Welcome to the Charleston City Ballet, Charleston, SC’s home for professional Classical Ballet. “The symphony is our voice, the fine arts museums our eyes, the dramatic theaters our minds, and dance our body.  The arts enrich our city and help make Charleston a place where people want to live and grow.”

Contact the Robert Ivey Ballet Academy studio at (843)556-1343



"To see Michael and Olga in action is fantastic and an inspiration . What they bring out of young aspiring dancers is sheer magic and brilliance. Their extraordinary coaching abilities has helped many dancers move forward toward their dance goals and feel their expertise is integral to any organization they are a part of."

Desmond Richardson - CoFounder/ CoArtistic Director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet.

About Us

Mission Statement

The Charleston City Ballet is a classically innovative ballet company that creates, nurtures, and shares the joy of dance through excellence in quality performance and faithful stewardship of the art form.

Charleston City Ballet

Look at every great city throughout history and one thing ties them together: the arts. The arts provide an outlet for the soul, inspire people to greatness and create a city’s cultural heart.  Under Mayor Joe Riley, Charleston has become one of America’s great cities with the marriage of classic southern traditions and the classical arts.  The symphony is our voice, the fine arts museums our eyes, the dramatic theaters our minds, and dance our body. The arts in Charleston help to create a city where people want to live and grow.

Charleston City Ballet’s Artistic Director is Charleston native, Michael Wise. Michael’s ballet career has taken him all over the world with international acclaim. The locally created professional ballet company, Charleston City Ballet, will bring the expertise of the world’s greatest ballet companies to Charleston. We will usher fresh collaboration among all the arts with our belief in an open arts platform. Charleston has always been known for great classic traditions, and deserves to have a ballet company that lives and breaths the classics, but also looks to the future. Charleston City Ballet brings a renewed belief in the arts, spurs economic growth, improves arts education, and enriches where we live.


In 1978 Robert Ivey created the Robert Ivey Ballet and for almost 40 years exemplified proud traditions of grace, generosity and excellence while serving the Charleston community. Enthusiastically led by its Directors, Board, and supporters, the Robert Ivey Ballet has renewed old ties and established new partnerships with local businesses, school districts, community leaders, art’s organizations, and most importantly with local ballet audiences.

Robert Ivey used his artistic vision, his boundless energy, and his desire for excellence to create a ballet company that toured over 20 countries, was Olympic Ambassador to China, performed at World’s Fairs, won national awards for original choreography, and was an integral part of the Piccolo Spoleto Festival for over 30 years. Hundreds of thousands of adults and children have seen Robert Ivey Ballet performances.

In 2011 Mr. Ivey and the Robert Ivey Ballet Board of Directors chose Charleston native Michael Wise and his Russian-born wife Olga to take the reins of the Robert Ivey Ballet knowing they would bring their energy and enthusiasm, rigorous Russian classical ballet training and extensive professional expertise to propel his beloved company into the future. They have delivered on that promise.

In 2014 under the artistic direction of Michael Wise, the Robert Ivey Ballet became the Charleston City Ballet with the primary goal of producing professional full-length classical ballets and representing the city Of Charleston SC and the State of SC.  CCB strategic partners include the Citadel Collage of Business and Charleston’s Office of Cultural Affairs.


Michael Wise - Artistic Director

Mr. Wise was born in Charleston and studied at the North Carolina School of the Arts. In 1988 Mr. Wise was asked to train in Budapest as the Hungarian representative in international ballet competitions. He then joined the Moscow Classical Ballet, and was then promoted to Principal Dancer - the only American to have held this position in a major Soviet ballet company. In 1990, the Russian government awarded him the Tchaikovsky Diploma for continuous high levels of Technique and Artistry. After Russia, Mr. Wise continued to perform internationally as a Principal Dancer. Mr. Wise has taught ballet for over 20 years, prepared many students for international ballet competitions and professional careers.

Olga Wise - Assistant Director

Olga Tchoub Wise is a native of Moscow, Russia. Mrs. Wise graduated from the Bolshoi Choreographic Institute with a Masters Degree in the Fine Arts. In 1990 she accepted an offer to join the Moscow Classical Ballet as a soloist. She went on to work as a Principal Dancer with internationally known dancers and companies. She is a highly sought-after Master Teacher and Choreographer, and has frequently judged classical ballet competitions.



Individual donations and corporate giving programs are vital to keeping a professional ballet company active in Charleston. Please support CCB with one-time or recurring donations in the amount of your choice. Special areas of need include: Dancer Salaries, Pointe Shoes, Housing, Costumes, Sets, and Community Complimentary Ticket Programs.






To make an online donation (Please read instructions before proceeding):

  1. Click the Donate Now button.
  2. Enter the amount of your gift at the top of the page.
  3. Check “Recurring” if applicable.
  4. You do not need to have a Pay Pal account to make a donation, simply click the continue option near the credit card image to donate.
  5. Or, if you have a Pay Pal account, select Login In.
  6. Enter your contact and payment information.
  7. Click “Review Donation and Continue”
  8. If you wish to specify where your donation should be applied, please enter a note in the “Special Instructions” box.
  9. Click the “Donate Now” button.
  10. A receipt will be sent to your email address, but you can also print a receipt at this time.






To donate by mail:

Please send checks to:

Charleston City Ballet, 1910 Savannah Hwy., Charleston, SC 29407


Thank you for supporting professional ballet in Charleston!



Well trained dancers, carefully crafted choreography, beautiful costumes and awesome venues are only the most obvious parts of a professional, respected ballet company. It takes a lot of work behind the scenes - a true community effort! In short, we need your help.



Come see the performances – try to encourage community members who don’t already love the ballet to attend by hosting a pre or post performance event for your friends. Ballet is better with friends.

Become a Friend of the Ballet – members help provide the financial support necessary to offer high caliber dancers steady income through employment contracts. Members also get special benefits like, buying tickets to dress rehearsals, backstage tours, and invitations to special events. More info coming soon



Join our Street Team – as a “feet on street” marketeer, you may ask local businesses to display CCB event posters, or you may distribute CCB literature at local events and festivals.

On Call Volunteers – want to help as your schedule permits? We need short term help with mailings, event planning, ushering at performances, backstage dressers and more.

Grant writing – know your way around writing a successful grant proposal? Help us identify grant opportunities, create winning responses and teach other CCB volunteers.


To join us, please send an email to: getinvolved@charlestoncityballet.org

Contact Charleston City Ballet

Stay up to date - Join our email list:

(843) - 556 - 1343



1910 Savannah Hwy, Charleston SC 29407

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