Ivy Li

Berkeley City Ballet was my second home growing up. I danced at BCB from kindergarten through high school. Later in college, I returned to teach in the summer workshop and saw the next generation of BCB dancers growing into remarkable dancers.

The opportunities BCB gave me were endless because the staff and director cared deeply about giving students the best dance experience. I was only six years old when I had the privilege of dancing on a world-class stage – the very same stage that hosted international ballet companies around the world. I remember dancing right alongside professional dancers, who I looked to for inspiration and mentorship.

Thanks to the leadership of Director Elizabeth Godfrey, BCB provides an incredibly supportive environment for aspiring dancers. Elizabeth takes time to meet with individual students and parents because she is truly invested in the well-being of each dancer. I found that I could easily talk to Elizabeth and other teachers at BCB both about my progress as a dancer and my work in school.

BCB taught me more than just ballet. I learned about discipline, hard work, setting high expectations, and pursuing my passions. All of this has led me to an exciting career outside of dance including The New York Times Company, Scholastic Inc., New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Office, and now Bloomberg Philanthropies. In addition, I appreciate and enjoy attending ballet performances now as an audience member.

Over the years, I have become more and more impressed with the direction Elizabeth is taking BCB and confident that the school will continue to make dance in Berkeley accessible and fun for all who come to its doors.

Ivy Li
Bloomberg Philanthropies