Manhattan Movement & Arts Center was developed by Rose Caiola as the home of the Manhattan Youth Ballet, a graded, pre-professional ballet academy and performance company. Ms. Caiola, a lifelong dance enthusiast and a former actress, founded the academy in fall of 1994 as Studio Maestro at 48 W. 68th Street, and serves today as the youth ballet’s executive artistic director.
The school is modeled after the European academies and adheres to the classical ballet technique. Under the direction of Rose Caiola, artistic director, the Manhattan Youth Ballet has acquired a reputation for excellent teaching in an intimate and individually supportive environment. The school’s graduates have danced professionally with American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, Nederland Dans Theater, Ballet de Espana, San Francisco Ballet and Complexions.
As the ballet academy grew, the search for a larger space inspired in Ms. Caiola a highly personal vision of a studio and theater complex that would encompass all aspects of dance education and performance.
MMAC opened its doors in June 2008, occupying a dramatic bi-level space within The Element, a luxury high-rise condominium located to the southwest of Lincoln Center. In addition to the Manhattan Youth Ballet, MMAC’s studios and theater host the MMAC Kids program, Broadway lockouts, summer intensive programs, as well as an array of performances and special events.
Ms. Caiola’s commitment to artistry through dance is reflected today in a large expressionist mural by the artist Jessica Winer that defines both MMAC’s physical and conceptual center.