Mentoring Dancers Since 1972
Pioneer Valley Ballet engages, inspires and nurtures people of all ages and abilities through artistic excellence in classical ballet education and performance.
Our Core Values
Inclusive community – Dancers of all ages, abilities, genders, body types, and backgrounds are valuable members of the Pioneer Valley Ballet community.
Dancers as leaders – Dance training cultivates important and diverse life skills, including youth empowerment, personal discovery and growth, respect for self and others, wellness, and teamwork.
Commitment to professionalism — Our dance instructors share their professional expertise through a curriculum that gives each student a solid foundation and instills in them the high standards of classical ballet technique.
Performance as education — Dancers are given the opportunity to share their art form with their community by participating in full-length, professional productions and engaging in a collaborative creative process through interactions with choreographers, stage crew, designers, and other theater and dance professionals.
Community building — Pioneer Valley Ballet partners with area businesses, schools and organizations to bring the performing arts to Western Massachusetts and beyond.
PVB began in 1972 in Northampton, Massachusetts. First known as the Pioneer Valley Ballet Guild, the reputation of the school’s ballet training and performance spread quickly, and became known as the area’s finest ballet school.
Since that time, numerous Artistic Directors have guided the programs. And since 2006, Maryanne Kodzis and Thomas Vacanti have brought the pre-professional ballet training program and performances into a new era.
PVB is a non-profit, mission-based organization with programming that includes year-round training opportunities for both casual and dedicated young dancers, two annual productions (including The Nutcracker) with student, community, and professional dancers, and extensive dance outreach to the community.
Our offices, costume shop, and professional quality studios are located in the Eastworks Building at 116 Pleasant Street in Easthampton, Massachusetts, less than 5 miles from Northampton. Our performance home is Northampton’s Academy of Music Theatre, built in 1891 and beloved by Pioneer Valley residents and visitors.
Each winter, PVB begins its season with The Nutcracker. This treasured community event includes over 250 dancers from towns throughout western Massachusetts, with performing parts ranging from enchanting snowflakes to the tiniest reindeer. These dancers perform alongside pre-professional students and guest artists from the Boston area and the Carolina Ballet.
Our season continues with an original full-length ballet, choreographed by our Co-Artistic Directors, Thomas Vacanti and Maryanne Kodzis. Previous performances have included:
Our season comes to a close in June, with an end-of-the-year performance showcasing students of all levels.