The Company

Summer Intensive

Ruth S. Shur Summer Intensive




Ruth S. Shur Carolina Ballet Summer Intensive
Announces New Artistic Director and Managing Director

RALEIGH, NC --- Carolina Ballet is pleased to announce the naming of two new Directors of the Ruth S. Shur Summer Intensive Training Program and a special guest teacher. Principal dancer, Margaret “Peggy” Severin-Hansen will become the program’s new Artistic Director and Shelley Jacobsson has been named as the Managing Director. In addition Melissa Podcasy, former Principal Dancer with Pennsylvania Ballet and Basel Ballet of Switzerland, and the founding ballerina of Carolina Ballet, will serve as special guest teacher for the 2016 session.  “I am so pleased that we have such talented and passionate individuals with deep ties to this company and its mission to lead the next chapter of our world-class training program” said Robert Weiss, Artistic Director and CEO of Carolina Ballet.
Ms. Severin-Hansen  is not only one of the Carolina Ballet’s most celebrated Principal Dancers, but is also one of its founding members, having first danced with the company in its inaugural season in 1998. Her training at such prestigious institutions as School of American Ballet in New York City and the Royal Danish Ballet prepared her to quickly rise through the ranks of the Company, achieving the rank of Principal Dancer in 2002. She has had scores of roles created on her, being singled out for her artistry and technical merit by a variety of world renowned choreographers in her eighteen years dancing with Carolina Ballet as well as the Royal Ballet of Flanders. “The Carolina Ballet has been home to me. The students are the future and I love working with them. I really look forward to working with the current faculty,” said Ms. Severin-Hansen, and was also grateful “for this opportunity to grow into yet another position for this company.” In her new role as Artistic Director, she will select faculty and guide the direction of the training program, as well as oversee student auditions and selection, and act as one of the program’s principal teachers.

Shelley Jacobsson has served as the Ruth S. Shur Summer Intensive Program Coordinator in Raleigh, NC since 2010, supporting its growth into the nationally recognized program it is today. She has also been the manager of youth performers associated with all Carolina Ballet productions since 2008, including Nutcracker with over 130 student cast members annually. Before moving to the Raleigh area, Ms. Jacobsson served as a Business Manager for the Times Mirror, a division of the Los Angeles Times, in southern California.  “I feel a genuine sense of pride as we continue to develop the program with the goal of our summer intensive continuing to be a top ranked program nationally,” said Ms. Jacobsson. “I appreciate the opportunity to work with the creative leadership and talent and to apply my experience and enthusiasm to the many other components of the program and to provide dancers with a developmentally rich and complete summer intensive experience.”

Tyler Walters, who has been the Summer Intensive Director since the founding, and Julie Janus Walters, who has served as the Summer Intensive Assistant Director for that entire time, both leave the program to pursue educational opportunities closely related to their work as faculty at Duke University in Durham, NC. Robert Weiss said, “I wish Tyler and Julie all the best upon their departure. They worked hard to help me build a program that is unique in its outlook and in the top tier of summer education for promising young dancers. I am proud and grateful for what they have accomplished, and excited to work with Peggy and Shelley to continue to grow the excellence of the program.”

Carolina Ballet, Inc. has rapidly taken its place among America’s premier arts organizations.  Under the innovative direction of artistic director Robert Weiss, with a talented company, and fiscally responsible management and community support, Carolina Ballet exposes audiences to traditional ballet by legendary masters and new works of contemporary choreographers.  This eighteenth season represents the vibrant entrepreneurial spirit and ever-increasing quality of life experienced here in North Carolina.



Program | June 26 – July 30, 2016

Our summer intensive offers serious dance students extraordinary opportunities to train, rehearse, and perform alongside the professional dancers of Carolina Ballet.  Leading dancers from the company will be teaching and rehearsing during the five weeks of the program and dancing in the final performances.

Train with renowned faculty of experienced professionals including guest master teacher Michael Vernon from Indiana University; Artistic Director of Carolina Ballet, Robert Weiss; and the artistic staff and Principal Dancers of Carolina Ballet. Immerse yourself in a rewarding dance experience with a high level of training for young dancers, pre-professionals, and for a select group of the most advanced students, enjoy the challenge of our summer trainee program.

Perform repertory and new choreography in the final performances at the Fletcher Opera Theater. 


Please visit our Summer Intensive Audition Page for information on the National Audition Tour and video audition applications.
Our national audition tour is sponsored by

The Curriculum

Classes and rehearsals are held Monday through Saturday and include up to six hours of instruction and rehearsals each day. The program is designed to cultivate strong, well-trained artists. Classes in ballet technique, studies en pointe, variations, men’s class, men’s variations, modern/contemporary technique, jazz, Pilates, yoga, partnering*, and conditioning provide a strong foundation in classical training.

Repertory rehearsals are an integral part of the curriculum. Dancers will have the opportunity to develop their artistry and performance capabilities through the rehearsal and performing process. Students will work with company ballet masters and award-winning choreographers to strengthen these skills.

Additional curriculum highlights include the opportunity to see Carolina Ballet in action during open rehearsals as new ballets are created on the company. Also, a special lecture series with such topics as dance history, music appreciation, and dancer health and injury prevention will provide an enhanced educational experience.

*Company men will be employed in partnering classes as needed.


Classes and rehearsals will be held at Carolina Ballet’s professional studios and at Saint Mary’s School.
All dance spaces have sprung floors with professional quality dance surfaces.

Campus Life

Saint Mary’s School offers a beautiful 23-acre campus filled with historic charm. The front campus is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a highlight on the North Carolina Civil War Trails. The Saint Mary’s Chapel, designed by Richard Upjohn, is a National Historic Site, and five of the school’s buildings are Raleigh Historic Properties.

Positioned near the heart of downtown Raleigh, Saint Mary’s location is ideal for students. Called a "city within a park," Raleigh is packed with exciting things to see and experience. The school’s secure campus lies just blocks from the state capitol, the one-of-a-kind shops of Cameron Village, and is within walking distance of museums, art galleries, restaurants, and churches.

Additional campus amenities include pool, library, in-room Wi-Fi, game room, and movie-viewing areas.

Visit Saint Mary's School Website

Trainee Program

Students accepted as summer trainees will have a specialized program that includes:
The opportunity to be selected to rehearse and/or perform with Carolina Ballet. Up to two Summer trainees may be selected to be apprentices or trainees with Carolina Ballet for the 2016-2017 season.

Admission and Tuition

Students from the ages of 12 to 21 may audition during our National Audition Tour (11-21 in Raleigh).
All students who attend a live audition will receive notification of their acceptance by email 2-3 weeks after their audition. Please wait three weeks before inquiring about audition results. Each student will be evaluated and placed in the session that best matches their maturity and technical level.

Tuition and Room and Board Schedule:

Session                                  Dates                                                          Tuition

A                                              June 26–July 30, 2016   (5 weeks)       $2,250 ($450/week)

B                                              July 11–July 30, 2016 (3 weeks)           $1,470 ($490/week)

C                                              June 26July 9, 2016 (2 weeks)            $1,000 ($500/week)

Room and board fees at Saint Mary’s : $550/week

Resident students must be between the ages of 12 and 21 to stay on Saint Mary's campus.

Acommodations also available for dancers 18 and over at Doubletree by Hilton, Raleigh

Visit Doubletree website here

Please visit our webpage for more information about our Young Dancer Summer Program for students ages 9-11.


- Guest Master Teacher Michael Vernon

- Master classes taught by Robert Weiss, Artistic Director of Carolina Ballet

- Fourth of July celebration

- Final Performance at Fletcher Opera Theater

- Weekend activities and excursions

-Trainee program

*Please note that highlights are dependent upon the student’s session, class placement, and boarding status.

Freed of London, a proud sponsor of the 2016 Carolina Ballet Audition Tour, is happy to offer a 20% discount to all Carolina Ballet summer school attendees on telephone orders placed May 1 through September 1, 2016 (stock items only). To order, call Brenda Neville at (866) MY-FREED x232 and mention that you are a student of Carolina Ballet's 2016 Summer Program. For more information, click here.

For further information call Shelley Jacobsson at 919.624.8248 or email her at