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Guest Artists

Guest Artists
Who have performed with
Colorado Youth Ballet

Stella Abrera Stella Abrera of South Pasadena, California, began her studies with Philip and Charles Fuller and Cynthia Young at Le Studio in Pasadena. She also spent three years studying with Joan and Monica Halliday at the Halliday Dance Centre in Sydney, Australia. Prior to that she studied with Lorna Diamond and Patricia Hoffman at the West Coast Ballet Theatre in San Diego. Abrera joined American Ballet Theatre as a member of the corps de ballet in 1996. Her repertoire with ABT includes the Girl in Afternoon of a Faun, Calliope in Apollo, Gamzatti and a Shade in La Bayadère, Moss in Cinderella, Aurora in Coppélia, Gulnare and an Odalisque in Le Corsaire, Clair De Lune in Dancing with Monet, She Wore a Perfume in Dim Lustre, the woman in white in Diversion of Angels, Driad Queen and a Flower Girl in Don Quixote, Helena in The Dream, the first passerby in Fancy Free, Myrta and Zulma in Giselle, a principal role in Jabula, Lescaut's Mistress in Manon, the Sugar Plum Fairy and the Arabian Dance in The Nutcracker, Queen of the Carriage Trade in Offenbach in the Underworld, the Ballerina and a Gypsy in Petrouchka, the Polovtsian Princess in the Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor, Henrietta, the White Lady and the lead Spanish Dancer in Raymonda, Lady Capulet and Rosaline in Romeo and Juliet, Princess Florine and Diamond in The Sleeping Beauty, the Hungarian Princess and the pas de trios in Swan Lake, Ceres in Sylvia, His Mistress in Weren't We Fools?, leading roles in Ballet Imperial, Concerto No. 1 for Piano and Orchestra, In The Upper Room, Meadow, Petite Mort, Sinfonietta, Les Sylphides, Symphonic Variations and workwithinwork and featured roles in Black Tuesday and Gong. Abrera created the roles of His Memory and His Experiences in HereAfter and a leading role in Pretty Good Year. Abrera received the Gold Medal at the Royal Academy of Dancing's Adeline Genée Awards in London in 1995. Abrera was appointed a Soloist in August 2001.
Sascha Radetsky Sascha Radetsky was born in Santa Cruz, California, Radetsky began his ballet studies in the San Francisco Bay Area with Damara Bennett and Ayako Takahashi. At the age of 15, he was invited to study in Moscow at the Bolshoi Academy under world-renowned men's teacher Pytor Pestov. After a year in Russia, he studied on scholarship at the Kirov Academy in Washington, D. C. under Rudolph Kharatian and Andrei Garbouz. He toured with the Kirov Ballet throughout the United States and internationally. He also studied on scholarship at the summer programs of the School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theatre's School of Classical Ballet with Mikhail Baryshnikov, the San Francisco Ballet School and the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Vail, Colorado. Radetsky joined American Ballet Theatre as an apprentice in 1995, became a member of the corps de ballet in 1996 and a soloist in 2003. His repertoire includes Lankendem and Birbanto in Le Corsaire, Benno and von Rothbart in Swan Lake, Act III, Espada and the lead gypsy in Don Quixote, the Head Fakir in La Bayadère, Bluebird in The Sleeping Beauty, Hilarion and the peasant pas de deux in Giselle, Orion in Sylvia, Cavalier and the Nutcracker-Prince in The Nutcracker, Petrouchka in Petrouchka, Bernard in Raymonda, Tybalt and Benvolio in Romeo and Juliet, the Head Fakir in La Bayadère, Hortensio in The Taming of the Shrew, the second sailor in Fancy Free, the Champion Roper in Rodeo, the Warrior Chieftain in Polovtsian Dances from Prince Igor, the third movement in Bruch Violin Concerto No. 1, the fourth movement in Symphony in C, the pas de deux in Jabula, the "Guitar" pas de deux from Within You Without You: A Tribute to George Harrison, and many others. He has danced the works of acclaimed choreographers such as Balanchine, Morris, Taylor, Lubovitch, MacMillan, Tharp, Tudor, Cranko, de Mille, Elo, Robbins, Reinking, Wheeldon and Kylian. He is an original member of the troupe "Stiefel and Stars" and has been a frequent guest performer and teacher with ballet companies across the United States and abroad. In 2000, Radetsky starred as Charlie in the movie Center Stage as well as in pop singer Mandy Moore's music video "I Wanna Be With You" from the Center Stage soundtrack. He has appeared in numerous television and print commercials as well as starring roles in the PBS movie Home at Last and in the NBC television series Midnight Caller.
Scott Marble Scott Marble, originally from New Hampshire, started his classical training at the University of New Hampshire and the Boston School of Ballet. During his performing career, he was a member of Indianapolis Ballet Theatre in Indianapolis, Indiana; Ballet West in Salt Lake City, Utah; and Nevada Ballet Theatre in Las Vegas, New Mexico. Mr. Marble also appeared as a guest artist with the Seacoast Ballet in New Hampshire and the Alberta Ballet School in Edmonton, Canada. He has performed principal and soloist roles in Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, The Nutcracker, Cinderella as well as numerous contemporary and original works.
Peter Strand Peter Strand is retired from a 20 year career in dance and is happy to be back in his home town, Colorado Springs, dancing purely for the love of it. He has worked with such companies as Oakland Ballet, Minnesota Ballet, Lexington and Connecticut Ballet. Internationally, he has worked on the MS Vistafjord as featured dancer, Crystal Cruises, and The Scotia Prince. Modern companies he has worked for include Micheal Mao Dance Company, Muna Tseng, Kim Robbards, and David Taylor. He has also choreographed in Rock Island, Illinois; Nashua, New Hampshire; Venice, Italy; St. George, Utah; NY, New York; and Lexington, Kentucky.
Lawrence Jackson Lawrence Jackson, a native of Jackson, MS., and graduate of the University of Southern Mississippi, holds a M.F.A. in Dance. Mr. Jackson has taught at the Madison County Cultural Arts Center, Mary Bethune Performing Arts School, and the University of Southern Mississippi. Mr. Jackson danced four seasons with Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble and is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts degree with Florida State University. Besides performing with Colorado Youth Ballet, Mr. Jackson also offers Contemporary Dance Master Classes at Ballet Society of Colorado Springs studios for Intermediate and Advance level dancers that are well attended and enjoyed by dance students in the area.
David Sckolnik David Sckolnik, since 1995, Mr. Sckolnik has taken an active role in the Pikes Peak Region's performing and visual arts scene and brings a lifetime of love for the arts to his efforts. He has been a writer and critic for the Colorado Springs Independent and Springs Magazine and in January 1997, started ArtsPeak for Southern Colorado. Through his own company, à la carte productions, Sckolnik works with numerous performing arts organizations as a consultant, program developer, publicist and representative. For two seasons he was the Director of Marketing for the Colorado Springs Philharmonic. As a performer, David has spent long hours on the stage in drama, comedy, musical theatre and opera. A classically trained baritone and actor, Sckolnik has performed with the Fine Arts Center's Repertory Theater Company. He also founded the very popular Thursday Night Recital Series at the Colorado Springs School. Currently he works as a marketing consultant for Ballet Society and Opera Theatre of the Rockies
Jacob Mora Jacob Mora is artistic director of Moraporvida Contemporary Dance, a company of unique and talented individuals based on urban experiences and human emotions. As well as director of Porvida, Jacob teaches and choreographs using a unique blend of traditional and contemporary techniques that fuse modern, jazz, hip hop, poetry and ethnic movements. Teaching around the country Jacob is currently on staff At the University of Wyoming as well as the New York Institute of Dance. As a solo dancer, Jacob has had the pleasure of working with many choreographers and companies including The Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble, David Taylor Dance Theatre, Toronto based Mohawk choreographer Santee Smith Group, Kaleidoscope Dance Theatre, Alaska Dance Theatre and Hannah Khan Dance Co. As an ADF Scholarship Recipient, Jacob worked with Betty Jones, Nathan Trice, Lisa Race and performed the critically acclaimed piece "Subverse" with the David Dorfman Dance Co. Jacob has also had the pleasure of working with Master Choreographers such as Donald Mckayle, Milton Meyers, Betty Jones, Bill T Jones, Ron K Brown and Eleo Pomare among many. As well as an accomplished stage performer, Jacob works as an actor and producer of video and film.
Lincoln Thomas Lincoln Thomas is a software engineer and team lead for Hewlett-Packard Company. In the arts community, he is more often heard than seen. He moonlights as a substitute on-air host for KCME-FM, 88.7's classical music programming. He has provided voices for KCME Radio Theatre productions, and performs in the classical guitar quartet Colorado Springs Guitar Ensemble. He is as surprised as you that he is playing Tchaikovsky, having neither formal acting training nor significant experience beyond high school drama classes. Script author David Sckolnik remembered him from their KCME days together and offered him the role. Lincoln overcame his shyness and self-doubt (as Tchaikovsky did) and is now thoroughly enjoying bringing the master to life and watching the amazing Youth Ballet from his better-than-front-row seat during these performances.
Franklin Bennett Erik Bryan (Drosselmeyer) is well known to Southern Colorado audiences for his frequent leading role performances for Opera Theatre of the Rockies. This past February, he portrayed Papageno in Mozart's The Magic Flute. A baritone, Erik is equally at home on the musical theatre stage as was named "Best Actor in a Musical Role" by the Denver Post in their 2009 Ovation Awards for his performance as the Phantom in Candlelight Dinner Playhouse's Phantom. Erik is also the co-creator of the National Renaissance Festival act Charming & Dashing in which he plays the role of Sir Charles Dashing. Erik was born in C/S to magicians John and Michèle Bryan. His first steps on the stage were at the age of four when he joined his parents in their magic act. He continues in the family tradition: Erik is a master of illusion and sleight of hand.
Franklin Bennett Franklin Leo Bennett has worked with a variety of performing arts organizations in Colorado Springs. In Alleycat Theatrics, he made his acting debut as Ryan Evans in High School Musical. Bennett was cast in Aiming for the Stars, part of the Fine Arts Center Youth Rep program and other theatrical roles include: Luther Billis in South Pacific and Frederick in The Pirates of Penzance, both part of the Grammy award-winning Mesa Ridge High School Performing Arts Department. Bennett is a nine-season member and dance captain of the Colorado Springs Children's Chorale, which recently performed in Eric Whitacre's New York premiere of Paradise Lost: Shadows and Wings at Carnegie Hall.
Christopher Selbie Christopher Selbie, started his dance training at the Nevada Union High School in Grass Valley, California under Yelena Holt. He continued on to the University of Arizona's School of Dance under renowned faculty, and received his BFA in Dance in 2010. Christopher has also attended the Burklyn Ballet Theatre summer intensive. During his training he has performed roles such as Sugarplum Cavalier and Snow King in The Nutcracker, the Phlegmatic man in George Balanchine's The Four Temperaments among other classical and contemporary roles. Christopher just finished his first season with David Taylor Dance Theatre.
Hanna Atencio Hanna Atencio, began her ballet training in her hometown Nuremberg, Germany. Her final training years were in Berlin at the State Ballet School. During her last year of school she was invited to dance with Ballet Dortmund as a guest artist in Swan Lake. Upon graduation she received a contract at the Landesbuehnen Saxonia. In 2006, Hanna moved to Jackson, MS, to be a trainee with Ballet Magnificat!. She was promoted to dance with the Ballet Magnificat! Omega company where she performed and taught throughout the United States as well as internationally in Canada, Israel, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Germany, Kosovo, Macedonia, France and Italy.
Matthew Helms Matthew Helms, currently dances as a principal with Boulder Ballet under the direction of Ana Claire and Peter Davison. Matthew began his training in Colorado on full scholarship at the Academy of Classical Ballet, where he danced principal roles in The Nutcracker, Giselle and Le Corsaire. Matthew competed in the 2008 Youth America Grand Prix and the 2008 Denver Ballet Guild Competition where he received a full scholarship to The Ballet West Academy in Salt Lake City, Utah. Matthew has been a guest artist with ballet companies in Utah, California and Idaho, and for the last three years has performed leading roles in several ballet classics. He choreographed a contemporary ballet that was premiered in the Ballet West Academy Spring show in 2009. Matthew was promoted to the Ballet West Pre-Professional Trainee Program in 2010. Matthew has studied martial arts since age three, has been acting since age four, and has appeared in movies, commercials and TV shows as an actor and a fight choreographer.
Stephen Wynne Stephen Wynne, (Drosselmeyer) is Artistic Director of Sangre de Cristo Ballet and School of Dance in Pueblo. A former dancer with Joffrey Ballet, Mr. Wynne spent 16 years overseas employed as a dancer in Europe at Scapino Ballet in Amsterdam, CH Tanz Theater in Zurich, Switzerland and Tanz-Forum, the resident modern dance company at the Metropolitan Opera House in Cologne, Germany. Later in his career Mr. Wynne began to choreograph and subsequently was awarded for his choreographic achievement from the German Cultural Department in October of 1993.
Caitlin Hoffman Caitlin Hoffman, began her dance studies at Ballet Society of Colorado Springs, and completed her training at Canada's National Ballet School. Upon graduating from NBS, Caitlin danced professionally with Tulsa Ballet. While at Tulsa Ballet and NBS, Caitlin performed in many ballets including Swan Lake, La Sylphide, The Nutcracker, Balanchine's Serenade, as well as many contemporary works. Caitlin currently owns her own business, Ballerina Boutique, and is a faculty member of Ballet Society. Caitlin enjoys offering her firsthand experience in the ballet world to her students and customers.
April M. Longo April M. Longo is originally from Johnson City, TN and is new to the Colorado Springs area. She most recently danced professionally with The Florida Ballet, performing principal roles such as Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker, Tatiana in Florida Ballet's Urban Dream and soloist roles in Paquita, Fairest of Them All, and other Florida Ballet exclusives. She has also danced professionally with Tulsa Ballet, under direction of Marcello Angelini, performing Balanchine's Serenade, as well as Swan Lake, Pas de Quatre, Les Sylphides, and contemporary choreography by Tulsa Ballet's Ma Cong. Prior to that, she danced with Kentucky Ballet Theatre, directed by Norbe Risco and earned her dual undergraduate degree on scholarship from Radford University in Virginia, with a B.F.A in Dance and a B.B.A in Business Management, graduating Summa Cum Laude in both.
Stacy Smith Stacy Smith was trained in New York. Her professional performing career included the Baltimore Ballet, Ballet Nuevo Mundo de Caracas, Ballet Internacional de Caracas, Ballet Florida, and the David Taylor Dance Theatre. Stacy has taught and directed community outreach programs throughout her career. Upon retiring from performing professionally, she founded and directed Cresson Dance, a nonprofit educational and performing dance program based in Cripple Creek, CO. She choreographs for Thin Air Theatre Company and is a certified yoga instructor, offering classes in Cripple Creek, Woodland Park, and Colorado Springs.
Misha Izotov Misha Izotov, Artistic Director of Premiere Ballet, is a ballet danseur trained in Ukraine. After graduating from the Ukraine Dance Academy in Kiev, he was invited to join the National Ballet and Opera Theatre in Donetsk, Ukraine, where he became a principal soloist. He immigrated to the United States in 2003 and began his American career with Colorado Ballet. He performed with Metropolitan Classical Ballet for three seasons while developing his reputation as a guest artist and teacher. As a freelance artist, he has performed with ballet companies across the United States including Ballet Concerto, Ballet Ensemble of Texas, Ballet Montana, and Peoria Ballet. He moved to Pueblo to direct the Sangre de Cristo Ballet. He is proud to now call Southern Colorado home and enjoys performing with his wife, Melian Izotova.
Melian Izotova Melian Izotova trained with Fernando and Karen Schaffenburg and owes significant influence and thanks to Sallyann Mulcahy and Lauri Worrill-Biggs. She began her professional career with Metropolitan Classical Ballet, performing in both classic Russian ballets such as The Nutcracker and Spartacus, and Balanchine works including Agon, The Four Temperaments, and Concerto Barocco. She is a featured guest artist around the United States, dancing often with Ballet Concerto, Ballet San Antonio, and Allen Civic Ballet. In addition to freelance performing, Melian has been an instructor and ballet mistress at New World Ballet and Allen Civic Ballet. She is currently the ballerina of Premiere Ballet under the artistic leadership of her husband and favorite dancing partner.
  Tessa Victoria has performed with the City Ballet of Houston, Houston Ballet and Ballet West. She has attended summer programs at Boston Ballet, Pacific Northwest, Pennsylvania Ballet and Houston Ballet. Tessa dances with Robert Sher-Machherndl's Lemon Sponge Cake Contemporary Ballet in Boulder, CO.

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