The Manhattan Ballet School is a professional school dedicated to the traditions of classical ballet in New York City. For over 50 years the school has inspired children to achieve creativity through the art of ballet. At all levels a dance education gives them poise and self confidence. Faculty members are professional dancers with the highest teaching standards. Believing children learn best in a caring atmosphere, Elfriede Merman has created an environment where each child's ability is nurtured. A central feature of the school is the chance to perform twice a year in professional productions from as early as first grade. With The Manhattan Ballet Company, the School produces an annual Nutcracker Suite and a Spring Dance Concert featuring students and graduates. Appearing before live audiences gives children a sense of pride and accomplishment.