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The Festival welcomes back Colorado Ballet in a free family-friendly show on the extraordinary stage of the Avon Performance Pavilion at Nottingham Park. Colorado Ballet is known for its depth of repertory and versatility in artistry.
Come early and enjoy Nottingham Park before the show, gates open at 4:30pm! Blankets, lawn chairs, picnics and commercially-sealed non-alcoholic beverages are permitted. Food and drink will also be available for purchase. Smoking is not permitted in the Town of Avon and please leave your pets at home.
Meet the Performers
Gil Boggs began his dance career with the Atlanta Ballet. He joined American Ballet Theatre in 1982, was promoted to soloist dancer in 1984 and principal dancer in 1991. Boggs was a member of the company for 17 years. He also performed with the Twyla Tharp Dance Company, Baryshnikov and Company, Nureyev and Friends, and made several guest appearances around the world. In 2006, Boggs accepted the position of Artistic Director with Colorado Ballet. During his tenure with Colorado Ballet, he has restaged and added numerous full-length productions, and has presented 15 world premieres and 15 Company premieres.
Dana Benton was born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, where she began her training at The Dance Centre. At the age of nine, she was accepted to the National Ballet School in Toronto where she trained for eight years. Dana graduated with Honors in Academics and was awarded the Peter Dwyer Award for Excellence in Dance. Upon graduating in 2000, Dana spent one year with Alberta Ballet Company in Canada as an apprentice. In 2001, she joined Colorado Ballet’s Corps de Ballet, was promoted to Soloist in 2007 and was promoted to Principal in 2014.
Chandra Kuykendall is from Parker, Colorado and trained at the Academy of Colorado Ballet from 1988-1997. In 1996, she won the Denver Ballet Guild Competition and received the Florence Rustin Award. She also attended summer programs at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Vail (under full scholarship), Kirov Academy of Ballet, San Francisco Ballet Academy and School of American Ballet. In 1997, Ms. Kuykendall joined Colorado Ballet. She spent the 1998-1999 season with Leipzig Ballet in Leipzig, Germany and returned to Colorado Ballet in 1999. This is her 20th season with Colorado Ballet.
Domenico Luciano was born in Naples, Italy and graduated from Royal Teatro di San Carlo Ballet School in Naples in 1999. In the same year, Mr. Luciano joined the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Dusseldorf, Germany. After dancing with several companies in Europe including Europadance, Maggio Danza, Teatro Dell’Opera and Teatro di San Carlo, he joined Tulsa Ballet as a Demi-Soloist in 2004. In 2005, he joined Dominic Walsh Dance Theater in Houston as Principal Dancer. He joined Colorado Ballet as a soloist in 2013 and was promoted to principal in 2014.
Yosvani Ramos was born in Camagüey, Cuba and trained at the National Ballet School, then dancing with Jeune Ballet de France and Ballet de l’Opéra National de Paris after winning the Gold Medal at the Paris International Ballet Competition in 1998. He joined English National Ballet in 1999 and was promoted to Soloist, Senior Soloist, and then Principal Dancer. He danced with ENB until 2008, then joined The Australian Ballet as a Principal Artist, where he remained until 2013. He danced with Cincinnati Ballet in 2014 and joined Colorado Ballet in 2015 as principal dancer.
Asuka Sasaki was born in Nagano, Japan. She trained at the Beijing Dance Academy in China and later joined Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet as an Aspirant. She joined Colorado Ballet’s Company in 2005, was promoted to Soloist in 2010, and promoted to Principal in 2017. With Colorado Ballet, she has worked with accomplished choreographers such as Val Caniparoli, Eldar Aliev, Michael Pink, Ben Stevenson, Martin Fredmann, Lila York, Shelly Washington, Jessica Lang, Dwight Rhoden, Edwaard Liang and Amy Seiwert. Sasaki has danced many soloist and principal roles with the Company.
Sharon Wehner is originally from San Jose, California. She trained with San Jose Dance Theatre, San Francisco Ballet and San Jose/Cleveland Ballet. Ms. Wehner joined Colorado Ballet in 1995, was promoted to Principal in 1999, and in the last 22 years, has performed many lead roles with the Company. In addition to Colorado Ballet, Ms. Wehner has also performed with The Washington Ballet, Oakland Ballet and Amy Seiwert’s Imagery. She has also been a guest artist at the Vail Dance Festival, in Japan in the Aoyama Ballet Festival, and the National Ballet of Japan’s Golden Ballet Co-star.
Arianna Ciccarelli is from Bristol, CT. She began dancing ballet at age 12 and studied in the pre-professional resident program at The Nutmeg Conservatory for The Arts. While at Nutmeg, she studied under Eleanor D’Antuano, Sharon Dante, Kirk Peterson and Victoria Mazzerelli. She has spent her summers training at The School of American Ballet, English National Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, and Washington Ballet. Arianna was a member of the Colorado Ballet Studio Company in the 2013-2014 season. Before joining Colorado Ballet in 2016, she spent two years dancing with Ballet Arizona.
Morgan Buchanan is from Houston, Texas. She trained at the Ballet Center of Houston under the direction of Victoria Vittum and Gilbert Rome. Ms. Buchanan also trained at Houston Ballet’s Ben Stevenson Academy for two years, where she earned the highest final evaluation variation score in her class. Before joining the Colorado Ballet Studio Company in 2009, Ms. Buchanan attended summer programs with American Ballet Theatre, Orlando Ballet and Houston Ballet. She joined the Company in 2011 and was promoted to Soloist in 2016.
Alyssa Fazekas is from Orlando, Florida where she began her training at age 14. In 2010, she joined Orlando Ballet School and in 2012, joined Orlando Ballet II. Alyssa placed Top 12 in in both contemporary and classical categories in YAGP, performed in the YAGP Gala in Tampa, and moved on to the NYC Finals. In 2012, she was a semi-finalist at Helsinki International Ballet Competition. In 2014, she joined Milwaukee Ballet II, and in 2016 joined Ballet Arizona’s Studio Company. This is her first season with Colorado Ballet.
Ariel Breitman of Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania, began his dance training at the age of eight with the Boys Scholarship Program of Metropolitan Ballet Academy. At 16, Ariel moved to New York City to train with Edward Ellison. In 2012 and 2013, Ariel earned three gold medals from YAGP and one silver medal in 2013 from the Tanzolymp International Ballet Competition in Berlin. After graduating, Ariel joined The Washington Ballet Studio Company for one season. Ariel was invited to compete in the 2014 USA International Ballet Competition. He joined Colorado Ballet in 2014.
Ben Winegar is from Grand Rapids, Michigan and he began his training at the School of the Grand Rapids Ballet at the age of 11. There he was trained by Attila Mosolygo, Gaiane Akopian, and Akop Akopian, and had the opportunity to perform in several ballets with the Grand Rapids Ballet Company. In 2010, Ben spent a year training at the School of American Ballet. Upon graduating, he danced one season with the Los Angeles Ballet. This is Ben’s fifth season as a member of Colorado Ballet.
Bryce Lee was born in Missouri and started his professional training at 12 at Dmitri Kulev Classical Ballet Academy, in Laguna Hills. California. He trained during the Winter Term program at SAB from 2011-2012. Bryce received several awards in classical and contemporary forms of dance, 1st place, semi-finalist at YAGP Europe, as well as 2 time YAGP Finalist Qualifier. He attended several summer courses on full scholarship including SAB, Miami City Ballet and Colorado Ballet. He joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company in 2013. This will be Bryce’s fifth season with Colorado Ballet.
Christophor Moulton born in Colorado Springs, Colorado began his training with Rozanne David at the Dance Center of Colorado Springs and continued his training in Colorado with German Zemuel. He is a graduate of the Harid Conservatory in Florida. He also studied for a year at the Jacquelyn Kennedy Onassis School and is a recipient of the 2007 Rudolph Nureyev Education Fellowship. He joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company in 2009, was promoted into the Company in 2010, and was promoted to Soloist in 2017.
Emily Speed is originally from Argyle, TX and began her professional training under Marina Almayeva. In 2006, she was a Finalist at World Ballet Competition. She won first place in the classical division at the 2007 Youth American Grand Prix Regionals. Emily was one out of 100 participants worldwide who qualified and competed in the 2010 Varna International Ballet Competition in Varna, Bulgaria. In 2014, she went to the USA IBC. During her career, she has danced professionally with Alabama Ballet, Ballet Tucson, Boulder Ballet, and joined Colorado Ballet in 2014.
Fernanda Oliveira, from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, trained at the Escola Estadual de Danca Maria Olenewa in her hometown and later was awarded a full scholarship to The Washington School of Ballet, where she trained with Kee Juan Han, Carlos Varcárcel and Vladimir Djouloukhadze. While still a student at TWSB, Ms. Oliveira won the third prize in the regionals of the Youth America Grand Prix. Upon graduating, Ms. Oliveira joined The Washington Ballet as a Studio Company member. This is her third season with Colorado Ballet.
Born in Quito, Ecuador, Francisco moved to the USA in 1995. He began his ballet training in Louisville, Kentucky and at the age of 16 was invited to finish his professional training at the School of American Ballet in New York. Upon graduating in 2008, Francisco joined Boston Ballet where he danced for two years before joining the Barcelona Ballet. Francisco won 1st Place at the Premio Internacional de Danza Roseta Mauri, in 2011. Francisco joined Colorado Ballet during the 2012-2013 season and was promoted to soloist in 2015.
Jeremy Studinski began his training at the Colorado Conservatory of Dance at the age of 9. He then spent 2011-2013 in Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company. Then after spending two seasons as a member of Orlando Ballet II, he was promoted to apprentice with the company and then joined the full company the following year. Jeremy also performed in the Internationale Haydntage at the Esterhazy Palace in Eisenstadt, Austria with Oklahoma Festival Ballet. This is his first season as a company member.
Josh Allenback, a native of Colorado, has been dancing since he was four years old. He has studied on scholarship, with American Ballet Theatre, The Rock School, and Joffrey Ballet. He is also a former member of Houston Ballet II as well as Ballet San Antonio. Josh performed many principal roles in various classical ballets. He joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company in 2013 and was promoted into the Company in 2014.
Kevin Gaël Thomas
Kevin Gaël Thomas is from France and studied at Rosella Hightower’s International Ballet Center and at Canada’s National Ballet School, where he received a full scholarship and graduated with honors in 2006. Mr. Thomas also graduated with honors from the Music Conservatory in France for piano. He danced for a year with Houston Ballet II, then joined Colorado Ballet in 2007. Mr. Thomas was chosen to represent France at the New York International Ballet Competition in 2009 and at the USA Jackson International Ballet Competition in 2010. He was promoted to Soloist in 2016.
Originally from Miami, Florida, Francesca Martoccio received her early ballet training at Thomas Armour Youth Ballet and at the New World School of the Arts. In May 2016, Francesca graduated from SUNY Purchase where she received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance with a Ballet Concentration. In 2014, she was chosen by the faculty to study abroad at the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts. After graduating, Francesca joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company for the 2016-17 season. This is her first season as a Company member.
Kristine Padgett was born in Littleton, Colorado and began dancing at the age of three. At 11, she started training professionally at the Academy of Colorado Ballet. From 2006-2014, she attended summer intensives and training programs all over the world including ABT, the Royal Ballet School, and Bolshoi Ballet Summer Intensive in NYC. In 2011, she won a full scholarship to perform at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy’s spring gala in Moscow, Russia, then attended year-round. Ms. Padgett joined the Colorado Ballet studio company in 2013. This is her third season as a company member.
Born in Warren, New Jersey but raised in England, Kevin began dancing at the age of 5. At the age of 11, he was accepted into The Royal Ballet School where he graduated in July 2013. Kevin has won the Kenneth McMillan Choreographic Competition twice and had one of his ballets performed at the school’s annual show at the Royal Opera House. He has also been featured as a dancer on the BBC. Kevin joined Colorado Ballet in 2013. This is Kevin’s fifth season with Company.
Mackenzie Dessens is from New Orleans, Louisiana where she began her training at Giacobbe Academy of Dance and privately with Kimberly Beck. She attended summer programs in New York with the School of American Ballet and the American Ballet Theatre. Ms. Dessens continued her training at Houston Ballet’s Ben Stevenson Academy and upon completion, joined Cincinnati Ballet’s second company. With Cincinnati Ballet, Dessens performed many works with the company and the second company. This is Mackenzie’s third season with Colorado Ballet.
Melissa Zoebisch grew up in Mexico and studied at the Chamber Ballet of Jalisco. She received a scholarship to attend for a year at the Kirov Academy of Ballet, and returned to Mexico to graduate in 2004. She participated in many workshops around the world including: Cuba, Canada, Austria, Spain and the United States. In 2005, she joined the National Dance Company. Zoebisch was a finalist at the Korea International Ballet Competition, 2010 and recipient of a Special Award KIBC. Before joining Colorado Ballet in 2014, she freelanced with her husband around the country.
Regan Kucera grew up in Cary, North Carolina and started dancing at the age of four. She studied at International Ballet Academy in Cary under the direction of Rossana Nesta Gahagan, Servy Gallardo, Roberto Munoz and Miguel Campaneria. She attended summer programs at ABT NY, Orlando Ballet with full scholarship, and Saratoga Springs. She has participated in competitions including Youth American Grand Prix and World Ballet Competition. In 2013, she joined the Studio Company at Colorado Ballet. This is her second season as a company member.
Sarah Tryon was born in Hanmer, Ontario, Canada and at the age of 11, was accepted to train at Canada’s National Ballet School. During her training, Sarah participated in exchange programs with various international schools including Pacific Northwest Ballet School, École Supérieur De Danse Rosella Hightower, and Tanz Akademie Zurich. Upon graduating in 2010, she moved to New York City to train with Edward Ellison. In 2013, Sarah joined the Sarasota Ballet as a corps de ballet member. This is Sarah’s third season with Colorado Ballet.
Sean Omandam is from Fresno, California, where he began his training with Shirley Winters. He went on to train on full-scholarship at the Harid Conservatory in Boca Raton, Florida. Upon graduation in 2004, he joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company, and was promoted into the Company in 2005. In 2007, he was a competitor and gala performer at the New York International Ballet Competition. In 2013, he was featured as a contestant on the South Korean television show, Dancing 9. With Colorado Ballet, he has performed a variety of soloist and principal roles.
Born in Cork, Ireland, Tracy Jones started dancing at the age of five with Ballet Theatre Ireland. At 11, she went on to train at The Royal Ballet School. In 2006, Tracy won the Ursula Moreton choreographic competition and was a finalist of the Young British Dancer of the Year. She performed with the Royal Ballet on their 2007 International tour. Upon graduating, she joined the English National Ballet as an Artist. From 2008-2012, Tracy was a member of the Barcelona Ballet. Tracy joined Colorado Ballet in 2013 and was promoted to Soloist in 2017.
Tyler Rhoads is from Midland, Texas, where he began his training with Susan Clark at Midland Festival Ballet. He later went on to train on full-scholarship at the Harid Conservatory in Boca Raton, Florida, under the instruction of Victoria Schneider, Olivier Pardina, and Svetlana Osiyeva. After his graduation in 2011, he attended Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, studying under acclaimed staff including Violette Verdy and Michael Vernon. Upon his graduation from college, Tyler joined Colorado Ballet’s Studio Company, and he was promoted into the Company in 2016.
Nicolas Pelletier was born in Quebec City, Canada. He moved to California when he was eight, where he attended the San Francisco Ballet School for 10 years. He completed his training with Canada’s National Ballet School in 2010 and joined Alberta Ballet in 2011. In his six years with the company, he had the opportunity to dance many principal roles. He also had the pleasure of working closely with Jean Grand-Maître in the creation of many new works throughout his time at Alberta Ballet. This is his first season at Colorado Ballet.
Festival Fan Club
The Festival Fan Club is available year-round and includes early access ticketing for Dance for $20.17 along with other great benefits! For more information about the Fan Club call 970. 777.2015
Community Arts Access
To learn more about attending a performance through our Community Arts Access program or providing support to eliminate socioeconomic barriers to the arts, please contact Cathy Heller.