Providing quality dance education in a nurturing environment, inspiring learning, artistry, excellence and life skills.
Technique. Education. Performance.
Southern New Hampshire Dance Theater (SNHDT) was founded in 1996 and has quickly become the most well-respected dance school in the New England area. Our school is known for its outstanding Pre-Professional dance program and performing company.
Caring. Nurturing. Professional.
SNHDT’s highly skilled faculty is committed to providing students with quality dance training in a caring and nurturing environment.
Our professionally trained and educated faculty are affiliated with some of industry’s most notable Colleges, Universities and professional companies.
Connecticut Ballet, Oklahoma City Ballet, School of American Ballet, Point Park University, Des Moines Ballet, Bern Ballet, Boston Ballet, Boston Conservatory, Frankfurt Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Zurich Ballet, New York University and Regional Dance America.
Large Observation Windows.
The dance floors at our studios are free-floating sprung dance floors designed to reduce fatigue and prevent injuries.
Our large observation windows allow family and friends to easily view classes from our comfortable waiting area.
Our spacious studios and waiting area are fully air-conditioned!
Create and support a well-structured, organized and safe learning community where dance as a performing art continues to grow, flourish and enriches lives.
Our Core Values
- Offering age appropriate curriculum with a clear progression of structured learning
- Developing an inspired, nurturing, and supportive learning community
- Honoring the integrity of dance as a performing art through well organized events and performances
- Providing quality dance education from professionally trained & educated staff.
Photo by David Sun
Artistic Director, Patricia Lavoie, established Southern New Hampshire Dance Theater (SNHDT), located in Bedford, NH, in September of 1996. Ms Lavoie, a native of Bedford, not only brings back to the community her established skills and reputation as a teacher, but also her knowledge and experience as a professional dancer.
SNHDT is now known for its outstanding Pre-professional Dance Program and has quickly become the most well respected dance school in the New England area. The school’s highly skilled & diverse faculty is committed to providing students with exceptional dance training in a caring and nurturing environment. In 1998, Artistic Director Patricia Lavoie, established the school’s affiliate performing company, Southern NH Youth Ballet (SNHYB).
In 2001, SNHDT became the resident Nutcracker performing company at the historic Palace Theatre in Manchester, NH. The school has presented this Holiday Classic alongside a live professional orchestra for nearly 20 years.
During a span of over 25 years, dancers from SNHDT have garnered the interest of several renowned choreographers who have staged original and classic works for the Youth Ballet. Among them are: Ashley Walton, former dancer with Atlanta Ballet & Dayton Ballet; Benjamin Briones, Artistic Director of Briones Ballet; Bafana Matea, former dancer of Battery Dance Theatre; Mary LeGere, Artistic Director of Raleigh Dance Theatre; Jeremy Collins, former principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre; Peter Pawlyshyn, Former Director of Kansas City Ballet School; and Kitty Seale, Artistic Director of Alabama Dance Theatre.
George Balanchine Trust
Southern NH Dance Theater has been recommended by repetiteurs of the George Balanchine Trust to be granted permission to perform Mr. Balanchine’s ballet “Valse-Fantaisie.” SNHDT was coached by former New York City Ballet dancers Darla Hoover and Deborah Wingert. Dancers from the Youth Ballet had the distinct honor of performing this renowned ballet in 2001, 2002 and 2007.
Regional Dance America
Southern New Hampshire Youth Ballet is a Regional Honor Company of Regional Dance America (RDA) Northeast, a national organization of pre-professional dance companies. Its purpose is to encourage and develop companies with high standards and to offer the directors, choreographers, teachers and dancers additional opportunities to perform and study with master teachers and choreographers and to make contacts within the professional dance world. Evaluated in the spring of 2005, the Youth Ballet is the first company from New Hampshire, and currently the only company from New England, to be accepted into this prestigious organization. In 2014, 2015 and 2017 the Youth Ballet received the prestigious National Choreographic Recognition Award for its outstanding performance of Ashley Walton’s original works Ascending (in 2014) and Impetus (in 2015) and Metamorphosis (in 2017) at the RDA Northeast and National Festivals.
Youth Ballet dancers have participated in many prestigious programs across the country, including Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Miami City Ballet, Houston Ballet, Harid Dance Conservatory, Ellison Ballet, Boston Ballet, Ballet Academy East, and more.
Our Graduates and Alumni
Graduates of the Youth Ballet have been contracted with professional companies including The Joffrey Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, Richmond Ballet, Ballet Austin, Sacramento Ballet, Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago, Phantom of the Opera Touring Company, Nevada Ballet Theatre and The Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular.
The Margaret Lavoie Memorial Scholarship
In March of 2006, we lost a wonderful and warm member of our dance community. Margaret Ann Lavoie, fondly known as “Peggy”, left an indelible mark and touched the lives of students, faculty, and parents with her endless generosity of heart and time. Peggy was not only Miss Trish’s mom … she was also the studio’s “mom”. Peggy was enormously proud of all the many accomplishments of SNHDT and the Youth Ballet.
In April of 2006, Southern New Hampshire Youth Ballet established The Margaret Lavoie Memorial Fund. Nominated and chosen by school faculty, the memorial fund provided a full tuition scholarship to a student who best exemplified the qualities that Peggy most admired: character, integrity, responsibility and leadership. This award was announced and presented each year at SNHDT’s Year End Performance. Since 2006, nearly twenty-eight thousand dollars have been awarded to students here at Southern NH Dance Theater through this fund.
2007: Aubrey Pearson
2008: Lauren Thomas
2009: Rebecca Wilson
2010: Tabitha Neumire
2011: Erika Davis and Elizabeth Williams
2012: Anne Niemaszyk
2014: Delaney Colegrove, Lea Iuliano and Rachel Ingram
The Riley Wolf Memorial Fund
Riley Katherine Wolf began dancing at SNHDT when she was eight years old and joined SNHYB when she was eleven. Riley performed in the Nutcracker at The Palace Theatre for six years, including her dream role of Clara in 2011. Riley’s passion for ballet was infectious. Ever determined to dance on despite life’s challenges, Riley’s perseverance, grit and determination were an inspiration to us all.
On December 1, 2013, Riley lost her battle with cancer. She was 15. Under the direction of Riley’s parents, David and Terry Wolf, a Memorial Fund was established in Riley’s honor to provide scholarships to dancers at SNHDT who share the same passion for ballet that Riley did so that her passion and spirit for dance may dance on.
2014: Kayley Lyttle
2015: Taylor Eriksen & Kaitlin Griffin
2016: Alexandra Campbell & Sierra Horne
2017: Kyra Argeropoulos & Teresina O’Hare
2018: Lauren Felthun & Kaitlin Griffin
Southern New Hampshire Youth Ballet (SNHYB) is a regional company of Regional Dance America (RDA) Northeast, a national organization of pre-professional dance companies. It’s purpose is to encourage and develop companies with high standards, and to offer the directors, choreographers, teachers and dancers additional opportunities to perform and study with master teachers and choreographers and to make contacts within the professional dance world.
Evaluated in the spring of 2005, the Youth Ballet is the first and currently only company from New England, to be accepted into this prestigious organization. Each spring at the Annual Festival, company dancers have the opportunity to:
- Attend Master classes with some of the country’s leading professionals
- Audition for numerous tuition and cash awards to some of the country’s top summer programs. In 2018, RDA Northeast awarded over $66,000 in cash and tuition scholarships
- Perform at the Annual Festival
- Be seen by college & university recruiters as well as artistic directors from all over the country
PALACE THEATER of MANCHESTER, NH
SNHDT is the resident performing company of the yearly family favorite holiday tradition, The Nutcracker!
The Palace Theatre is a non-profit performing arts center that hosts its own professional company, youth, and teen programs as well as presenting acts. The beautiful 834 seat theatre is the only one of its kind in this area!
Southern NH Dance Theater has teamed up with Eurotard Dancewear to provide our students and families with the perfect dress code solution. For over 35 years Eurotard Dancewear has been creating dance, praise, gymnastics and active wear made from the highest quality of fabrics for beautiful, strong, and durable dance wear, providing comfort & confidence for all.