Miss Tilly's Ballet and Theater Arts

Miss Tilly has taught ballet to the young people of San Francisco for more than 40 years.  She has introduced more than 10,000 budding ballerinas and danseurs to the joy and discipline of classical movement and music in a warm, supportive and beautiful environment.

Session I: September 23 - January 26 | Session 2: January 27 - May 16

Ballet Teachers

Miss Tilly


Miss Tilly’s standards of excellence come from her own professional ballet training.  Her parents gave her ballet lessons at The San Francisco Ballet School for her eleventh birthday and Miss Tilly left her first class completely entranced with dance. 

Miss Tilly trained and then danced professionally with the San Francisco Ballet Company during a very exciting era.  She and the other company members traveled internationally as American ambassadors for the United States Government.  The San Francisco Ballet Company toured countries in the Far East, South America and the Middle East, performing in grand opera houses for kings of countries that no longer exist as well as on hand-crafted stages for communities who had never seen women in tutus before.

After Miss Tilly stopped dancing professionally she taught at The San Francisco Ballet School for six years.  Her early dancing and teaching experience was under the tutelage of the Christensen brothers, the founders of San Francisco Ballet School and Company. The dancers and teachers trained by the Christensens have always been among the most respected and successful in the world of professional dance.

Miss Tilly began her own ballet school forty years ago.  Her mother, Irene Abbe, was a master teacher at The Hamlin School.  The combination of Miss Tilly’s own classical dance training and study combined with her natural affinity for children and teaching, inculcated by her mother’s profession, made the idea of beginning her own school compelling.  Miss Tilly converted the basement of her Victorian house on California Street into a lovely ballet studio and began teaching the children of San Francisco.

Since then, generations of San Francisco’s children have been introduced to the beauty and wonder of ballet and classical music by Miss Tilly.

Through Miss Tilly’s program, children will learn coordination, musical awareness, and rhythm development, in addition to classical ballet technique. One of many aspects differentiating Miss Tilly’s program from other ballet schools is that Miss Tilly’s young dancers are accompanied by professional pianists in every class. The beauty of classical music helps to guide the students as they learn to marry movement and music.

Miss Tilly teaches her students much more than dance. Her students learn to focus, develop listening skills, and work beautifully in a group by exercising self discipline and demonstrating respect for themselves and their fellow dancers. All of this learning happens in a joyful, warm, and supportive environment.

Miss Ausjoli

Miss Ausjoli began her life as a dancer at the age of three.  Miss Ausjoli has studied, performed, taught and choreographed ballet, modern, temporary release, jazz, tap and hip-hop in and around Boston, where she was born.  While in college, she studied under renowned artists including Bill Evans, Laura Young (Boston Ballet), Gregory King (Lion King on Broadway), Donlin Forman (Martha Graham Company) and many more.

Ausjoli performed in many showcases at Dean College, as well as the American College Dance Festival and with the Urbanity Contemporary Dance Company of Boston.  One of her great joys and strength is choreographing original works.  Miss Ausjoli had the honor of having one of her pieces chosen and performed at the Southern Vermont Dance Festival. 

Aside from being an artist, Miss Ausjoli loves to teach.  Her students have ranged in age from toddlers to adults.  She has instructed her students at Greater Boston dance studios, in a wide range of styles, from ballet to modern to hip-hop, before relocating to San Francisco.

After earning her Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance, Miss Ausjoli moved to San Francisco to fulfill her dream of living and teaching in California.  She currently teaches Creative Movement at a preschool, as well as Barre and Pilates at Mint Studios.

Teaching dance comes naturally to Ausjoli.  Seeing her students' passion and progress, brings her tremendous joy.  Miss Ausjoli believes teaching dance is her calling.  She says, "It's so rewarding to educate my students in all forms of dance and share my passion for movement.  I love helping my students discover and achieve their fullest potential and allowing them to recognize their accomplishments. My guilding principle is: 'Be strong, be beautiful, be you'."