“Women are so amazing- their resilience, natural peacefulness and their power. My art form nurtures those qualities in me. I think it’s important to find something that gives you a place to express those qualities. Nurture it, develop it and don’t give up on it. Have faith in the process of that thing that you love and brings you fulfillment as a person.” Yelena Holt, Holt Ballet Conservatory
Yelena Holt has been developing phenomenal dancers for over 22 years. Together with Nora Heiber, who has been dancing professionally for over 20 years and is a founding member of Alonzo King LINES Ballet, they discuss the transformational process of dance and how it’s never too late to pursue your dreams. Learn how this rural dance academy produces world-renowned dancers.
Yelena Holt has been an educator and dance instructor in Nevada County since 1980. With a background in dramatic and musical theater, classical ballet from Crockett School of Dance and Sacramento Ballet, and a State of California Credential and Masters in English Literature from the University of California, Berkeley, Mrs. Holt has nurtured Nevada County’s young dancers in achieving exemplary skills, not only in dance but in all walks of their lives. Mrs. Holt has initiated and developed three public high school dance programs: Dixon High School from 1975 to 1980: Bear River High School from 1989 to 1995; and Nevada Union High School from 1994 to 2010. She was also the owner of Nevada County Ballet School from 1982 to 1986. After her retirement from public school education in 2010, Mrs Holt saw a need to direct the training in the dance arts for both younger and older students. With 35 years of experience in developing dancers, Yelena Holt, through Holt Ballet Conservatory, aims to guide Nevada County aspiring dance artists in the training and opportunities they need in order to become beautiful dancers and empowered people. Holt Ballet Conservatory not only trains young people in the magical skills of dance technique, but also creates opportunities for the trained dancers to showcase their talents.
Yelena Holt has place more than 60 Nevada Country dancers in some of the nations more competitive and highly acclaimed dance conservators, universities and colleges, and pre-professional programs:
As a founding member of Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Nora Heiber danced for the company for 12 years after which she served as a Board Trustee for 10 years. As part of the teaching staff of the LINES BFA and Training Programs, Nora teaches a workshop entitled “Creating a Life of Dance”, in which she strives to bestow our students with such tools as proactive problem solving, confidence-building, and energy management for the purpose of enjoying a thriving professional career. In addition, Nora serves the arts community as the National Dance Executive for the American Guild of Musical Artists where she represents dancers, choristers, solo singers, and production staff of the opera and ballet. Nora is also one of the founding members of San Francisco GYROTONIC® where she has been teaching GYROTONIC® methodology since 1988. As a Master Trainer in all of the equipment, Nora has provided training to many GYROTONIC® trainers currently teaching all over the world.