CalBal Scholarship and Teacher Mentorship Programs

CalBal and PSDF are committed to creating access to dance opportunities to people in underserved communities. CalBal and PSDF have two programs that aim to support this goal: the scholarship program and the teacher mentorship program.
Make a donation of any amount to support these programs.

The Scholarship Program

The scholarship program allows dancers to attend CalBal who otherwise could not afford it. This scholarship program has now run for two years at CalBal (2020 and 2023). The scholarship program allows dancers experiencing financial strain, particularly those from underserved communities, to attend the event without having to pay or work/volunteer at the event. Working/volunteering at an event can cut into dancers’ time and opportunities to learn and grow as dancers, performers, competitors, and teachers.  We want to create the most opportunity for growth for our scholarship recipients.

The scholarship program also supports dancers in attending other dance events than CalBal. The support of PSDF decreases the financial strain on those events to support scholarship dancers.

This program offers three different types of scholarships at CalBal:

  • Basic scholarship: Recipients receive entry to the event at no cost to them.
  • Partial scholarship: Twelve recipients receive entry to the event and a cash stipend that can be used towards travel, lodging, or meals related to attending the event.
  • Full scholarship: Four recipients receive an all-expenses-paid trip to attend the event including their travel (air & ground), lodging, and meals.

The Teacher Mentorship Program

The teacher mentorship program is new in 2023. This program will give at least 2 dancers access to connections and opportunities that are often necessary on the journey to  become a professional Balboa dancer/teacher. Mentees in this program will train with a Balboa mentor of their choosing at no cost to them.

The teacher mentorship program will cover the costs of a wide variety of training and experiences for both the mentee and mentor, including but not limited to the following:

  • All expenses paid for two weekend training sessions between mentor and mentee in the same city.
  • All expenses paid for traveling to teach at least part-time alongside their mentor at two events (including CalBal 2024).
  • Mentoring and support for creating bios, teaching contracts, class titles, syllabi, and general guidance related to teaching locally and booking events.
  • One hour of training for mentors to grow in their own coaching skills and cultural awareness.

If you are interested in learning more about the scholarship program or the teacher mentorship program, please contact us at

CalBal Music Sponsorship Programs

CalBal takes pride in celebrating music from the Swing era.  We strive to hire musicians from across the country to provide great and new music for our event.  Hiring more musicians, supporting new arrangements and transcriptions are a few things CalBal does to support today’s musicians to make a living.

Sponsor a Band

Sponsoring a band is a great way to support the ambitious music program we strive to have at CalBal each year. When you a sponsor a band your name and message (if you choose) will be on display on that night of live music and your money helps us hire musicians from around the country in 2023 and beyond.

At the Silver ($250–$499) level of sponsorship, you have the option to sponsor a band, but your donation in any amount helps support music at CalBal.


Sponsor a Song

Sponsoring a song means funding a new composition, transcription, or arrangement by one of our musicians to debut at CalBal 2023. Your money helps us pay one of our musicians to compose, arrange, or transcribe a song and also helps us pay for our overall music program. The song you sponsor might be a classic recording that has never been transcribed, or a new composition or arrangement that one of our musicians wants to work on. By sponsoring a song, your help us bring unique, new music to CalBal, and you contribute to the overall songbook available to the larger swing scene.

For CalBal 2023, Jonathan Stout will continue his tradition of providing six new songs for our Open Classic finals spotlights. The top Balboa competitors in the world will each be challenged to dance to a song no one has ever heard before. 

We’re also working with our other 2023 band-leaders to offer more options. Song sponsors will choose a song from our final list (the earlier you sponsor, the more choices you’ll have) and to receive recognition when that song is debuted at the event.

At the Gold ($500–$999) level of sponsorship, you have the option to sponsor a song, but your donation in any amount helps support music at CalBal.