The Western Oklahoma Ballet Academy was established in 1974 by Candace Jones Smalley to provide quality instruction in the fine art of ballet. Penny Askew, a student of Ms. Smalley's, became the Director of the Academy in 1988. The school, which serves as the official school of Western Oklahoma Ballet Theatre, has built its reputation on proper ballet training, and is the only ballet school in Western Oklahoma that offers its students the opportunity to perform with a high-caliber regional ballet company. A graded syllabus based on American Ballet Theatre's National Training Curriculum is taught, with emphasis on correct muscle usage, posture, and body placement. Students receive training in technique, improvisation, terminology, ballet history, and performance skills in a disciplined yet personal atmosphere. Classes are offered to students ages 3 to adult.