History

Brighton School of Ballet continues from a rich legacy of excellence…

In May 1976, Deborah Shiposh opened the Brighton School of Ballet in downtown Brighton. With her commitment to a high standard of classical ballet training, it was recognized as a serious ballet school for a quarter of a century, bringing the arts to Livingston County by staging annual productions of the Nutcracker in December since 1986, as well, staging other ballet classics in the spring (Les Sylphides, Pas de Quatre, Swan Lake, Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Ballet School, Alice in Wonderland, Madeline, Can-Can, Peter and the Wolf, Variations on a Flute, and more).  In 2000, Mrs. Shiposh felt called to integrate her Christian faith with her life’s work and subsequently joined forces with Debbie Tweedie to found Fountain Dance Ministry. Their mutual vision was to maintain the strong commitment to excellence in dance training which had become a hallmark of the school, but also to incorporate a new, more meaningful dimension to the expression of dance. Based on their belief that beautiful dance is not only a reflection of the movement of the body, but also of the soul, their stated purpose was to train dancers who are not only graceful and technically correct, but also who have a heart for the Lord. Originally established as a branch of the Brighton School of Ballet  in 2000, the new youth classes grew to encompass the entire school.  In 2005, it was officially fully transitioned to Fountain Dance Ministry. In addition, a resident Dance Ministry Performing Company was later formed with the purpose of expanding their contribution to the community beyond the arts to include dance as a form of worship and ministry.  To date, our school maintains this resident performing company as, Fountain Dance Ministry.

After Debbie Tweedie’s retirement from her co-directorship with Deborah in mid 2013, the role was given to Deborah Shiposh’s daughter, Katrina Frelich, a long time teacher & assistant within the school.   The mother & daughter pair cherished their year working together as a team.   As of the fall 2014, Deborah Shiposh has retired from her long, successful career and joyfully ‘passes the baton’ to Katrina, who continues to run the school as Fountain Ballet Academy (2014-2016)  and now again as Brighton School of Ballet (fall 2016).