Cassandra Macino / Artistic Director
 
3157 Sylvania Ave., Toledo, OH 43613
 
419.475.0458
Alumni Testimonials
The Cassandra Ballet of Toledo is dedicated to training classical ballet to both children and adults with the highest quality of excellence. We provide young students with a full spectrum of dance knowledge and technique necessary to attain a professional level.

"I danced under Miss Cassandra from the age of six through high school graduation, and I am very happy with the level of instruction I received from her. Every one of her classes challenged me to push myself, and she always had constructive criticism to offer. Miss Cassandra’s teaching style is very detail oriented and meticulous, which gave me the ability to become strong in the challenging, technical art of classical ballet. She dedicated several hours per week to her students, giving us the foundation necessary to pursue professional careers in dance. Through her example, I learned the values of hard work and self-discipline, and how to push myself both mentally and physically to succeed. The opportunity to train with Miss Cassandra was a blessing I am truly grateful for."

- Amy Carmichael

"I started taking ballet classes at The Cassandra School of Ballet when I was three years old. I danced there for three years but then had to leave for personal reasons. I had the opportunity to return when I was 14 and continued dancing with Miss Cassandra throughout my four high school years. Even in the beginning, I quickly discovered my love for dance. Miss Cassandra taught me a love for ballet that I still carry with me today. Throughout my years as an advanced dancer I gained a deeper appreciation for the art of ballet and my love for dance. When I graduated high school, I went on to pursue a dance degree at Eastern University and just graduated in May. I am so thankful to Miss Cassandra for her dedication and determination to teach the pure art of ballet to her students. Ballet truly is the foundation for all of dance. It cultivates confidence, discipline, grace, poise, strength and flexibility. I have seen the qualities from my dance training with Miss Cassandra displayed in other areas of my life as well. The discipline and confidence that I learned in ballet carried over into my academic success in high school and later in college. Whoever said dancers were dumb must never have met a ballet dancer! Even today, although I am not dancing as much as I used to (or, frankly, as much as I would like) I can still see the effects of my training at The Cassandra School of Ballet displayed in my life. The hard work mentality that I learned and developed from my years of ballet training has carried over into my job and my determination to do well in everything with which I am faced. I am so thankful to Miss Cassandra for pouring her love of ballet into my life. I have always appreciated her hard work and dream to see her love of ballet shared with each new generation. Thanks to Miss Cassandra, I will never stop dancing!"

- Hannie Brake

"I began ballet lessons with Cassandra at the age of five and continued until I graduated high school at 18. Little did I know how much this would affect my life. Cassandra lead vigorous lessons and maintained the ‘true’ art of ballet. In each ballet class, I was taught to pay attention to detail, that only my best would do and that perseverance is a quality that must be practiced.  Because of Cassandra’s dedication to doing her best, I was given the opportunity to study under some wonderful teachers that Cassandra invited. These teachers were fantastic and allowed us to see different teaching styles however, it was Cassandra that really groomed me into the dancer that I was. It was her patience and dedication to help me become the dancer I was supposed to be that really got me there. With Cassandra it was more than just a “ballet” class. It was a class where I was shaped and molded. A class where I pushed my self and learned how to not give up. It was in these classes where she showed us that we need to do our best here because this is where God has put you and he would equip you to do it. Cassandra didn’t just teach the classes, she became invested in each of her students’ life and success. I danced a little in college, however was disappointed with the ballet program not being anywhere near Cassandra’s. 

However, it wasn’t just my dancing career that was affected by Cassandra and what she taught me. Cassandra taught me probably more life lessons than she will ever know. She taught me to be a woman of integrity, of character, to persevere even when things are tough and to pay attention to detail. She trained my photographic memory as we were shown a routine once and needed to have it memorized. (This has come in quite handy!) But one of the most important things that I can say that was shaped by Cassandra was my faith walk. I never left class without learning a lesson that would be applied to my walk with The Lord. 

All of the lessons she taught me, I currently apply to life every day! I am a wife to a wonderful man and I homeschool our five children.  Talk about perseverance. And if this wasn’t enough, I have started running marathons. Much to the chagrin of Cassandra. ;-)  But, wouldn’t you know whose voice I hear in my marathon training, and what lessons I pull on. It is Cassandra and all that she taught me. I only wish that I lived closer so my girls could experience Cassandra’s School of Ballet. Cassandra trains excellent and professional dancers, but she also turns out women who are equipped to tackle anything in life."

- Jenny Natzke

"At the age of four, I started taking ballet classes with Cassandra Macino at the Cassandra School of Ballet. At an age when I was more enamored with tutus, stages, and prancing around like a fairy, I had no idea what exceptional training I was receiving. Over time, my technique strengthened and my love of dance grew. With the support and dedication of my parents, I was blessed to be able to continue the training of ballet as well as Jazz and Modern dance, all of which gave me a well-roundedness to my dancing. Cassandra had high expectations and was willing to put in the passion and the work to help me rise to meet those expectations. As I entered high school, I participated in a high school dance team, putting my dance technique to use in a scholastic sport. At that time, Cassandra secured and prepared us for many exciting and prestigious performances including performances at TMA's Peristyle and the Toledo Zoo's Music Under the Stars, with by the Toledo Symphony. All the while we performed in Cassandra's yearly shows with a variety of numbers ranging from traditional classical ballet, high energy jazz, and breath taking worshipful dances. Those performances will be forever treasured in my heart, but the real reason I am forever indebted to Cassandra is what she did on a daily basis in the studio. She was the teacher that pushed me in the trajectory of excellence - to try and try again, to work hard until it was perfected, to embrace the beauty of movement, to take opportunities to move people through dance, and to live my life with grace and professionalism. Cassandra also gave me the opportunity to teach dance - to preschoolers, to middle schoolers, and to adults. I adored every minute of showing those ladies the technique and beauty of dance. That experience is part of what shaped me into the teacher I am today, as I have been teaching middle school Reading and Language Arts for 12 years. As a professional, I remember the ways she showed me to work persistently with each individual student and to give my all to the work and the gift that has been entrusted to me."

- Trinity Luetke (Gawron)



Former Alumni student, Amanda Macino, is practicing her "foot in the hand" ballet stretch on the
rocks that separate Australia & Antarctica, March 2014.

         
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