is one of five Regional Associations of RDA composed of pre-professional non-profit dance companies, troupes, ensembles, and guilds in the Southeastern United States. RDA/Southeast was the first Regional Association for dance established in the US in 1956. Today, we continue to promote excellence in instruction, choreography, performance, and production while fostering a broad reaching network of dancers, choreographers, directors, vendors, recruiters, and scholarship donors.

RDA/Southeast includes the areas of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia, and the territory of Puerto Rico.

Meet our Member Companies

Alabama Dance Theatre
Kate Seale Smith, Kitty Seale
Montgomery, AL

Appalachian Ballet Company
Amy Moore Morton, Cheryl Van Metre
Maryville, TN

Atlanta Dance Theatre
Shelley Grames, Jonnie Kelley
Alpharetta, GA

Carolina Civic Ballet
Lindsay Collins Shaw, Jennifer Culler
​Raleigh, NC

High Point Ballet
Rita H. Taylor, Gary Taylor
High Point, NC

Inwood Dance Company
Denna Smith
Inwood, WV

Louisville Ballet Youth Ensemble
Elena Diehl, Bruce Simpson
Louisville, KY

Mississippi Metropolitan Ballet
Jennifer Beasley
Madison, MS

The Perla Ballet
Lori Ludwig, Meghan Chapman
St. Augustine, FL

Raleigh Dance Theatre
Mary LeGere
Raleigh, NC

Roswell Dance Theatre
Nancy Tolbert Yilmaz, Mary Lynn Taylor
Roswell, GA

Southeast Alabama Dance Company
Tracy Solomon, Ashlie Solomon
Dothan, AL

Southern Ballet Theatre
Brandon Chitwood
Lawrenceville, GA

Terminus School of Modern Ballet
Christine Welker
Atlanta, GA

Triangle Youth Ballet
​Lauren Lorentz de Haas, Christine Grider
Chapel Hill, NC


RDA/SE Festival 2022

May 5 – 7 in Daytona Beach, FL

At the Ocean Center, Peabody Auditorium & Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront Resort

Need some more info on what it means to be a member?

All Photos: Abigail Photos

History of Regional Dance America / Southeast

In the summer of 1955, Dorothy Alexander, founder and Artistic Director of the Atlanta Civic Ballet (now the Atlanta Ballet), was lunching with Anatole Chujoy, the eminent Dance Critic, Editor, and Publisher of Dance News. Chujoy had recently attended a festival of regional dance in Canada and suggested to Alexander that something similar could and should take place in the United States. She returned to Atlanta and started contacting her southeastern colleagues.


On April 14-15, 1956, the first Regional Festival in the United States took place at the Tower Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia. Participating companies included Southern Ballet, Birmingham Civic Ballet, Tampa Civic Ballet, Ballet Guild of Greater Miami, Charlotte Ballet, Ogilvie Concert Ballet of Jacksonville, and of course, the Atlanta Civic Ballet. Excitement was so high that the Southeastern Regional Ballet Association was formed — the first Regional Dance association of its kind. P.W. Manchester of Dance News served as the first adjudicator.


The success of the first Regional Festival and Ms. Dorothy’s vision inspired others throughout the country and eventually led to the establishment of four other regional associations. The 1988 establishment of Regional Dance America provided a national grid within which the Southeast and the other regional associations could continue to evolve and advance pre-professional dance. Every year RDA/Southeast gathers at Festival to celebrate its history, while looking through the lens of Dorothy Dorothy’s vision to the future of dance in America.

Regional Board of Directors

President: Robert Gosnell
Vice President: Jennifer Beasley
Secretary: Lauren Lorentz de Haas
Treasurer: Jackie Berry
Parliamentarian: Mary LeGere
RDA Coordinator: Tracy Solomon
RDA Representative: Nancy Tolbert Yilmaz
Membership Chair: Shelley Grames
Adjudication Chair: Jennifer Beasley
Scholarship Chair: Denna Smith
College Recruiter Chair: Robert Gosnell
Past President: Nancy Tolbert Yilmaz
Social Media Director: Kylie Berry

Professional Companies that began as members of RDA/Southeast:

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RDA membership offers so many opportunities for pre-professional dance companies to learn, work, and grow. We continually strive to evolve the national organization including connecting with new companies who share fresh ideas.

We welcome all inquiries about our organization and encourage you to JOIN US!