​Chicago Ballet Arts' mission is to provide a structured, affordable ballet program with high professional standards for Chicagoland's diverse communities. In the process, we strive to instill in our students a love of dance, a respect for the classical disciplines necessary in a performing art, and an expanded capacity for excellence.

Through our family concerts and open studio policy, we hope to encourage parental and community involvement in the efforts of our students, so that their success can be viewed as part of the permanent fabric of family and community life, and can stand as an open example of the relationship between rigor and achievement. 


Chicago Ballet Arts (CBA) is a nonprofit organization and was founded by Clare Carmichael in 1986 and was born from a desire to create a school that infused the rigor of a pre-professional dance program with a nurturing environment that would provide opportunities for all with the desire to learn. A non-profit organization, it has served Chicago's north and northwest neighborhoods for over 35 years. The school began at Montay College, where it quickly became recognized for its commitment to excellence for training and performances. In 1995, CBA moved to West Rogers Park where it continued to flourish. In 2005, Patti Eylar and Leslie Saunders took the helm as Co-Directors, serving for 15 years. Together, they guided the school through continued growth and secured CBA’s home in Evanston in 2020. ​


In August of that year, CBA welcomed Maliwan Diemer as its Artistic and Executive Director and that September, opened in its new location at 915 Foster Street. In addition to its long standing Preparatory and Pre-Professional Divisions, the school now includes Enrichment and Adult Divisions, which provide expanded offerings for a diverse range of dancers. CBA alumni have gone on to prestigious university dance programs and professional dance companies. The founding principles of diversity and inclusion remain core values and the school is proud to continue its dedication to quality and community.




Chicago Ballet Arts is a proud member the Evanston Performing Arts Collective
and of the Evanston Chamber of Commerce.

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