FEATURED SOLOISTS:Nika Antuanette, Davonna Batt, Vanessa Calderon, Meagan Cubides, Laurie Déziel, DaJuan Harris, Alexandria Johnson, Alexis Julian, Nuria Martin Fandos, and Roberto Villanueva.
NIKA ANTUANETTErecently returned from a five-month Dance Journey in Israel with Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company. A Chicago native, Nika graduated from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities with a double major in Dance & Psychology. Nika performs regularly with SARAH BERGES DANCE, enjoying a bi-coastal dance experience from New York City to Los Angeles and back. Nika has also danced with Anne-Marie Mulgrew & Dancers Company, ColliDe Theatrical Dance Company, Creative Development International, and Skylark Opera. She has performed work by Rami Be’er, Paul Taylor, Mats Ek, Larry Keigwin, Carl Flink, Penelope Freeh, Arnie Zane, Olga Stesyuk, Shapiro & Smith, Christine Maginnis, and Angharad Davies.
DAVONNA BATT, a native New Mexican, studied ballet, modern, jazz, contemporary, hip hop, tap and musical theater. She holds a B.F.A. in Dance and a minor in Business Management from the University of Arizona. In those years, she studied under artists including Melissa Lowe, Amy Ernst, Sam Watson, Tammy Dyke-Compton, Robert Moses, Loren Fletcher, and others. Since moving to New York, she has had the pleasure of working with artists such as Jessica Taylor (DAMAGEDANCE), Hollye Bynum (of bones dance), Amanda Hameline (Amanda Hameline Dance), Marc Andrew Nunez (Gotham Dance Theater), Zanza Steinberg (ALMA NYC), and Sarah Berges (Sarah Berges Dance).
VANESSA CALDERONis a twice award-winning actress, Jazz, Hip-hop and Contemporary choreographer and creator of the DeMotion Act technique. Besides her recent collaboration with Deborah Geffner (All That Jazz, A Chorus Line…), Vanessa worked with X-Plain as their face and image for their new clothing collection and recently finished shooting Taking East New York, a TV pilot produced by Ice-T. Among her recent works, she choreographed a music video for Million Hoodies Movement directed by Daniel Maree and music by Jay Z. Before moving to New York in 2013, Vanessa was already one of the most multidisciplinary artists of the Spanish scene. Her career started out when she starred in Defectos (Directed by Pedro del Oso) from which she received the Best Leading Actress Award at La Fila Film Festival. Vanessa walked the red carpet in 2013 at Malaga Film Festival for the premiere of her feature film, La Reina de Tapas. Her non-stop goal of taking her career one step forward lead her to co-write INSANIA along with Spanish director Daniel Diosdado. Her work won her the Best Actress Award at KO&Digital Film Festival. She stepped into the international scene as a scriptwriter for short films 3'30" DK and Con Cara de Gilipollas. These films have received nominations and awards in Spain, Argentina, Chile, Brazil, and Germany. Vanessa has worked for independent filmmakers such as Miguel Angel Rolland (Goya Awards nominee for Aerosol), and successful TV series like Hospital Central. She has also performed with the prestigious company La Fura Dels Baus at Teatro Real of Madrid and Bolshoi Theatre of Moscow.
MEAGAN CUBIDES, born and raised in Miami, Florida, began her professional training at the Miami City Ballet School. Her interest in modern and contemporary dance led her to the high school at New World School of the Arts, where she graduated with honors in 2015. She studied at summer intensive programs at Ballet Austin, The Juilliard School, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, and Bodytraffic Dance Company. Meagan has performed works by Sidra Bell, Uri Sands, and Francesca Harper among others. LAURIE DÉZIEL, born and raised in a small town of Shawinigan, Quebec, Canada, trained at L’École de danse contemporaine de Montréal, The School of Toronto Dance Theatre. She is a scholarship graduate in the 2-year Professional Training Program at The Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance. She has performed works by American choreographers such as Martha Graham, José Limón, Jennifer Conley, Filip Condeescu and Canadian choreographers Christopher House, Sharon B. Moore, Darryl Tracy and Julia Sasso.
DAJUAN HARRIS,a native of Paterson, New Jersey, began his formal dance training with Cynthia Jones at the Academy of Performing Arts. He attended Rosa L. Parks School of Fine and Performing Arts training under the direction of Erin Pride. During DaJuan's training, he received full scholarships to train at Perry Mansfield Winter Intensive at The Julliard School, Ballet Forte at Wings Conservatory, New Jersey Dance Theater Ensemble, Mason Gross School of the Arts, and The Joffrey Ballet School Jazz and Contemporary Program. DaJuan is currently on faculty at Art in Motion Inc. and an assistant teacher at Peridance Capezio Center. He has performed works by Robert Battle, Nathan Trice, Ryan Daniel Beck, Fredrick Earl Mosley, Guillermo Blinker, Nathan Makolandra, Brian Reeder, Kevin Wynn, Dionna PridGeon, Randy James, and Doug Elkins. He has also performed at the world famous Apollo Theater, The Peter Norton Symphony Space, and The Ailey Citigroup Theater. DaJuan has worked with MarDelDance, Marked Dance Project, The Vanessa Long Dance Company, and MoveDIPR. DaJuan currently dances for The Professionals Dance Company, a commercial company, founded and directed by Jona Biddle, which performs around the tri-state area.
ALEXANDRIA JOHNSONis a Brooklyn based multidisciplinary artist from Dallas, TX. She is a Fordham University Founders’ scholar and graduate of the Ailey/Fordham BFA Program in Dance, with a minor in Mathematics. Alexandria is greatly inspired by the movement and culture of the Diaspora, and has always felt West African Dance and Drum is her first love. In 2014, she appeared on PBS’ Sesame Street Murray Has A Little Lamb segment for West African dance. She has toured Canada as a guest artist with Les Amazones de Guinea, and was invited to perform by Stephen Rwangyezi in Kampala, Uganda as a member of Dallas Black Dance Academy’s Performing Ensemble, BLOOM. Alexandria has worked with choreographers Hope Boykin, Ronald K. Brown, Hope Clarke, Francesca Harper, Frederick Earl Mosley, Darrell Moultrie, Matthew Rushing, and performed works by Christopher Huggins and Alvin Ailey. As a member of JUNTOS Collective, she taught workshops in Spanish and performed in rural areas of Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Alexandria has also taught for The Ailey School and Dallas Black Dance Academy, and is currently a Teaching Artist for the Dance Theatre of Harlem and an assistant to choreographer Matthew Rushing
ALEXIS "LEXI" JULIAN, a dancer and choreographer from Central New York, studied under Tricia Famalaro-Zegarelli and Juliana Muirhead at the Dance Works Studio in Utica, NY. She has performed at C.O.R.E. dance project in Auburn, NY, dance competitions, a production of Cats, the Moscow Ballet’s The Nutcracker, and the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Lexi went on to study at the University at Buffalo, where she earned a BFA in Dance performance, and minors in Health and Wellness, and in Nutrition. She was a member of and choreographer for UB’s Zodiaque Dance Ensemble and a member of the Zodiaque Dance Company. She has choreographed for and performed in the UB Department of Media Studies “Digital Poetry” projects, as well as teaching and choreographing for “Bridging Communities Through Dance,” a program that brings the art of dance to students in the local public school districts as an extracurricular activity. She toured with Sesame Street Live: “Let’s Dance.”
NURIA MARTIN FANDOSearned a degree in Contemporary Dance when she graduated from Institut del Teatre/Conservatory in her native Barcelona. In May 2013 she won the 1st prize of III Certamen Internacional Ciutat de Barcelona that gave her the opportunity to finish her dance training in New York. After two years, she graduated from Certificate Program’s Peridance Capezio Center on a full scholarship. She performed works by international choreographers such as Charlotta Övferholm, Lali Ayguade, Cindy Salgado, and Elisabeth Motley, with whom she collaborated in 2015 to create the solo work "Day, night and everything." She is a member of Michiyaya Dance Company, and also works with Estado Flotante/Alvaro Gonzalez, DeFunesDance and Suku Dance Lab.
ROBERTO VILLANUEVA, born in the Philippines, is the Executive & Artistic Director and Founder of BalaSole Dance Company. He trained at the Ailey School, SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, and University at Buffalo where he received his BA in Dance Performance. Additionally, he currently serves as an Arts and Education Outreach Administrator for the world-renowned Dance Theatre of Harlem, and as an Adjunct Instructor at the College of Mount Saint Vincent. Acclaimed nationally and internationally for his technical abilities as a dance artist, Roberto has been hailed "for the deftness and technical control of his dancing" (The New York Times). He has been described as "a poetic dancer" (New York Magazine), "powerhouse dancer" (New York Daily News), "breathtaking" (Swiss Newspaper La Liberté), "an extraordinarily gifted dancer" (Attitude Magazine), "a small powerhouse" (The Village Voice), "a mentor with a mission" (Back Stage New York), and "an experienced performer" (TheaterScene.net). Roberto has performed, conducted dance residencies, judged dance competitions, and taught master classes in U.S., Europe, and Asia. He has worked with renowned choreographers such as Dwight Rhoden, Kevin Wynn, Milton Myers, and Eleo Pomare. He has performed with dance companies such as Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Alpha Omega Theatrical Dance Company, Steeledance, Marie-Christine Giordano Dance, Pick of the Crop Dance, and Buffalo City Ballet. Roberto has been commissioned to teach/choreograph for various institutions including the Alpha Omega Theatrical Dance Company, University at Buffalo, East Carolina University, Glendale Community College, University of the Philippines and Ballet Philippines. (For Roberto's full biography, visit BalaSole's "STAFF" page.)
SUMMER 2015 FEATURED EMERGING/RE-EMERGING ARTISTS
EMERGING/RE-EMERGING ARTISTS:Aliyah Caldwell, Shawn Lawrence
ALIYAH Caldwellbegan her training at the Ava Fields Dance Ministry in Baltimore, MD. She was then introduced to ballet at the TWIGS Program at the Baltimore School for the Arts. She graduated from the Baltimore School for the Arts in 2012. Aliyah has studied with Norma Pera, Anton Wilson, Arthur Mitchell, Linda-Denise Fisher-Harrell, Vincent Thomas, Alonzo King, Earl Mosley, Christian Von Howard, Runqaio Du, Catherine Horta-Hayden, Alia Kache-Blackwell, Stephen Mills, and Felicia Cruz. She has attended summer intensives such as Dance Theatre of Harlem, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Ballet Austin, and Earl Mosley Institute of the Arts. She is a recent graduate of Towson University earning her BFA in Dance Performance and Choreography minoring in Business Administration. Her accomplishments include being a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, a member of the National Honor Society of Dance Arts, and a member of Sigma Rho Delta Dance Fraternity.
SHAWN LAWRENCErecently moved to New York from Ohio to pursue his dream of being a performing artist. He received training in ballet, jazz, modern, and contemporary dance at Shaker Heights High School under the instructions of Pamela Corbin and Sabrina Gregory. He also studied hip-hop with Sharmayne Freeman. Shawn attended Cleveland State University (CSU) and was a member of the CSU Dance Company. At CSU, he received further dance under Lynn Deering, Christine DeCello, Amy Compton, and Lisa DeCato.
Harriet Ado*, Emily Aiken, Amanda Allyne, Lauren Alpert, Katherine Alvarado, Musashi Alvarez, Laura Assante, Nadine Azoulay, Hailey Bates*, Tovah-Marie Bembridge*, Loganne Bond, Paulina Bracone, Sara Braun, Caroline Brethenoux, Jonathan Breton, Steven E. Brown, Will Brown, Briana Butler, Nicole Calabrese*, Chloe Cappo, Ashley Carter, Caitlyn Casson, Angelica Cassimiro, Jessica Cipriano, Janina Clark, Lea Clay*, Anastasia Coates, Durell Comedy, Trashina Conner, Courtney Cook, Emily Craver, Bridget Cronin, Anna Cuffari*, Misei Daimaru, Ann Dale, Teal Darkenwald, Fredrick Davis**, Kianí del Valle, Rockshana Desances, Anthony Diep*, Jasmine Domfort, Kara Edwards, Jenny Efremova, Sarah Ewing, Odman Felix, Stephanie Flackman, Liz Fleche, Marie-Christine Giordano, Gierre Godley, Ezra Goh*, Alvaro Gonzalez, Shannon Grant, Aaron Gregory, Seth Grier, Rebecca Gual, Julia Halpin, Carly Harper, Kyla Healey*, Marion Helfenstein, Martha Hernandez, Laurel Higa*, Christa Hines, Monica Hogan, Erica Holloway, Hunter Frederick Houde, Jason Garcia Ignacio, Yuki Ishiguro, Sunday Jackson, Alexandra Jacob, Marie Janicek, Emily Jeffries, Kudzaishe Jeti, Steven Jeudy, Nami Kaigaishi**, Elliott Keller, Kate Kenyon, Allison Kimmel, Melanie Kimmel*, Alan Khoutakoun, Katie Kilbourn, Alison Krauss, Nikole LaChioma, Roberto Lara, Elijah Laurant, Ren Xin Lee, Vira Lee*, Courtney Liu, Devon Lodge, Joey Lorraine, Geneva Manley, Brigitte Madera, Jacqueline Maitner*, Vanessa Martínez de Baños, Anna Massey, Brittany McNair, Raven McRae, Kali McSweeney, Morgana Mellett, Betheny Merola, Peter Mills, Gina Montalto*, Maxine Montilus, Cailin Murtha, Laura Neese*, Andrew Nemr, Lauren Nettles, Daisuke Omiya, Emily Pacilio, Matt Pardo, Delphina Parentiv, Leslie Parker, Sandra Passirani, Gabriella Perez*, Ashley Peters*, Francesco Pireddu, Juan Michael Porter II, Lauren Putty, Christen Quattlebaum, Nicole Restani, Ricardo Mateo Rique-Sanchez, Carolina Rivera, Nicole Roberts*, Jennifer Roit, Sarah Roncone, Allyson Ross, Kendra Ross, Michael Ryan, Cesar Salinas, Andrea Samonilova, Alexzandra Sarmiento, Camille Schmoeker, Richard Scandola, Danielle Sheather, Erin Shimberg, Saeed Siamak, Ellen Sickenberger, Michelle Siegel, Yvanhova Silva, Tracy Singer, Jessica Smith, Maya Smith, Sasha Smith*, Jesse Springer, Megan Starnes, Angelica Stiskin, Hayley Swinburne, Ellena Takos, Anne-Marie Talmadge, Ashley Taylor, Karina Teran, Zoe Thomas*, William Tomaskovic, Milagros Torchetti, Xavier Townsend, Ursula Verduzco, Roberto Villanueva, Oshini Wanigasekera, Malik Warlick, Charly Wenzel, Leslie Williams, Katie Winder, Daphne Yang, Richard Yé, Mark Brett Young, Nathan Young, Samsam Yung, Tiffany Zondorak*
*Participated in BalaSole Dance Company's Emerging & Re-Emerging Artist Program
** Guest Soloists
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