Gustafson Dance, 2285 Las Positas Road, Santa Barbara, California 93105
(805) 563-DANC (3262) ext. 1

Happy Thanksgiving

to dancers and families of Gustafson Dance

Welcome to the Gustafson Dance Newsletter

In an effort to better communicate with our dancers and their families, we welcome you to the first edition of our newsletter! Our intention is to direct you to information on upcoming performances and bring you news and information about the school, State Street Ballet and our dancers themselves.
stephanie-bakerPhoto Shoot Fundraiser with Stephanie Baker

Do you need holiday card pictures of your family?

Professional photographer Stephanie Baker will be taking pictures at the Santa Barbara Mission on November 21, 2015 from 9 AM to 12 PM and 10AM to 2 PM benefitting State STreet Ballet Young Dancers. $60 a session includes 4 – 4×6 prints.

Sign up at the studio for an appointment or call Stephanie with any questions at (805) 569-5756.



A Note from State Street Ballet’s Board President:

Lynn Stokes-Pena, SSB Board President

Did you know that Gustafson Dance is affiliated with Santa Barbara’s acclaimed professional ballet company, State Street Ballet? Allison Gustafson is the Director of Gustafson Dance, the official school of State Street Ballet (SSB), and Rodney Gustafson is the Artistic Director of SSB, having founded this premier ballet company in 1994.

Gustafson Dance shares the same studio setting with SSB. Because of this unique environment, not only are students taught the fundamentals of dance movement as well as authentic classical and folkloric dance appropriate for children, they also are afforded opportunities to observe, meet with, and be instructed by professional dancers. One of our intentions in sending this letter is to spark your enthusiasm for this distinction among dance schools in Santa Barbara.

We also want to let you know that our dance curriculum is comprehensive. Gustafson Dance continues to demonstrate this through the success of its dancers. The comprehensive aspect of Gustafson Dance becomes most apparent as training gives rise to young talent. The State Street Ballet Young Dancers are featured in the Rudolph production this fall and have a spectacular annual Celebration of Dance performance at the Lobero Theatre in March, showing both contemporary and classical ballets.

Gustafson Dance instructors are committed to encouraging its dancers to achieve their respective levels of excellence at all stages of individual development. Our dancers are asked, not only to commit to their own attendance and participation in classes and performances, but, to include as part of their curriculum, participation as an audience member by attending at least one presentation of State Street Ballet’s productions. We know that you and your dancer will enjoy sharing the long and rich tradition of ballet as a performing art.

In addition, State Street Ballet is in it’s third year of running a Professional Track Program, primarily for students aged 18-20 and interested in taking the next step towards a career as a professional artist. Students are admitted by audition and include both American and international students. They spend a full season with State Street Ballet participating in company class and training in their own program for 3 hours a day. They perform in Professional Track presentations and educational outreach performances, as well as some State Street Ballet productions. Some students will earn apprenticeships with State Street Ballet in the following year, while some will move on to professional careers in other companies.

This year SSB’s productions include an exciting variety of excellent ballets. Performing at the Granada Theatre will be: Carmina Burana, Nutcracker, Don Quixote and a repertoire show at the New Vic Theatre . In a recent review, the Los Angeles Times said, “Gustafson has built a company respected for its choreography, dancing and fiscally responsible management, proving…that ballet is alive and kicking in Southern California.”

We look forward to seeing you at the studio as well as State Street Ballet performances! Thank you for your interest and participation in the dance curriculum at Gustafson Dance.

Ankle Strengthening and Other Stretches for Dancers

  • 20 releves turned in, parallel and turned out with weight properly placed on the ball of the foot and proper body alignment.
  • 20 inward circles of both feet, 20 outward circles of both feet, can be done with a theraband or without.
  • Hamstring stretching:
  • 25 slow and controlled sit ups/rollups (coming up only ½ way- lifting head and shoulders off the mat and drawing the belly to the spine without tucking the pelvis or pooching the tummy out or pulling on the neck.)
  • Plank (or kneeling plank) hold for 10 seconds and repeat up to 10 times.
  • Side bridge on forearm, legs crossed at feet to secure. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat up to 10 times.
  • Standing Quad Stretch –stand on one leg (can hold onto a chair or the barre with one hand for balance), bend the other at the knee and keep both knees next to each other. Gently pull the foot toward the bottom without the pelvis changing shape and without the knee moving outward. Hold for up to one minute.
  • Lunging calf stretch. Hold for one minute per leg.
  • Frog stretch 1 minute.


Performance Schedule

RUDOLPH will be staged at the Lobero Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 5th at 2pm and 6pm. Want a poster you could print out to promote the event?

NUTCRACKER will be at the Granada Theatre: Saturday, Dec. 19th at 2pm and 7:30pm and Sunday, Dec. 20th at 2pm.

Find out more info about tickets and dancer expectations.

todoParent Volunteer Requirement

We really appreciate all of our parent support in order to make the shows run smoothly and the dancers to be well supervised and prepared backstage. Parents are obligated to do some sort of volunteer job for each child in the school, once for the fall season show and once for the spring recital. We have come up with many different ways for parents to be involved, including an opt-out fee. Please click on the links below to fill out our online form and let us know how you would like to contribute your time.

See’s Candy Sale
Orders will be taken through Monday, November 30th Candy should be ready to be picked up by Friday, December 11th.

The top sales person will be given a $50 gift certificate to Harlequin’s Theatrical Supply (generously donated by Sara and Pete of Harlequin’s. Thank you!). If you have any questions, please email Lael Foster, SSBYD parent at [email protected] or call (805) 403-0265.