Teen Entrepreneurs on The Freecoast

EditorEducation, Freecoast Festival

Several families on the Freecoast choose alternative forms of education for their families. This is one mother’s story of her daughter’s love of ballet guiding her education and now her career.

This story begins many years ago with a little girl in a pink leotard with her eyes set on the stage. Beth began dancing Classical Ballet at the age of 4. It was very clear from a young age that she was very focused and had big dreams.

At age 10, she was dancing in multiple studios to receive training in various styles of Dance. Her dreams of dancing professionally, and someday owning a studio, were growing large.

When she was 13 everything changed. Beth was given a student teaching job.
She was teaching young children the love of Ballet, and that’s when her teaching heart began to beat. Beth has continued her professional training, but now with the goal to someday teach dance, and owning her own school.

Benji and Beth in the studio

At the age of 15 she decided that the following summer, she would go to Las Vegas and receive training to be a Certified Dance Teacher. Her life-long friend Benji also had a passion to teach, as well as a dream of one day owning a dance school. Together they made plans for the summer not knowing what would happen in the months before they would go.

Through the years, Beth and Benji had both been traveling to large dance schools to receive training, and they both attended a small Ballet school together in Milton, NH taught by an amazing teacher and mentor, Debs Grammatic.

In the Spring before they would leave for Vegas, Miss Debs decided to leave this small school of 20 students. And rather than closing it, offered to give it to Beth and Benji, who were shocked and excited, and a little scared. At age 16 & 18, could they start a business?

Students to Teachers to… Owners?

They started the wheels turning, filing their LLC paperwork and the journey began!

Ballet to Broadway Dance officially opened their doors in September 2018, offering many styles of dance from Ballet to Tap, and Jazz to Hip Hop. They now have over 50 students and have plans to expand. Beth is planning to attend Acro-Dance Teacher Training this Summer and Benji plans on receiving his Zumba certification.

Beth instructing PorcDen judges during the competition

In September they entered the PorcDen competition at the 2018 Freecoast Festival. Although insanely nervous, they knocked it out of the park when they had the judges doing Ballet on stage. Winning this competition has given them a confidence boost and gave them the funds to update the flooring in their studio.

Together, they enjoy teaching and sharing their love of dance with the people of rural New Hampshire. Watching their dreams come true with their hard work and dedication has been truly a blessing to watch. I know tears will flow at their first recital on June 29, at the Farmington Opera House.

Homeschooling Along the Way

Some fun things Benji and Beth have done as part of their homeschool curriculum are: taking financial classes, as well as accounting, entrepreneurial, physical science and herbal medicine classes. Homeschooling has also allowed flexibility in her schedule to teach dance every afternoon.

Both Benji Robichaud and Beth Ellis have been homeschooled from the beginning. Benji graduated in 2018 and Beth will graduate in 2020. If you are interested in their studio schedule and what classes they offer, visit them at www.ballettobroadwaydancenh.com

Author: Janet E. , Proud Mum