Wings, OKC Ballet Team Up To Provide Classes For Adults With Developmental Disabilities

Tuesday, January 11th 2022, 6:27 pm


Wings OKC is a nonprofit in Edmond designed to enhance the lives of adults with developmental disabilities in many ways.  

“Everybody needs a purpose and Wings gives adults with developmental disabilities a purpose,” said Brenda McClain, with Wings.  

That purpose could even be ballet thanks to a new program with the Oklahoma City Ballet.  

“This is not an opportunity that often times people in our population have the opportunity get to do,” said McClain.  

The OKC ballet program was modified especially for the participants in the Wings program.  

“We found great success there. The participants love the program, love getting to move and dance with Ms. Amber and have found a lot of benefits from it,” said Stephanie Pitts with the OKC Ballet.  

Since the program's launch, instructors say those participating are finding unconventional ways to dance.  

“You’ll see a person in a wheelchair doing what we call Tondu, and so pointing your front and back, instead they will roll their chair forward and backward on their own a lot of times finding ways to adapt,” said Pitts.  

And while the instructors are amazed with the participants, the staff at Wings say it's the other way around, they're blown away by their teachers.  

“So, to have someone come in and teach you something in a fun way, this is not a strict ballet class where everybody is doing everything just right, it’s not designed for that it is designed for them to have fun,” said McClain.  

The participants are without question having fun and looking forward to ballet every Tuesday.  

“So, they are ready to introduce themselves to you. They are ready to give you a hug, they are ready to move together and have fun, said Pitts.  

A class favorite is freeze dance.  

“So, they get to dance on their own and then the music stops, and they have to freeze. And to see them let loose and interpret the music in the own bodies is pretty amazing,” said Pitts.  

Eliminating excuses and enjoying new challenges, maybe it’s something we can all take from this.