Memoirs: Ellen Tharp, founder of the Staten Island Ballet

Memoirs 960x640 2018 2 Ellen Tharp
Ellen Tharp, offered Layna Mamoni a scholarship after seeing her perform at the SI School of Civic Leadership.  (SI Advance/
Jan Somma-Hammel)


Ellen Tharp took her first ballet step at the early age of 3.  When she was 7, she accompanied her father to her first live ballet, at the old Paramount Theatre on Bay Street.  It was in that moment that Ellen decided she wanted to be a professional dancer.  She studied ballet at a number of schools -- some in Manhattan -- and soon realized her dream to dance in professional companies.

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