Newport, R.I. — The internationally acclaimed Light of the World Ballet arrives in Newport April 30 for their first ever Rhode Island performance. This full-time professionally trained troupe is comprised of young women who are both technically trained as ballerinas and also educated as Christian ministers.  

Founded in 2005 by Director Ashley Rollinson, the organization is based in Rochester, New York  and has performed globally, including China, India, Kazakhstan, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Peru, Burma and Israel. A Christian based group the performers present the Gospel of Jesus Christ through the universally accepted arts of ballet and dance.

In 2005 when participating in international mission trips, Ms. Rollinson would carry her ballet slippers in case she had the opportunity to dance.  Invariably, the local people that were part of the mission effort would request a performance from Ms. Rollinson.  During her travels she found ballet to be a medium that was not hindered by language or custom.

“I saw how it (ballet) crossed over that barrier, that communication barrier and we were able to convey the love of Jesus….the artistic expression,” Ms. Rollinson told NCC News.

As part of the Kingdom Breakthrough New England event organized locally by EFC Newport  and Crosspoint Churches, the first ballet performance is 6 p.m. Saturday April 30, Rogers High School Auditorium, 15 Wickham Road.  A second performance will be held on Sunday May 1, at the  11 a.m. joint worship service at Jane Pickens Theatre, 49 Touro Street.  Admission is free and  open to all.

Ryan Belmore is the Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.