Founders: Anna Baker-VanCura & Barry VanCura

(423) 821-2055 ~ 3202 Kelly's Ferry Rd. Chattanooga, TN, 37419 


City of Chattanooga's Department of Youth & Family Development, Chattanooga Boys Choir, Chattanooga Christian School, Center for Creative Arts, Creative Discovery Museum, Mountain Arts Community Center, and Siskin Children's Institute. 



Based in Chattanooga since 1987, Ballet Tennessee embodies the spirit of community through dance by fulfilling its mission with professional track, outreach and educational programs, plus well-crafted performances. With the belief that "Everyone benefits from ballet," all projects have strong elements of outreach under-served audiences, youth programming, and arts in education. VanCura Ballet Conservatory fosters a love of dance and its discipline in a positive learning environment. As the official school of Ballet Tennessee, its mission is to develop strong classical ballet technique, to offer quality training in related dance idioms, and to develop artistry in all students. 


Barry VanCura (1948-2013) & Anna Baker VanCura 

The VanCuras founded a school and company, Ballet Midwest, in Chicago. They were the directors of National Academy of Dance, a community and high school boarding program in Champaign, IL. They have been on the faculty of: University of Illinois, Youngstown State University of Ohio, Columbia College of Illinois, Rockford College of Illinois and more. They worked as artists in the WolfTrap Institute and in the Headstart Program in Chattanoooga. The VanCuras attended the 1998 and 2000 International Ballet Conference in Vail, Colorado, 1999 Teacher Seminar in Chautauqua, New York, and 2003 and 2007 National Conference of Dance/USA. They served as judges and guest instructors for Dance Masters Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. Anna has been a resident guest instructor for Center of Creative Arts High School in Chattanooga. The VanCuras received the Margaret Martin Award from the Tennessee Association of Dance in recognition of Outstanding Service to Dance in Tennessee. 

Ballet Tennessee's mini-documentary, "Power of Dance," won a 2007 Telly Award. Ballet Tennessee won the WTCI "Be More Enriched Award" in 2010 and "Be More Innovative Award" in 2012. Ballet Tennessee's 2010 Nutcracker featuring New York City Ballet's principal dancers, Jenifer Ringer and Jared Angle and Fredrick Davis of Dance Theater of Harlem, was filmed by WTCI and shown locally and nationally throughout the Christmas season. 


The mission of Ballet Tennessee is to make a positive impact on people of all ages, races, abilities and economic levels through the art of ballet by providing quality performance and instruction. 


Ballet Tennessee Summer Intensive, Dance Alive, Talent Identification Program, Lecture Demonstrations , Master Classes, Outreach Education, Conservatory Training 


The minute you feel comfortable and approach class with a "I know how to do this" attitude, that is when the artist within is asleep. Repetition is necessary to build a solid foundation of dance. How do you develop your artistry? Arrive each day filled with curiosity about what is to come, bring 100% of yourself to dance, be open to learning (this also means accepting corrections and guidance with grace) and BELIEVE in yourself. 

-Anna Baker Van-Cura, Executive Director 

"You really have a jewel here in Chattanooga"

-Denise Jefferson