Behind the Scenes of Roxey Ballet's Sensory Friendly Performance: Meet Hailey Glover
An Interview with Hailey Glover, Roxey Ballet's Director of Education and Outreach
Why is it important for Roxey Ballet to have a sensory friendly performance?
Roxey Ballet's mission is to build bridges through dance, to connect people from out local community no matter their ability, race, gender or socioeconomic status. Adding a sensory-friendly performance to our roster of Nutcracker performances has allowed us to connect with another group of patrons with special needs.
Why is it important for you, personally, to include this performance?
This performance is perhaps the most exciting thing I have done in my time at Roxey Ballet. Prior to working at the ballet, I worked at an out-of-district placement school for students with disabilities. I worked as a paraprofessional in an autism classroom for many years and became extraordinarily passionate about children with autism. In my years at the school, I always said that my absolute dream would be to connect my love of dance with my love of working with this extraordinary, and now, thanks to this performance, I get to see my dreams become a reality. It really is something special.
What message do you want families with special needs to know about Roxey Ballet?
We welcome families with special needs with open arms! Our sensory-friendly performance is just one of the ways we make dance accessible to everyone. During our sensory-friendly performances, we strive to create an atmosphere for friends and families with special needs to come as they are and let their abilities shine. We want you to be comfortable and have an enjoyable afternoon experiencing dance and celebrating the holiday season.
What is your role at Roxey Ballet?
My role at Roxey Ballet is the Director of Education and Community Engagement. Before coming to Roxey Ballet, my dream was to create an environment where I could connect dance with my other passion, children with special needs. Since joining the staff at Roxey, I have helped to grow our educational outreach programming to reach more and more of the special needs community. We are currently working with over 100 students with disabilities from 5 schools our surrounding counties of Hunterdon, Somerset, Mercer and Bucks. My hope is to keep these programs growing to expose everyone to dance.
For more information on Roxey Ballet's sensory-friendly Nutcracker, visit http://www.roxeyballet.org/sensory-friendly-performances