The Children’s Ballet Returns to the Tobin with Swan Lake

Friday 30th, April 2021 / 08:32 Written by
The Children’s Ballet Returns to the Tobin with Swan Lake

The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio Returns to the Stage in Swan Lake at the Tobin Center in May

The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio returns to the stage for the first time in over a year with Tchaikovsky’s beloved Swan Lake May 21-22 at the Tobin Center. Arts lovers won’t want to miss San Antonio’s prestigious rising stars as they take flight with critically acclaimed, Hungarian-born guest artist Mate Szentes. From Moscow to Monaco, Paris to London, Amsterdam and beyond, CBSA’s elite dancers continue to earn global recognition winning top honors from the most elite ballet competitions in ballet while receiving invitations to train with the best academies in the world. Catch them back on the stage this May!


The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio (CBSA) is set to make a splash with the production of the iconic classic, Swan Lake, brought to life by the award-winning, Artistic Director and Founder Vanessa Bessler. With nationally and internationally acclaimed dancers ranging in age from 3 to 21, viewers can see the future of ballet spinning into shape right before their very eyes. 

Swan Lake tells the love story of Prince Siegfried and Odette, a beautiful swan princess. The fairytale comes to life with a full-length production featuring dazzling costumes custom made in Moscow, integrated multimedia scenery, and a talented array of over 140 award-winning classical dancers, gifted special needs artists, and many other exceptional young children rounding out the talented ensemble cast.

“Swan Lake is the most celebrated ballet in the world and one of the most challenging and beautiful to perform,” says six-time Youth America Grand Prix Outstanding Teacher Award Winner and Children’s Ballet Director Vanessa Bessler. “Many of our dancers have received scholarships and acceptance to attend the best academies in the world and gained international acclaim from the most elite competitions in ballet since they last performed Swan Lake several years ago. We can’t wait to return to the theatre and celebrate Tchaikovsky’s largest and most acclaimed masterpiece. They are ready and excited to take to the stage once again.”

Critically acclaimed Hungarian-born principal dancer Mate Szentes will accompany the young dancers as Prince Siegfried. Known for his “bold attacks” and “glittering technique” by art critics, Szentes receives invitations to perform worldwide from Vienna to Japan. He works with world-renowned choreographers such as Ma Cong, Val Caniparoli, Mariana Oliveira, Melissa Barak, Katarzyna Skarpetowska, Annabelle Lopez-Ochoa, among many others, and danced as a company artist around the world, as well as a principal dancer for the Richmond Ballet.

Mate is a permanent guest principal dancer with the American Contemporary Ballet and Raiford Rogers Modern Ballet. He was invited to participate in the very prestigious National Choreographers Initiative in 2016 and 2018. Since 2016 he has choreographed original works showcased in Richmond, San Diego and New Mexico.

Mate Szentes

“Artists of this caliber receive invitations to perform all over the world, so it’s extremely exciting to get them here in San Antonio. Mate’s path with success at such a young age is something that our dancers can learn from and relate to.

His more recent achievements as a dancer and choreographer make this production a fantastic experience for both our audience and our dancers. We strive to provide opportunities to train and perform with the best of the best, and we can’t wait to share the beautiful results with our audience,” says Bessler.

The dancers will perform the ballet using choreography based on the revival of the production created by Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov that was first staged for the Imperial Ballet in 1895 at the Mariinsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia. To add to the majesty of the production, they will be wearing beautiful, elaborate costumes created by a leading costume maker in Russia whose work can be seen at the top theatres around the world.


Since its inception just six years ago, The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio has quickly raised the “barre” on the art scene in San Antonio by garnering an impressive and extensive number of “firsts” for the city from the most prestigious ballet competitions in the world such as The Prix De Lausanne, The Youth American Grand Prix, The USA International Ballet Competition, Celebrity Dance Competition, and The American Dance Competition-International Ballet Competition.

Furthermore, dancers are awarded scholarships and acceptance to such prestigious schools as the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, the Royal Ballet School in London, the Vaganova Ballet Academy in St. Petersburg, the Dutch National Ballet Academy in Amsterdam, Princess Grace Academy in Monaco, the Ballet School of the Opera National de Paris, the American Ballet Theatre and the School of American Ballet both in New York, and more.

The Children’s Ballet continues to enforce extensive safety protocols to include both virtual and limited capacity in-person rehearsals, screenings, masks, gloves, long sleeves, social distancing and much more. As a result, the organization has been Covid free since reopening its doors on May 23, 2020. The Tobin Center leads the charge on safety precautions that have allowed the arts and entertainment to continue by enforcing strict safety initiatives, limited capacity and mask mandates that exceed both federal and state requirements.

Ballet and performing arts lovers, parents, grandparents and children of all ages won’t want to miss this breathtaking performance by some of San Antonio’s most prestigious rising artists.


Friday, May 21, 7:00 P.M.

Saturday, May 22, 2:00 P.M.

Saturday, May 22, 7:00 P.M.


Tobin Center for Performing Arts

100 Auditorium Circle

San Antonio, TX 78205


Tickets are available at the Tobin Center Box Office

About the Children’s Ballet of San Antonio

The award-winning Children’s Ballet of San Antonio (CBSA) is an authentic, professional-level ballet company that produces professionally staged productions showcasing San Antonio’s most talented children. Dancers are selected by invitation or audition. The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio is a nonprofit organization 501(c)3. For more information, visit or call 210-462-7660.

Mission: The Children’s Ballet of San Antonio (CBSA) seeks to inspire the pursuit of excellence and prepare children for productive and creative lives through dance by offering extensive training and performance opportunities for talented children from all backgrounds.

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