As the Academy Associate Director, a summer intensive instructor, and former company dancer, Anita Pacylowski-Justo is a familiar face to Charlotte Ballet. Check out why she thinks Summer Intensives are a vital part of a student’s training and hear her tips on how to succeed!


What is the environment like at Charlotte Ballet’s summer intensive?

The atmosphere at Charlotte Ballet’s summer intensives is friendly and professional– from the interns at the front desk to the ladies in wardrobe, the wonderful piano accompanists to the talented students. Here, I am able to reconnect with colleagues that I danced with nearly two decades ago and share goals and aspirations. Being in the professional dance industry for over 28 years, you know when an organization is continuing to grow.

What are the benefits of partaking in a summer intensive?

Summer Intensives allow the student to immerse him/herself in a complete manner. No school, homework or extra activities allow the student to spend more hours learning, analyzing and creating dance. Taking class with new teachers and meeting new dancers from other schools builds students scope and knowledge.


Photo from CBA parent Nora

How can students succeed this summer?

Think of the intensive in three parts: Mind, Body & Spirit. I will focus on the mind. Keep a journal. Throughout the intensive, you will hear many corrections, “keys” to unlock your technique and artistry, WRITE THEM DOWN. The process of writing frames your thoughts so that they can stay with you past short-term memory.

After the intensive, you will have a “rest and absorb” week or so when your body and mind are relaxing and the information is ACTUALLY sinking in. After a few weeks when you return to dance, you will be refreshed and the journal can help you reframe your mind. I always say that the student will feel the work from the intensive when they return back in the fall at their home studio.

Most importantly, keeping a positive mind is training too. Each day give yourself a pat on the back, remember that you are one of a kind. Work hard and do not compare yourself. Strive for inspirations. They are right there in front of you. No electronic devices needed. You will feel lighter and happier.

Overall thoughts?

I am looking forward to staying connected to Charlotte Ballet’s growth and extremely grateful that Charlotte Ballet allows me to do what I love and share my knowledge with the next generation.

Want to learn more about Summer Intensive ?


See all the summer intensive fun by searching #CLTBALLETSI

Photo by Jeff Cravotta