Jury Panel Archives

2021 JURY & SELECTION COMMITTEE

Mr. Broomhead, most notably, was a Principal Dancer with The Royal Ballet and Houston Ballet, performing in and often originating numerous leading roles. He also served as Houston Ballet’s Ballet Master, and has traveled all around the world as a dancer, coach and judge, with a strong involvement in the Youth America Grand Prix. Now, as School Director, Mr. Broomhead will work closely with Artistic Director Robert Hill to oversee the artistic and instructional leadership of Orlando Ballet School.

PHILLIP BROOMHEAD

Orlando Ballet

School Director

ADRIENNE CANTERNA

Kirov Academy of Ballet

Kirov Academy of Ballet scholarship graduate Adrienne Canterna is the recipient of numerous national and
international awards including winning the GOLD medal at the 1998 USA International Ballet Competition at 15 years old. Adrienne tours the United States, Europe, Asia, Australia, Canada and more as a dancer, choreographer, model & juror.

 

As a Principal guest ballerina she danced the roles of Gamzatti in "La Bayadere", the Sugar Plum Fairy in "The Nutcracker", and Kitri in "Don Quixote". She has also danced with the Washington Ballet and Complexions Contemporary Ballet in NYC where she was partnered by Desmond Richardson.
 

She has appeared in numerous galas worldwide including the "Vail International Dance Festival", "Dance Open Ballet Festival" in Russia, "Gala de Danza", "Dancers Against Cancer" in NYC and "Les Gala des Etoiles" where she performed "Le Corsaire" pas de duex with international ballet star, Carlos Acosta. She appeared as a soloist in the PBS TV tribute to Placido Domingo, in a segment directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen. She can be seen as a ballet soloist in the motion picture "Step Up".
 

Adrienne is the choreographer & co-creator of the international hit dance show "ROCK the Ballet". After touring over 30 countries since 2008, RTB continues to wow audiences across the globe. Adrienne was a special guest performer & choreographer for BAD BOYS of DANCE on FOX TV's "So You Think You Can Dance". In 2014, Adrienne founded BAD BOYS of BALLET & they became Semi-Finalists on Season 9 of the hit TV show "America's Got Talent". Adrienne is the proud mother of daughter Anami Halo, Founder of SweetBirdProductions, and faculty of Kirov Academy of Ballet.

EDWARD ELLISON

Ellison Ballet
Artistic Director

Edward Ellison has traveled the world as a dancer, teacher, choreographer and ballet master. Companies he has taught for include American Ballet Theatre, Houston Ballet, Alvin Ailey and the Metropolitan Opera Ballet. He has been a guest teacher with The Juilliard School and Joffrey Ballet School, and continues to teach open classes at STEPS on Broadway.

 

As a ballet master, he has worked for such companies as the Boston Ballet, Norwegian National Ballet and Alberta Ballet, as well as staging Helgi Tomasson's Nutcracker for San Francisco Ballet's annual tour. With love and devotion to his students guiding his work, his approach is infused by study and close association with renown ballet masters and directors, such as Larisa Sklyanskaya, Helgi Tomasson, Irina Jacobson and Marius Zirra. He particularly credits his years of pedagogical study with Ms. Sklyanskaya for the depth of his artistic knowledge, as well as teacher courses at the Vaganova Ballet Academy in Russia and the National Ballet School in Canada.

 

A former soloist with the San Francisco Ballet and guest artist with many companies in the U.S. and abroad, Mr. Ellison's repertoire spans the great classical works of the 19th century to neoclassical and contemporary choreography of the 20th century and today.

 

Mr. Ellison employs a combination of detailed technical insight — including precise verbal and physical guidance to ensure proper alignment, placement, strength and coordinaton of the body — and artistic vision to excite and advance the student's journey. As Founder & Artistic Director of Ellison Ballet, Mr. Ellison has crafted an intensive study program to meet the needs of gifted ballet students from around the world who wish to dance professionally. Both the Summer Intensive and the in-depth Professional Training Program offer a stepping stone approach to realize new levels of achievement. The classes emphasize development of strong classical ballet technique, the exploration and discovery of the student's full artistic potential, and individual attention from the ballet master.

ERICA FISCHBACH

Colorado Ballet
School Director

Academy Director Erica Fischbach enjoyed a 20-year professional ballet career with American Ballet Theatre and Pacific Northwest Ballet before embarking on her current teaching career. Ms. Fischbach is certified in the American Ballet Theatre Curriculum.

 

At 15, Ms. Fischbach was awarded a scholarship to attend the North Carolina School of the Arts for three years where she studied primarily with Balanchine’s muse Melissa Hayden, American Ballet Theatre’s Fanchon Cordell, and Ballet Russe’s Duncan Noble.

 

During her first months as a professional dancer, Ms. Fischbach had the privilege of dancing Balanchine ballets as a principal under the direction of Edward Villella before accepting a position with Pacific Northwest Ballet, where she danced principal and soloist roles in numerous Balanchine ballets. After nine years with PNB, Ms. Fischbach took two years away from company life and freelanced as a guest artist.

 

In 1996 Ms. Fischbach was invited to join American Ballet Theatre under the direction of Kevin McKenzie, where she danced until 2005. Ms. Fischbach had roles created for her in world premier ballets by Lar Lubovitch, Mark Morris, Twyla Tharp, Paul Taylor, and Kevin McKenzie and danced principal roles in ballets by Anthony Tudor, Twyla Tharp, Jiri Kylian, and Agnes DeMille. She also enjoyed featured roles in the company’s full-length classical repertoire.

 

Ms. Fischbach is thrilled to lead Colorado Ballet Academy’s team of dedicated, world-class professionals.

HEATHER FRYXELL

Ballet West
Academy Principal

Heather Fryxell received her early dance training with Thomas Armour in Miami, Florida. Ms. Fryxell attended the University of Utah and Brigham Young University, majoring in English literature and educational psychology while on a full tuition talent scholarship. Ms. Fryxell then danced with the Atlanta Ballet before joining Southern Ballet Theatre (currently Orlando Ballet) as a principal dancer. During her eleven year tenure with the company, she also taught in the company’s school and served as a lecture demonstration coordinator for the outreach program.

 

In her last year with Southern Ballet Theatre, Ms. Fryxell directed the School of Southern Ballet Theatre. In addition to these positions, she also created her own adaptive dance program, Movement Mentor, to teach children and adults of special abilities. Movement Mentor is now a part of the Ballet West education and outreach program . In 2000, Ms. Fryxell co-founded the Central Florida Ballet. There she directed the school, the student company, and developed her adaptive dance program. Ms. Fryxell moved to Utah and joined the faculty of Ballet West Academy in 2005. She was later promoted to the position of Academy Principal.

 

Ms. Fryxell has danced the principal roles in all the great classical ballets, and she has also performed in Balanchine ballets and numerous contemporary works.

MARJORIE GRUNDVIG

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
School Director

Ms. Grundvig began her ballet training in her hometown of Davis, California, and with Marguerite Phares in 

Sacramento, California. Additionally, she spent summers on scholarship with San Francisco Ballet School.  

 

At the age of 17, Ms. Grundvig joined the North Carolina Dance Theatre. She continued her performing career as a soloist with both the Tulsa Ballet and the Boston Ballet.  

 

She has guest taught at many schools, both nationally and internationally, in addition to touring nationally to audition students for the annual summer programs of Boston Ballet and PBT.

 

Ms. Grundvig directed the ballet department of the Washington Academy of Performing Arts in Seattle prior to being appointed Director of the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School in August 2005. Since 

starting at PBT, Ms. Grundvig has been part of a leadership team that has managed to increase total school 

enrollment by more than 30%.

CHRISTOPHER HIRD

Sarasota Ballet
Director of Education

Christopher Hird is from England and studied the Royal Academy of Dance syllabi before training at The Royal Ballet School. He toured Europe as part of a company headlined by the internationally acclaimed ballerina, Sylvie Guillem. After retiring from the stage, Hird worked as the Assistant to the Director of the British Ballet Organization, and later as Assistant to the Development Manager at The Royal Ballet School. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Dance from the University of Roehampton and a Diploma from Canada’s National Ballet School’s Teacher Training Program.

 

Hird joined Boston Ballet School in 2003 and was promoted to Artistic Manager in 2009. He was a main teacher for students in the Pre-Professional and Classical Ballet Programs as well as being part of the Senior Leadership Team. Hird has staged ballets for the School including Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, La Bayadère, and Sir Frederick Ashton’s Les Patineurs, Les Rendezvous and La Fille mal Gardée. Hird was also a Children’s Ballet Master for Boston Ballet’s The Nutcracker.

 

In 2013, Hird was appointed Head of Adult Programming. He has led the artistic vision for the redesign of the program as well as been instrumental in developing and enhancing the adult students’ engagement with Boston Ballet.

 

Hird has served on the international jury of the Japan Grand Prix in 2008 and 2010, the Surrey Festival of Dance (Canada) in 2007 and 2008, the Goiania Dance Festival (Brazil) in 2012 and 2015. He has been a guest teacher for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Canada’s National Ballet School, Cecchetti Council of America and Harvard University.

 

The Sarasota Ballet appointed Christopher Hird as Director of Education and Principal for the Margaret Barbieri Conservatory in July 2016. 

ALEXEY KULPIN

The Harid Conservatory
 

Alexey Kulpin is a graduate of the University of Culture and Art in St. Petersburg, Russia. He holds both bachelor’s and master’s degrees in ballet methodology and choreography. In 1998, he was the Grand Prix winner at the Muse of St. Petersburg Ballet Competition.

As a professional dancer, Mr. Kulpin has performed soloist and principal roles in both classical and contemporary ballets in Russia, Israel, and the United States. He danced professionally with St. Petersburg State Opera Ballet, St. Petersburg State Male Theatre by Mihailovsky, Ballet Israel, City Ballet of San Diego, Grand Rapids Ballet, Charleston Ballet Theater, Stars of St. Petersburg Municipal Theater of Music and Dance, and Krasnoyarsk Dance Ensemble. His roles included Basilio in Don Quixote; James in La Sylphide; Prince Ivan in Firebird; Spirit of the Rose in Le Spectre de la Rose; Swan Lake Pas de Trois; and the male leads in Tarentella and Maurice Bejart’s Trik Trak.

Mr. Kulpin specializes in teaching classical ballet, male and female variations, and character dance. His teaching career includes the Ballet Israel School, City Ballet of San Diego, Grand Rapids Ballet, and Charleston Ballet Company, where he taught company classes and served as director of the Charleston Ballet Young Artists Group. Most recently, he served as principal ballet teacher for Northern California Dance Conservatory. He has staged classical variations and choreographed solos for performance and ballet competitions. Mr. Kulpin joined The HARID Conservatory’s faculty in August, 2016.

STEPHANE LEONARD

Royal Winnipeg Ballet

School Director

Stéphane Léonard first tread the halls of Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet as a Company Soloist in 1998. His dynamic performances earned him coveted roles such as Tybalt (Rudi van Dantzig’s Romeo & Juliet), and Hilarion and Peasant Pas de Quatre (Sir Peter Wright’s Giselle). During a successful career he performed solo roles in various neo-classical and contemporary repertoire by choreographers such as George Balanchine, John Cranko, and James Kudelka. He also had the great honour of being selected to work with Sir Anthony Dowell on The Dream by Sir Frederick Ashton & with the great Jerome Robbins on The Concert.

 

Mr. Léonard began his early training in Montréal under the tutelage and mentorship of Ms Natasha Izbinsky and continued his studies at the prestigious Vaganova Academy in St. Petersburg, Russia. Following his graduation in 1992, Mr. Léonard made his professional debut with the National Ballet of Canada under the direction of Reid Anderson. In 1995, Mr. Léonard joined the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory Ballet and Opera under the direction of Nikita Dolgushin and performed principal roles such as Prince Désiré (The Sleeping Beauty), The Poet (Les Sylphides) and Nutcracker Prince (Nutcracker) . In 1998, Mr. Léonard returned to Canada to join the RWB Company. Upon his retirement in 2002, he assumed the position of RWB School Aspirant Program Director and in 2016 began his esteemed role as School Director.

ARLENE MINKHORST

Tulsa Ballet

School Director

Arlene Minkhorst graduated from the National Ballet School of Canada in 1976, and from Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet School in 1979. She performed in numerous productions with the RWB Company before directing her energies into teaching full-time.

 

Ms. Minkhorst first joined the RWB School faculty in 1989, and was appointed Vice-Principal in 1991. At the commencement of the 2002-2003 season, she was appointed Associate Director, and in July 2004, she took over the Directorship of the RWB School from Founding Director, David Moroni, C.M.

 

Ms. Minkhorst has taught all levels of ballet and pointe technique, repertoire classes, conducted rehearsals for performances, and taught in the RWB School Professional Division Teacher Training Program. She has toured Manitoba and presented lectures about dance and dance training in public schools.

 

A dedicated pedagogue in classical ballet training, Ms. Minkhorst regularly pursues opportunities to further her own knowledge of her chosen field, and has travelled to observe classes, performances and operations at other internationally recognized schools.

 

Prior to taking over the Directorship of the RWB School, Ms. Minkhorst integrated academics and ballet training. She subsequently developed, pursued and implemented a supportive academic/dance structure with Winnipeg school divisions, middle schools and high schools.

 

During her tenure Ms. Minkhorst forged partnerships and raised the School’s profile within the international dance community. The School is now a partner with the Prix de Lausanne and enjoys exchange programs with the New Zealand School of Dance and Canada’s National Ballet School.

PASCAL MOLAT

San Francisco Ballet
Trainee Program Assistant

Born in Paris, Pascal Molat trained at Paris Opera Ballet School and danced with Royal Ballet of Flanders and Les Ballets de Monte-Carlo before joining SF Ballet as a soloist in 2002. He was promoted to principal dancer the following year.

Molat’s repertory includes principal and featured roles in Don Quixote, Sylvia, Romeo & Juliet, Onegin, Giselle, and The Little Mermaid, among others. He created principal roles in Elo’s Double Evil; McGregor’s Borderlands; Morris’ Beaux and Joyride; Possokhov’s RAkU, Firebird, Reflections, Study in Motion, and Swimmer; Tomasson’s Concerto Grosso, Blue Rose, and 7 for Eight; Wheeldon’s Number Nine and Rush; Ratmansky’s From Foreign Lands; Taylor’s Spring Round; and Zanella’s Underskin. Molat has also danced in works choreographed by Ashton, Balanchine, Béjart, Bintley, Fokine, Forsythe, Kylián, MacMillan, Maillot, Robbins, Tudor, and Van Manen.

Molat danced the role of Mercutio in the 2015 film of Tomasson’s Romeo & Juliet for Lincoln Center at the Movies: Great American Dance. After retiring from the Company in 2016, he joined the SF Ballet School Faculty.

CLAUDIO MUNOZ

Houston Ballet II
Director & Ballet Master

During his career as a dancer, Mr. Munoz filled Principal roles in Peru, Uruguay, Argentina, and New York, with a variety of choreographers including John Cranko, George Balanchine, Ivan Nagy, V. Bebrada, A. Rodriguez, W. Dollar, L.de Layres, Ben Stevenson, and Ronald Hynd, (in whose work, Rosalinda, he partnered the esteemed Russian ballerina Natalia Makarova). Mr. Munoz was also involved in other forums for dance, such as Zarzuela, television, musical comedy, and opera.

 

In 1989 he founded the Chamber Ballet of Santiago. Mr. Munoz has taught classes and seminars in Paraguay, Bolivia, Peru, and the United States. He has worked as an instructor for the Ballet Nacional de Chile, Ballet de Santiago, Ballet Nacional de Peru, and schools in Asucion, Peru.

 

The dancers Mr. Munoz has coached have won the silver medal at the International Ballet Competition in Jackson (1990) and third place in the Shanghai International Ballet Competition (1995). In 1996, Mr. Munoz was awarded “Best Teacher” at the Interdance Competition in Asuncion, Paraguay. He has coached students for the Prix de Lausanne who have won six medals in the past seven years.

 

Mr. Munoz joined Houston Ballet Academy as Ballet Master in 1999. As HBII Ballet Master, Mr. Munoz is responsible for the artistic leadership, teaching, choreography, curriculum syllabus development, and supervision of all HBII students to promote the studio performance of Houston Ballet. He has staged a ballet for Ben Stevenson at Florida Ballet, and also staged Stanton Welch’s work at Cincinnati Ballet and Tulsa Ballet. In addition, Mr. Munoz coaches students for the Prix de Lausanne (winning six prizes in the last seven years) and Beijing International Ballet Competition. Currently he serves on the jury and a teacher in the Junior Ballet Competition Japan Grand Prix, and in the Youth American Grand Prix (Mexico, Japan, Brazil, Europe, and New York). As a teacher, he has taught around the world from Canada, Argentina, Australia, Europe, all over Latin America and the United States.

XIOMARA REYES

The Washington Ballet
Head of Professional
Training Division

Xiomara Reyes, Head of the Professional Training Division at TWSB, performed as a soloist and principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre for 14 years before retiring from the stage in 2015. She was born in Cuba, studied at Cuba’s National Ballet School and later joined The National Ballet of Cuba where she performed in the corps de ballet and as a soloist. She has also performed principal roles with the Joven Guardia de Cuba under the direction of Laura Alonso, and leading roles as a soloist with the Royal Ballet of Flanders in Belgium for seven years.

 

Reyes’ awards include the Gold Medal for the Best Soloist at the International Ballet Competition of Chiclayo, Peru; Best Couple Prize at the XIV International Ballet Competition Varna; Silver Medal at the Cinquième Concours International de Danse de Paris and Second Prize at the International Ballet Competition of Luxembourg. Reyes has danced internationally as a Guest Artist with companies including The National Theatre of Tokyo, Ochi International Ballet in Osaka, Hakucho Ballet Japan, Jeune Ballet de France, Ballet the Limoges in France, Balleto Del Sud in Italy, the Nafsika Dance Theater in Greece, Georgia State Ballet in Chicago, and the Bashkirian State Ballet in Russia.

PETER STARK

Boston Ballet II
Associate Director

Peter Stark is a renowned ballet teacher and coach who has been called “Ballet’s Pied Piper” by the Sarasota Herald Tribune. Stark trained at The School of American Ballet with Stanley Williams, Richard Rapp, Andre Eglevsky, and Fernando Bujones. He also went on to study Business Administration at Strayer University in Washington, DC.

 

His performing career includes The New York City Ballet, Boston Ballet, and The Washington Ballet. He danced in works by George Balanchine, Marius Petipa, Peter Martins, Twyla Tharp and in the premieres of works by Jerome Robbins, Violette Verdy, Ralph Lemmon and Bujones. He was featured in a PBS telecast of Washington Opera’s La Rondine staring Jose Carras.

 

Bujones hired Stark as the Assistant to the Artistic Director of Ballet Mississippi, and later as School Director at Orlando Ballet. Stark has taught for The Washington School of Ballet, Ballet West, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet Summer Intensive, American University, Maryland Youth Ballet, Orlando Ballet School and Next Generation Ballet. He led The Orlando Ballet School for a decade where he expanded it to four locations and founded Orlando Ballet II. He is the Founding Artistic Director of Next Generation which has grown to have an international reputation, winning many awards and accolades. The New York Times has twice praised Stark, calling his students “breathtaking” and noting that they displayed “a joyous appetite for movement.”

 

He has received many honors including the Florida Arts Educator of the Year, a feature on the cover of Dance Teacher Magazine, and was honored in Orlando, Florida with “Peter Stark Day.” Stark has judged dance competitions internationally and served on grant panels for the National Endowment for the Arts. He co-presented four annual ballet galas with Youth America Grand Prix, including “Ballet’s Greatest Hits” that was streamed to movie theaters internationally and hosted by So You Think You Can Dance judge Nigel Lythgoe.

 

Stark staged and choreographed several critically acclaimed full length ballets that have been danced by companies such as Washington Ballet, Orlando Ballet, Next Generation Ballet and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. He also choreographed Merry Widow, La Traviata, Aida, Don Giovanni among others for Opera Tampa.

 

Stark’s students are now dancing in companies including New York City Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, Dutch National Ballet, National Ballet of Canada, American Ballet Theatre, and Paul Taylor Dance Company, among others. Students of his have received full merit scholarships at dance academies such as The School of American Ballet, Stuttgart Ballet, and The Royal Ballet School of England. He has coached gold medal winners for International Ballet Competitions around the world. Students of his have won the Grand Prix at the Youth America Grand Prix New York Finals, the Princess Grace Award, Audience Favorite at the Prix de Lausanne, and Best Male Dancer at the Eric Bruhn Competition. Stark was named Outstanding Teacher at the 2014 New York Finals of Youth America Grand Prix and has four times led academies to be awarded Outstanding School.

SHARON STORY

Atlanta Ballet
Dean of Education

Dean Story is currently in her 21st season with Atlanta Ballet. She joined Atlanta Ballet after a professional dance career that spanned more than 20 years, including tenures with Joffrey Ballet, the School of American Ballet, New York City Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, and ten years with Boston Ballet.

 

In 1996, in addition to her role as ballet mistress, John McFall’s vision and mentorship brought Sharon to her current position as dean of the Centre for Dance Education, which has rapidly grown to one of the largest dance schools in the nation. The Centre for Dance Education is nationally recognized for great accomplishments in its programs and community initiatives. Under Sharon’s direction, the Centre achieved accreditation with National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD). Sharon is a member of the Board of Directors for NASD and is delighted to serve on many community and national boards.

 

Sharon received the 2015 Women Making a Mark award from Atlanta Magazine. She is committed to providing a noncompetitive atmosphere and access to dance education that is shaped by the community needs, is innovative, and inspires the commitment and excellence that are the trademarks of Atlanta Ballet. She is very proud of the dancers who have studied at the Centre for Dance Education and continue to share their experiences on stage in the Atlanta Ballet company and around the globe. She thanks her family for all their love and support during her career.

MARION TONNER

Oregon Ballet Theatre
School Director

Marion Tonner has joined the dedicated team of dance professionals who comprise faculty and staff of the esteemed Oregon Ballet Theatre School. She came from Orlando Ballet School, where she joyfully served as Principal. Tonner has called the U.S. her home since 1974, and danced professionally with the Maryland Ballet, where she later served as Ballet Master. A dance educator, Ms. Tonner was a senior faculty member of the University of the Arts, Miami City Ballet, and Boston Ballet. Marion also directed her own school for 10 years in Philadelphia.

 

A native of England, Ms. Tonner received her education and dance training in London. She graduated from the Royal Academy of Dance with a Licentiate Diploma and Advanced Teaching Degree. She is also an American Ballet Theatre© Certified Teacher of the ABT National Training Curriculum (P-5). She has extensive knowledge of major dance training systems used worldwide, and enjoys analyzing body mechanics and designing classes, to promote artistry and prevent injury.

 

Ms. Tonner has been a summer guest teacher for 23 years, for the world-renowned Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. Other guest teaching includes the American Academy of Ballet in New York, Orlando Ballet, Sarasota Ballet, Pittsburgh Youth Ballet, ISOMATA, and many others throughout the country.

MARIA TORIJA

BalletMet
Academy Director

Born in Madrid, Spain, Maria Torija began her ballet studies with Lola de Avila, Luis Fuentes and Carmen Roche. At the age of thirteen, she was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to study for three years at the School of American Ballet in New York.

 

After a short stint with the Ballet Nacional de España Clásico, in 1987 she began her 20-year career as a dancer with the Deutsche Oper Berlin ballet company, currently the Staatsballett Berlin. During her time in Berlin, Maria performed in solo and principal roles in numerous classic ballets, including works choreographed by George Balanchine.

 

She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Ballet Teaching, and graduated summa cum laude with a Master’s and PhD in Performing Arts from the Universidad Rey Juan Carlos, in Madrid. She also has an extensive teaching resume. Beginning with the Opera Ballet of Deutsche Oper Berlin, she has served as a faculty member at the Palucca Hochschule für Tanz, Dresden. Maria has participated in seminars and has been invited to teach classes throughout Europe, Japan and Hong King and the United States. While on the  faculty of the Miami City Ballet and Miami City Ballet School, Maria taught dancing as well as classes on the history of ballet and other associated topics. She organized and conceived a popular program for the Open Barre at the Miami City Ballet, inviting the public to see a demonstration of the progression of professional ballet training. Maria became the Director of the BalletMet Academy in May 2017.

EDDY TOVAR

Pennsylvania Ballet II
Director

  

Eddy Tovar trained at the National Ballet School in Havana. He began his professional career in Brazil at the Bale do Estado de Goias before joining the Orlando Ballet under the direction of Bruce Marks and the late Fernando Bujones.

 

Eddy rose through the ranks of Orlando Ballet to that of principal dancer, while also serving as the resident guest artist of the Los Angeles Ballet. He retired from the stage after dancing for Texas Ballet Theater as a principal dancer, under the direction of Ben Stevenson.

Eddy has performed principal roles in virtually every full-length classic ballet, including roles in works by George Balanchine and Twyla Tharp. As well, he has won numerous medals in competitions all around the world and appeared as a guest on the TV show “So You Think You Can Dance”. Most recently, Eddy served on the faculty of the Hartt School of Dance Department at the University of Hartford. Throughout his career, he has staged ballets as well as instructed students of all levels.

Eddy is currently the director of Pennsylvania Ballet Second Company.

YAN CHEN

Female Compulsory Coach

Yan Chen was trained at Shanghai Dance School, China and San Francisco Ballet School. In 1987, She was awarded Paris Foundation of Dance Award at the Prix de Lausanne in Switzerland. She then joined The Wash­ington Ballet under the artistic director Mary Day. In the fall of 1993, Ms. Chen joined the American Ballet The­atre, and six months later, she was promoted to soloist. 


As one of American Ballet Theatre's most lyrical and versatile dancer, she has performed many leading roles including Juliet in Romeo & Juliet, title role in Cinderella, Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, the Sylphide in La Sylphide, Swanilda in Coppelia, Gulnar in Le Corsaire, Desdemona in Othello, Giselle in Giselle, as well as works by Twyla Tharp, Jiri Kylian, Paul Taylor, Lor Lubovitch, George Balanchine, John Cranko, John Neu­meier, James Kudelka. During her performing career, Ms. Chen had performed as a guest artist throughout the world, she has been invited to perform at many prestigious dance festivals such as Vail international dance festival, Jacobs pillow dance festival. She also appeared in PBS Great Performance program for Tele­vision and Video/DVD: "American Ballet Theatre Now." 


Ms. Chen always had a passion for teaching. Since 1994, she served as the guest teacher with the Orlando Ballet School and the company (then the Southern Ballet Theater). In 2009 she became the Ballet Master with Orlando Ballet. She is currently the faculty member and adjudicator for American Ballet Theatre's Summer In­tensive program and Guest Ballet Master for the American Ballet Theatre studio company. 

Andres Estevez

Male Compulsory Coach

Andres began his training at the National Ballet of Cuba in 1989. Under the direction of world known "Prima Ballerina Absoluta", Alicia Alonso, Andres joined the Corps de Ballet in 1993 and was later promoted to Cory­phee. 


In 1997, Mr. Estevez joined the Corps de Ballet of Miami City Ballet. Under the direction of Edward Villella, he performed as principal in a variety of Balanchine ballets such as, Star and Stripes, Sinatra Songs, Allegro Bril­lante, West Side Story, Serenade, Waltz Fantasy and others. 


In 1998, he then joined and remained with the Orlando Ballet for eleven years. Andres worked closely with the international star and director, Fernando Bujones and later with world renowned director Bruce Marks. As a Principal Dancer for the company, he performed a multitude of ballet from Gisele, Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Coppelia, La Fille Mal Gardee, Romeo and Juliet, Nutcracker, Spartacus, Camelot, and numerous modern and neo-classical works. 


In 2009, Andres joined BalletMet as a Principal Dancer, and performed a variety of classical, Balanchine and contemporary ballets through his eight year tenure. He has also appeared in numerous world premieres and international galas. Upon retiring from the stage in 2017, he then transitioned to the Associate Director of Ballet Met II. His main role - teaching and coaching the second company dancers, and preparing the school and trainee dancers to transition to a professional career. 


In 2018, Andres became the Company Ballet Master, responsible in helping manage the company in sched­uling, rehearsals, and classes. The following year he became the rehearsal Director where he staged chore­ographies around the country, and assisted guest choreographers through the rehearsal process. He just re­cently became Co-Academy Director of United Ballet Theatre. 


Mr. Estevez is a strong believer in bringing growth to art organizations through the power of dance. With over twenty-five years of experience, he has helped students and professional dancers to achieve new artistic heights while enriching the community. While preserving the tradition of classical ballet, he helped art organi­zations with adaptive and creative ideas. He believes that arts provide a great benefit to society and in the development of children. 

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