The Pointe Shoe Project

Charlotte Youth Ballet has been dedicated to providing community outreach since its inception over 40 years ago. Our community outreach includes the unique and wonderful Lasting Impressions program. Lasting Impressions offers free, year-round ballet classes to under-resourced children in the Charlotte community. This program offers young aspiring dancers the opportunity to slip on ballet shoes and step into the world of the performing arts, learning the art of storytelling through dance. Here dancers learn the language and technique of classical ballet and are exposed, often for the first time, to classical music.

Receiving their first pair of ballet slippers is an unforgettable moment for most of the students. CYB does not stop there, though: through this program, we also provide leotards, tights and costumes; any necessary equipment; and of course the expertise of our fabulous ballet instructors. Lasting Impressions dancers attend CYB’s professional productions, and receive a backstage look and meet professional dancers through our “Behind the Curtain” events. Finally, they get their chance to step into the spotlight and dance holiday and spring showcases for their friends and families.

In order to make this outstanding program possible, CYB created the Pointe Shoe Project. Artists, both professional and amateur, decorate, paint, and create works of art with old, used pointe shoes. These works of art are then auctioned or sold during our performances with proceeds going to benefit CYB outreach programs. For our 43rd annual  performance, we will be selling our pointe shoe masterpieces during our live performances of The Nutcracker, December 1st through 3rd 2023.  All completed Pointe Shoes must be turned in by November 19th for sale at this event!

Contributing artists receive recognition in our The Nutcracker program, which is available to audiences at each performance. Professional artists receive dedicated space on our webpage and social media to direct patrons and interested parties to their other works of art.

Artists will be provided with as many pointe shoes as they request and creativity is encouraged! (Idea starters for decorated pointe shoes can also be found on Pinterest.)

If you are an artist who would like to contribute a shoe, please contact

Pointe Shoe Project