 Mayor’s Young Artist of the Year, Florida State University dance major
2004 Alvin Ailey, Julliard intensive, Dance Kaleidoscope
2007 Georgia Tech, Atlanta Ballet