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  • Metropolitan Ballet

Study with 6 Principal Dancers This Summer!

Metropolitan Ballet is so excited to have SIX PRINCIPAL DANCERS teach at our 2024 Summer Intensive Program! The program runs from July 8th-July 26th. Please visit our Summer Intensive page to learn more and to register!

Sarah-Gabrielle Ryan, Principal with Pacific Northwest Ballet is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She studied on scholarship at Metropolitan Ballet Academy, Rock School for Dance Education, and the School of Pennsylvania Ballet; she attended summer courses at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy, Ellison Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, the School of American Ballet, the School of Pennsylvania Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Sarah-Gabrielle joined Pennsylvania Ballet II in 2014 and joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2016 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2017, soloist in 2021, and principal in 2023.

Sarah-Gabrielle has performed as a guest artist at Shut Up & Dance in collaboration with MANNA, Chop Shop Contemporary Dance Festival, and the Seattle International Dance Festival. In 2021, she performed for Matthew Neenan’s residency at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, South Dakota Ballet, and Ballet Sun Valley. She was named as one of Dance Magazine’s On the Rise in 2018 and was on the March 2021 cover of Pointe Magazine.

Rafael Quenedit, Principal with Cincinnatti Ballet began his training in Cuba at Escuela Elemental de Ballet Alejo Carpentier. He then spent eight years training with the National Ballet School of Cuba. He graduated in 2014 and joined the National Ballet of Cuba as a corps de ballet dancer. Quenedit Castro was quickly cast in soloist and principal roles, before being named principal dancer at the prestigious international company. From there, he joined Cincinnati Ballet where he is currently a principal dancer.

He has worked with internationally-renowned choreographers including Alicia Alonso, Alexei Ratmansky, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Giuliano Peparini, Alberto Mendez, among others. Sharing his art with dance lovers around the world has been one of his passions. He has performed lead roles in the United States, Italy, Spain, France, Canada, Mexico and several others. Competitions awards include: Bronze medal at the International Ballet competition in Havana, Cuba; Junior division. Gold medal at the International Ballet competition in Cape Town, South Africa; Junior division. Gold medal at the XX International Ballet competition in Havana, Cuba. Also awarded best Artistic Performance; Senior division. Winner at Amici World Dance competition in Italy.

Mayara Pineiro, Principal with Philadelphia Ballet graduated from the prestigious Cuban National Ballet School under the direction of Ramona de Sáa. She has participated in international dance festivals across the globe, including South Africa, Peru, and Canada. At age 16, Mayara won a silver medal in the International Ballet Competition held in Havana, Cuba. That same year, she received a gold medal in the Danza & Mare Competition in Calabria, Italy and a second gold medal in 2011 at the Youth American Grand Prix in Tampa, Florida. She was featured in Dance Magazine in 2015 and graced the cover of Pointe Magazine in 2016. Mayara’s courageous journey from Cuba to the U.S. was featured in the 2014 documentary Secundaria by filmmaker Mary Jane Doherty. She was a dance model in Gap’s Fit Fall 2016 Campaign.

Mayara began her professional career as a soloist with the National Opera of Bucharest, where she danced a variety of featured roles. In 2012, she was invited to be a guest artist with Balletto del Sud in Italy under the direction of Fredy Franzutti and toured throughout Italy. In 2012 to 2014 she danced with the Milwaukee Ballet. Mayara joined Philadelphia Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in our 2014/2015 Season. She was promoted to soloist in 2015 and quickly became a principal dancer in 2016.

Melissa Gelfin De-Poli, Principal with Cincinnatti Ballet began her ballet training with Lisa Collins Vidnovic at Metropolitan Ballet Academy and continued with Barbara Sandonato and Andrea Long-Naidu at Barbara Sandonato School of Ballet. She joined the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre in 2009, under the direction of Franco De Vita and Raymond Lukens, and was awarded a National Training Scholarship with ABT.

Prior to dancing with Cincinnati Ballet, Gelfin De-Poli danced for Orlando Ballet II and Orlando Ballet Company from 2011-2014 and was a finalist in the 2014 Jackson International Ballet Competition. Gelfin De-Poli joined Cincinnati Ballet as a New Dancer for the 2014-2015 Season and was promoted to Corps De Ballet in February of 2015. She was promoted to Senior Soloist in 2017 and Principal Dancer in 2018. As a dancer with Cincinnati Ballet, Gelfin De-Poli’s repertoire includes classical and contemporary works by William Forsythe, Septime Webre, Yuri Possikov, Victoria Morgan, Val Caniparoli, Jerome Robbins, George Balanchine, Nicolo Fonte, Jodie Gates, Jiri Kylian, AnnaMarie Holmes, Dwight Rhoden, Tiler Peck, David Morse, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Adam Hougland, and Ma Cong.

Kyle Davis, Principal with Pacific Northwest Ballet received his initial dance training at the Makaroff School of Ballet in Wisconsin and attended the Rock School for Dance Education and the North Carolina School of the Arts on scholarship. He also attended summer courses on scholarship at the Milwaukee Ballet, School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. In addition to being a prize winner at the 2008 Prix de Lausanne competition in Switzerland, Davis had won various awards in the Youth American Grand Prix Regional and Finals.

He joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2008 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2009, soloist in 2016, and principal in 2020. He has performed principal and featured roles in works by George Balanchine, Donald Byrd, Alejandro Cerrudo, David Dawson, William Forsythe, Jiri Kylian, Jessica Lang, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Justin Peck, Crystal Pite, Alexei Ratmansky, Jerome Robbins, and Twyla Tharp – among others. Davis also performs as a guest artist with various companies, schools, festivals, and independent projects.

Oksana Maslova, Principal with Philadelphia Ballet artistic development began early on with rhythmic gymnastics, which eventually led her to an intensive ballet program with Irina Sycheva, former ballerina of St. Petersburg Ballet. Oksana then went on to the Kiev Choreographic College and began performing with Kiev Youth Ballet, where she danced the part of Arabian in The Nutcracker, Kitri in Don Quixote, and Odette in Swan Lake. After graduating from Kiev, Oksana became a student at the Institute of Culture and Arts, where she received her master’s degree as a choreographer and ballet master.

Oksana joined Philadelphia Ballet as a soloist for their 2014/2015 Season and in 2016, Oksana was promoted to principal dancer. Prior to Philadelphia Ballet, Oksana was a member of Suziriya Dance Theater, which she joined after Kiev Youth Ballet. In 2004, she became a member of the Odessa National Opera House, where she rose to the rank of soloist and performed a variety of principal roles. In 2008, she joined Grand Rapids Ballet as a principal dancer, performing their entire classical repertoire. And, in June 2011, she joined the Connecticut Ballet Company as a principal dancer, where she created the role of Alice in Brett Raphael’s Alice in Wonderland.

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