GERALD R. FORD AMPHITHEATER
The Festival’s lab-like environment is the ideal setting for new music and dance collaborations. Performed by an extraordinary lineup of Festival artists and the companies BalletX and DanceAspen, the 2023 NOW: Premieres performance will unveil new works created for the Festival by innovative choreographers of today including Kyle Abraham, Matthew Neenan, Justin Peck, Caili Quan, Jamar Roberts, Adji Cissoko, and Melissa Toogood. Learn more about the 2023 new works below!
Generously Underwritten in part by Gina Browning & Joe Illick.
CAN’T MAKE IT TO THE PERFORMANCE? WE WILL BE LIVESTREAMING TONIGHT’S SHOW AT 7:30PM MDT!
The stream will stay online for one week, so be sure to tune in before August 14 at 5pm MDT!
Photo credit: Mira Nadon performs Tiler Peck’s “And So” at the 2021 Vail Dance Festival. Photo by Christopher Duggan.
Reserved Pavilion Seats | $50-125
General Admission Lawn | $30
MORE TICKETING INFORMATION:
- We are offering a number of ticket packages and offerings this year. Click HERE to view.
- Children 12 and under receive free admission on the lawn with the purchase of an adult ticket.
- Students and faculty may purchase discounted lawn tickets for $10 each (excludes Dance for $20.23 and performances at the Vilar Performing Arts Center).
- Ticket prices are subject to change. Price listed does not include service fees.
- Questions? Contact the Box Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 970.845.TIXS(8497)
Gates open one hour prior to showtime.
Meet the Performers
Olivia Bell is a member of New York City Ballet’s Corps de Ballet. Born in Fort Worth, Texas, she trained locally before being accepted to the School of American Ballet in 2018. While a student, Olivia performed in the New York Choreographic Institute, the Virginia B. Toulmin Female Choreography Program, and the 2022 SAB Annual Workshop, originating a featured role in Gianna Reisen’s Signs. Olivia was selected for Rising Stars Weekend at Kaatsbaan Summer Festival in 2022, where she performed works by George Balanchine, and originated a role in Haley Winegarden’s Reminisce for Tomorrow. As an apprentice with New York City Ballet, Olivia has performed works by George Balanchine, including a featured role in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker.
India Bradley is a member of New York City Ballet’s Corps de Ballet. She was born in Detroit, Michigan and began her dance training at the age of four at The Link School of the Arts in Troy, Michigan. At the age of eleven, she attended the Academy of Russian Classical Ballet in Novi, Michigan, under the direction of Sergey Rayevitskey.
Ms. Bradley attended the summer program at Dance Theatre of Harlem in 2012, and entered DTH’s Professional Training Program under the direction of Andrea Long that fall.
She attended the 2014 summer session at the School of American Ballet, NYCB’s official school, and enrolled as a full-time student later that year.
Ms. Bradley was named an apprentice in August 2017 and joined the Company as a member of the Corps de Ballet in August 2018.
Charles “Lil Buck” Riley is a world-renowned and award-winning performing artist, entrepreneur, and advocate for the arts and humanities. Lil Buck’s dance repertoire includes a multitude of styles including Memphis Jookin’, ballet, hip-hop, and modern, just to name a few.
Over the course of his career, he has performed and collaborated with some of the world’s finest artists and brands including Yo-Yo Ma, Madonna, Alicia Keys, Janelle Monáe, Lizzo, Nike, Chanel, Versace, Louis Vuitton, Apple, Jordan, Lexus, Gap, and many others.
Outside of dance, Lil Buck is a true creative and has provided a unique skill-set to top-notch projects which include being a choreographer on the Starz TV series Blindspotting, Season 1 and 2, a guest judge on So You Think You Can Dance, and roles in both the movie Emperor and the feature film Her. Lil Buck designed a capsule collection for Versace and provided artistic consultation to many brands over his lengthy career. Recently, Lil Buck’s story and creative process were captured in the documentary Lil Buck: Real Swan which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and in the Netflix documentary series, MOVE.
Lil Buck has always had an entrepreneurial spirit. In 2014, Lil Buck was presented with the Wall Street Journal’s Innovator of the Year award. His strong business acumen is ever present in the many projects that he is involved in outside of dance which include ventures related to food and beverage, brand management, fashion, and production.
Currently, Lil Buck is personally producing multiple major stage shows which culminate the essence of dance as a tool to change the world. One of his newest productions in development transforms Lil Buck back to his home-town roots. Entitled Memphis Jookin’: The Show, this awe inspiring production brings Lil Buck’s career full circle.
Chun Wai Chan
Chun Wai Chan
Mr. Chan was born in Guangdong, China, in 1992 and trained at the Guangzhou Art School from 2004 to 2010. In 2010 he was finalist at the Prix de Lausanne, Switzerland, which earned him a full scholarship to study with Houston Ballet Academy. Chan joined the corps de ballet of Houston Ballet in 2012 and was promoted to principal dancer in 2017. In 2020, Chan was among the finalists of Hunan TV’s “Dance Smash”.
Chan joined NYCB as a soloist in 2021 and was promoted to principal dancer the following year, making him the company’s first Chinese principle since its founding in 1948. Most recently, Forbes China included Chan in their “30 under 30” list and he was featured on the cover of Dance magazine for May 2023. (@chunner)
Jeffrey Cirio began his ballet training at the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. He also studied at Boston Ballet School and Orlando Ballet School. In 2006, he was awarded a Grand Prix medal in the regionals, and a gold medal in the New York finals of Youth America Grand Prix. He went on to win a bronze medal at the 2006 U.S. International Ballet Competition in Jackson, MS and a silver medal at the 5th Seoul International Dance Competition. Cirio’s other awards include “Best Male Dancer” at the 2006 American Ballet Competition, a gold medal at Tanzolymp Competition, a silver level award in ballet at the National Foundation for Advancement of the Arts 2009 Arts Week, the Senior Grand Prix Award and the Mary Day Award for Artistry at the 2009 Youth America Grand Prix, and a gold medal at the 2009 World Ballet Competition. He went on to win a gold medal at the 2009 Helsinki International Ballet Competition, becoming the first American to do so.
Cirio danced for Boston Ballet in 2009 as a corps de ballet member and was awarded the coveted Princess Grace Fellowship for 2009. He was promoted to second soloist in 2010, soloist in 2011 and principal in 2012.
Cirio joined American Ballet Theatre in September 2015 as a Soloist and was promoted to Principal in June 2016. In 2017, Cirio was invited to be a guest artist with English National Ballet. He joined ENB as Lead Principal in 2018 where he danced the role of the Creature in Akram Khan’s “Creature.” Cirio was nominated as Best Male Dancer in the UK in 2019, 2021 and 2022 by the National Dance Awards. In 2022, he won Outstanding Male Classical Performance for his role in “Creature.”
Cirio performs in galas and events throughout the US, and internationally, including in China, Japan, Ukraine, Mexico, and Mongolia
He is the co-founder (with his sister and fellow principal, Lia Cirio) and Artistic Director of Cirio Collective, and has created works for the Collective, Boston Ballet, Ballet Academy East, Central PA Youth Ballet, and English National Ballet’s Emerging Dancer.
Adji Cissoko // Artist-In-Residence
Adji Cissoko // Artist-In-Residence
Adji Cissoko was born and grew up in Munich, Germany where she trained at the Ballet Academy Munich and graduated with a diploma in dance. Cissoko attended the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre in New York City on full scholarship, before joining the National Ballet of Canada in 2010. In 2012 she was awarded the Patron Award of Merit by the Patrons’ Council Committee of The National Ballet of Canada. Cissoko joined LINES Ballet in 2014. Since then she’s originated many central roles and guested for galas worldwide. Cissoko has given multiple masterclasses and taught classes around the world as part of the company’s outreach program. In 2020, she became certified in health/life coaching and ABT’s National Training Curriculum. Cissoko choreographed her first piece “AZIZ “ for Ballet X in 2021. She also is a 2022 recipient of the Toulmin fellowship.
Patricia Delgado (she/her), first generation Cuban-American, was born in Miami, Florida. She was a principal dancer with the Miami City Ballet where she worked for almost 20 years and is currently a freelance artist living in NYC and a member of the dance faculty at The Juilliard School. She began her dance training, under cuban tutelage at 5 years old. She spent summers training in NYC at the School of American Ballet and American Ballet Theatre. In 2000, she was the Princess Grace Nominee and Edward Villella invited her to join his company as an apprentice.
Patricia Delgado has performed works by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Twyla Tharp, Paul Taylor, Anthony Tudor, Richard Alston, Christopher Wheeldon, Edward Villella and Trey McIntyre as well as classical works such as “Coppelia”, “Giselle” and “Don Quixote”. One of her most memorable performances was performing the role of Juliet in John Cranko’s “Romeo and Juliet”. Patricia has also been incredibly fortunate to have created feature works with choreographers Alexei Ratmansky, Justin Peck, Pam Tanowitz, Jamar Roberts, Lauren Lovette, John Heginbotham, and Jodi Melnick among others.
She has performed at The Bolshoi, in Moscow, at the Theatre du Chatelet, in Paris, France, at the Chicago Dancing Festival, at the Vail International Dance Festival in Colorado and in New York City; at Fall for Dance at City Center, at the Joyce Theater and at the Koch Theatre at Lincoln Center among others.
Patricia has written several essays for dance publications. One entitled “Why I Dance” in January of 2015 for Dance Magazine and one for Dance Spirit Magazine in April of 2013.
She performed as Maggie Anderson in the musical “Brigadoon”, directed and choreographed by Christopher Wheeldon at Encores! City Center, she starred in the music video “The Dark Side of the Gym” for The National and also appeared as a guest performer on The Tonight Show. She is a repetiteur for Justin Peck. She staged “In Creases” on Boston Ballet, Ballet Arizona, and for members of The American Ballet Theatre and “Heatscape” in Dresden, Germany at the Semperoper Ballett. She was an Associate Producer on the 2020 Broadway revival of West Side Story and she is an Associate Choreographer on the feature film West Side Story, directed by Steven Spielberg. She was named a “Mujeres Imparables” by Telemundo in February 2022. And most recently joined the Advisory Committee at the Jerome Robbins Dance Division, New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
She is devoted to creating a nurturing and positive environment of diversity, authenticity, inclusivity, vulnerability and belonging in all that she embarks upon, especially as she ventures into producing work for artists she admires, most recently Adriana Pierce’s #QueerTheBallet.
She and her husband, Justin Peck welcomed their daughter, Lucia Isabella into this world in March, 2021.
Philip Duclos is a member of the Corps de Ballet with The Royal Danish Ballet. He has danced featured roles in Wayne McGregor’s Dante Project, George Balanchine’s Scotch Symphony and The Nutcracker, John Neumeier’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Gregory Dean’s Gotta Dance. He has performed roles in Jerome Robbins’ Glass Pieces and The Four Seasons, August Bournonville’s La Sylphide and Napoli, as well as Nikolaj Hubbe’s Swan Lake and Giselle. He has also attended the Vail Dance Festival in 2021, 2022, and 2023.
Robert Fairchild began dancing at the age of four in Salt Lake City. He began his training at the School of American Ballet at the age of 15 and shortly after rose through the ranks of the prestigious New York City Ballet. He became an apprentice with NYCB in June 2005. The following June, he joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet. He was promoted to soloist in May 2007 and was promoted to Principal Dancer in October 2009.
Robert Fairchild made his Broadway debut last year with his breakout role as “Jerry Mulligan” in the Tony Award-winning musical AN AMERICAN IN PARIS. He was nominated for the Tony Award for Best Performance By An Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical, and won the 2015 Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards for Outstanding Actor in a Musical, the 2015 Astaire Award for Best Male Dancer, and the 2015 Theatre World Award. He was also nominated for the 2015 Drama League Award for Distinguished Performance.
He appears regularly in NYCB’s seasons at Lincoln Center. His roles range from Prince Desirè in The Sleeping Beauty to works by world renowned choreographer William Forsythe. Last Fall he participated in “Broadway at the White House” where he danced for the First Lady Michelle Obama.
TV: “Julie’s Greenroom” on Netflix, Romeo in NYCB’s “Romeo and Juliet” and Carousel Boy in NY Philharmonic’s “Carousel,” both for PBS; “Live From Lincoln Center”, “Dancing With The Stars”, “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert”, “Live with Kelly and Michael”, “CBS Sunday Morning”, “60 Minutes.” Film: NY Export: Opus Jazz.
Cameron Grant is recently retired after 37 years with the New York City Ballet. As a solo pianist, he performed a vast repertoire for solo piano including the Bach Goldberg Variations, Pictures at an Exhibition, Dances at a Gathering, Polyphonia, In the Night, and numerous other solo premieres. The concerti he has performed include works by Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, Hindemith, Dohnanyi, Prokofiev, Bartok, MacMillan, Ravel and Gershwin. He toured with the company across the globe in theaters in St Petersburg, Athens, Edinburgh, Paris, London, Parma, Taipei, Tokyo and Seoul and has appeared in festivals in New Hampshire, Vail and Nantucket. A renowned collaborative pianist, Cameron has worked and/or recorded with Joel Krosnick, Ronald Thomas, Hiroko Yakima, The Leonardo Trio with Erica Kiesewetter and Jonathan Spitz, and Zina Schiff, among others. He spent five years touring with James Winn as half of the Grant-Winn piano duo, a duo that took top honors at the Munich Competition. Cameron was also a member of the New York New Music Ensemble. In 2004, he won an Emmy Award as a soloist in the Live From Lincoln Center broadcast, “Balanchine at 100,” and was invited to perform at the Kennedy Center Honors with three other members of the New York City Ballet for President Bush.
Scholar-In-Residence // Born in San Diego, California, Spencer Lenain began his dance training at age 7 at Ballet Arte where he was instructed by Erlends Zieminch and Sara Viale. He also attended nine summer intensives at American Ballet Theater, earning the National Training Scholar scholarship three times. He attended the California Institute of the Arts and graduated with a BFA in dance in May 2024. Spencer is also very active on social media where his ballet videos are featured on TikTok @spencerdancerrr and Instagram @spencerdancer.
Lauren Lovette personifies the intertwining of dance and choreography, moving seamlessly from one to the other. Her work has been commissioned and performed by leading dance companies and festivals, including the New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, the Vail International Dance Festival, American Ballet Theatre Studio Company, the Paul Taylor Dance Company, Nevada Ballet Theatre, Juilliard, Oregon Ballet Theater, Colorado Ballet, as well as a self-produced evening entirely of her own work in which she also danced, Why It Matters.
Born in Thousand Oaks, California, Lovette began studying ballet at the age of 11 at the Cary Ballet Conservatory in Cary, North Carolina. She enrolled at SAB as a full time student in 2006. In October 2009, Ms. Lovette became an apprentice with NYCB and joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet in September 2010. Promoted to soloist in February 2013 and to principal dancer in June 2015, she stepped down from her position at the company in 2021 in order to embark on a career devoted to dance and choreography in more equal measure. She is now the choreographer in residence at the Paul Taylor Dance Company and performs as a guest principal dancer around the world.
Ms. Lovette received the Clive Barnes Award for dance in December 2012 and was the 2012-2013 recipient of the Janice Levin Award.
SARA MEARNS, Columbia, SC, principal dancer New York City Ballet since 2008. Originated roles with choreographers Justin Peck, Kyle Abraham, Alexei Ratmansky, Pam Tanowitz, Bobbi Jene Smith, Christopher Wheeldon, Guillaume Cote, Beth Gill, among others. Guest Performer: Paul Taylor Dance Company, The Cunningham Centennial Celebration, Jodi Melnick Dance, Bill T Jones/Lee Ming Wei, and Wang Ramirez. At NYCC, she starred in Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes, Encores! I Married An Angel, and Twyla Now as well as multiple Fall for Dances, and performed Dances of Isadora Duncan at Lincoln Center. At The Joyce in 2022, Sara performed a full evening with five world premier pieces, titled “A piece of Work”, awarded the Bessie Award for outstanding performer in 2018, awarded the Dance Magazine Award in 2019, and an Honorary Doctorate University of South Carolina in 2019.
Miriam Miller was born in Iowa City, Iowa, and began her dance training in 2001 at the University of Iowa Youth Ballet and School of Dance. In 2006, she began studying at City Ballet of Iowa. She attended summer courses at SAB in 2011 and 2012, enrolling as a full-time student during the 2012 winter term. Miller became an apprentice with NYCB in January 2015 and joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet in January 2016. In January 2022, Miller was promoted to Soloist with NYCB. Since joining the Company, Miller has performed featured roles in works by George Balanchine, Peter Martins, Justin Peck and Jerome Robbins, and she has also originated roles in works by Peck, Christopher Wheeldon, Lauren Lovette, and Pam Tanowitz. Miller is a recipient of the 2017 Princess Grace Award.
Mayfield Myers was born in New York City and raised in East Hampton, New York. She began ballet at the age of 9 with Sara Jo Strickland in Bridgehampton, NY.
In 2013, she entered The School of American Ballet on scholarship, and studied there for 4 years. As a student she performed with the New York City Ballet in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, Coppelia, Harlequinade and Jerome Robbins Circus Polka.
Additionally, she trained with Marcia Dale Weary at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and Miami City Ballet School under the direction of Arantxa Ochoa.
In 2021, Mayfield competed in the Prix De Lausanne where she performed variations from La Bayadere (Gamzatti) and Le Sacre Du Printemps. She was also invited to the international finals of the 2021 Youth America Grand Prix. Mayfield joined Philadelphia Ballet II in August 2021. She was promoted to Corps De Ballet in June 2022.
Unity Phelan was born in Princeton, New Jersey where she studied at the Princeton Ballet School. After attending summer courses at the School of American Ballet, Phelan was invited to attend the school full time and remained at the school for three years. Phelan was invited to join the New York City Ballet in the winter of 2012 as an apprentice and joined the company as a Corps de Ballet member in 2013. In the Winter of 2017, Phelan was promoted to Soloist dancer and in the Fall of 2021, she was promoted to Principal dancer. In her time at New York City Ballet, Phelan has danced numerous ballets by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Alexei Ratmansky, Justin Peck, Christopher Wheeldon and other choreographers. Phelan has been featured in Dance Magazine, Elle Magazine, and People Style Magazine. In the last couple years, Phelan has been found on the silver screen acting in “John Wick 3: Parabellum” and “I’m Thinking of Ending Things”. In 2019, Phelan was awarded the Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award for her work at New York City Ballet.
Caili Quan is a New York-based choreographer who danced with BalletX from 2013 to 2020. She has created works for BalletX, The Juilliard School, Vail Dance Festival, American Repertory Ballet, Flight Path Dance Project, Stars of American Ballet, Asbury Park Dance Festival, Oakland Ballet, Columbia Ballet Collaborative, and Ballet Academy East. She served as an Artistic Partnership Initiative Fellow and a Toulmin Creator at The Center for Ballet and the Arts at NYU. With BalletX she performed new works by Matthew Neenan, Nicolo Fonte, Gabrielle Lamb, Penny Saunders, Trey McIntyre, and danced at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Belgrade Dance Festival, and DEMO by Damian Woetzel at the Kennedy Center. Mahålang, a short documentary that wove familial conversations of her Chamorro Filipino upbringing on Guam with scenes from BalletX’s Love Letter, was shown at the Hawai’i International Film Festival, CAAMFest, and the Dance on Camera Festival at Lincoln Center. She also participated in New York Choreographic Institute’s 2022 Fall Session under the direction of Adrian Danchig-Waring. Caili is a Creative Associate at The Juilliard School.
Johnny Gandelsman, violin
Colin Jacobsen, violin
Nicholas Cords, viola
Michael Nicolas, cello
With their gripping performance style and unquenchable appetite for musical adventure, Brooklyn Rider has carved a singular space in the world of string quartets over their fifteen-plus year history. Defining the string quartet as a medium with deep historic roots and endless possibility for invention, they find equal inspiration in musical languages ranging from late Beethoven to Persian classical music to American roots music to the endlessly varied voices of living composers. Claiming no allegiance to either end of the historical spectrum, Brooklyn Rider most comfortably operates within the long arc of the tradition, seeking to illuminate works of the past with fresh insight while coaxing the malleable genre into the future through an inclusive programming vision, deep-rooted collaborations with a wide range of global tradition bearers, and the creation of thoughtful and relevant frames for commissioning projects.
The upcoming concert season is strongly illustrative of the intrepid musical appetite of Brooklyn Rider. This fall, they began unveiling a major new commissioning and programmatic venture called The Four Elements; an exploration of the four classical elements (earth, air, water, and fire) as metaphor for both the complex inner world of the string quartet and the current health of planet Earth. Featuring new commissions – each based on an element – by Andreia Pinto Correia, Conrad Tao, Dan Trueman, and Akshaya Tucker, this project also features existing works from the repertoire including Shostakovich’s 8th String Quartet, Dutilleux’s Ainsi la nuit, Golijov’s Tenebrae, and American folk music collected by Ruth Crawford, newly arranged by Brooklyn Rider’s own Colin Jacobsen. This winter, the quartet will also release The Wanderer, their first ever live concert recording, made at Paliesius Manor in eastern Lithuania while on tour last spring. The album consists of two works written recently for Brooklyn Rider: Gonzalo Grau’s Aroma a distancia and Osvaldo Golijov’s Um Dia bom. Also featured is Brooklyn Rider’s signature interpretation of Schubert’s iconic “Death and the Maiden” string quartet. This season also sees the quartet reuniting with Magos Herrera across the U.S. for their Dreamers project. Looking further into the future, they will expand work already underway with Syrian clarinetist Kinan Azmah, including the future release of a collaborative album.
The 2021-22 season boasted two unique collaborative ventures: one with Israeli mandolin virtuoso Avi Avital, and the other a brand new phase of work with Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, where they explored themes of love and death through the music of Franz Schubert and Rufus Wainwright. Also, 2022’s release of The Stranger (Avie Records) with tenor Nicholas Phan was recently nominated for a 2023 Grammy® award and made numerous best-of lists for 2022, including The New Yorker.
Prior to the global pandemic, the 2019-20 season saw a veritable explosion of new projects and releases. Shared at the height of the US lockdown, the Grammy®-nominated recording Healing Modes (In A Circle Records) presented Beethoven’s towering Opus 132 — the composer’s late testament on healing and the restorative power of new creation — interwoven with five new commissions powerfully exploring topics as wide-ranging as the US-Mexico border conflict, the Syrian refugee crisis, the mental health epidemic, and physical well-being. Described by The New Yorker as a project which “…could not possibly be more relevant or necessary than it is currently,” the composers include Reena Esmail, Gabriela Lena Frank, Matana Roberts, Caroline Shaw, and Du Yun.
Earlier in the same season saw the release of two projects from vastly different musical spheres. The Butterfly, with the master Irish fiddler Martin Hayes (In A Circle Records), an album which the Irish Times described as “a masterclass in risk-taking,” and the other, Sun On Sand (Nonesuch Records), featuring the music of Patrick Zimmerli with saxophone giant Joshua Redman and fellow collaborators Scott Colley on bass and Satoshi Takeishi, percussion.
In fall 2018, Brooklyn Rider released Dreamers on Sony Music Masterworks with Mexican jazz vocalist Magos Herrera. Celebrating the power of beauty as a political act, Dreamers amplifies the visionary artistry of Violeta Parra, Federico Garcia Lorca, Gilberto Gil, Joao Gilberto, Octavio Paz, and others, all who dared to dream under repressive regimes. Featuring gems from the Ibero-American songbook in evocative arrangements by Jaques Morelenbaum, Diego Schissi, Gonzalo Grau, Guillermo Klein, and Brooklyn Rider’s own Colin Jacobsen, Dreamers topped numerous charts and garnered a Grammy® nomination for best arrangement (Gonzalo Grau’s “Niña”). Touring widely to support the album, they appeared at venues ranging from New York City’s Jazz at Lincoln Center to Mexico City’s Deco masterpiece, the Palacio de Bellas Artes.
Brooklyn Rider has remained steadfast in their commitment to generate new music for string quartet at nearly every phase of their history. To kick off the 2017-18 season, Brooklyn Rider released Spontaneous Symbols (In a Circle Records), featuring new commissions by Tyondai Braxton, Evan Ziporyn, Paula Matthusen, Kyle Sanna, and Colin Jacobsen. In the 2015-16 season, the group celebrated its tenth anniversary with the groundbreaking multi-disciplinary project The Brooklyn Rider Almanac, for which it recorded and toured 15 specially commissioned works by musicians from the worlds of folk, jazz, and indie rock, each inspired by a different artistic muse. The Fiction Issue, with singer-songwriter Gabriel Kahane, featured his composition which was premiered in 2012 at Carnegie Hall by Kahane, Brooklyn Rider, and Shara Nova. Additionally, Brooklyn Rider has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the music of the iconic American composer Philip Glass, which began with 2011’s much-praised recording Brooklyn Rider Plays Philip Glass and continued with two subsequent installments of Glass’s works for string quartet, all released on the composer’s label Orange Mountain Music.
Numerous other collaborations have helped give rise to NPR Music’s observation that Brooklyn Rider is “recreating the 300-year-old form of string quartet as a vital and creative 21st-century ensemble.” During the 2016-17 season, Brooklyn Rider released an album entitled So Many Things on Naïve Records with Swedish mezzo-soprano Anne Sofie von Otter, comprising music by Colin Jacobsen, Caroline Shaw, John Adams, Nico Muhly, Björk, Sting, Kate Bush and Elvis Costello, among others. Some Of A Thousand Words, an evening-length program with choreographer Brian Brooks and former New York City Ballet prima ballerina Wendy Whelan, was an intimate series of duets and solos in which the quartet’s live onstage music is a dynamic and central creative component. Some Of A Thousand Words was featured at the 2016 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, before two U.S. tours, including a week-long run at New York City’s Joyce Theater. A collaboration with Dance Heginbotham with music written by Colin Jacobsen resulted in Chalk And Soot, an evening-length work presented by Lincoln Center’s White Lights Festival in 2014. Brooklyn Rider has also frequently teamed up with banjoist Béla Fleck, with whom they appeared on two different albums, 2017’s Juno Concerto and 2013’s The Impostor. And in one of their longest-standing musical friendships to date, Brooklyn Rider and Iranian kamancheh player Kayhan Kalhor released the highly praised recording Silent City (World Village) in 2008, still touring the project to this day.
Calvin Royal III
Calvin Royal III
Calvin Royal III is an acclaimed internationally recognized Principal classical ballet dancer. He began his ballet training at fourteen and a half, and received a scholarship from ABT’s Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School of ballet in 2007. Despite his unprecedented late start, he was promoted to the American Ballet Theatre’s Main Company in 2010, achieved Soloist in 2017, and Principal Dancer in 2020. This makes him the third African-American artist to achieve this honor in the history of the iconic Company – following in the footsteps of Desmond Richardson and Misty Copeland.
Calvin has performed star turns throughout ABT’s global tours, and at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City – as the title role in George Balanchine’s Apollo, Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake, Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, The Prince in Alexei Ratmansky’s The Nutcracker, Count Albrecht in Giselle, and has worked with notable choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Justin Peck, Benjamin Millepied, Alonzo King, Mark Morris, Wayne McGreggor, Kyle Abraham, Michelle Dorrance, Jamar Roberts, and many more.
Calvin was a finalist at the Clive Barnes Awards, the winner of the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship, a cover star of Dance Magazine in July 2020, and was the 2020/21 Artist in Residence at the Vail Dance Festival in Vail, Colorado. He is represented by IMG Models and has been featured in global campaigns for GAP, Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein, Target, Ralph Lauren, Mavi Jeans, Canali, and has partnered with Deckers Brands, HOKA, Johnnie Walker and The Luxury Collection hotels. Follow Calvin on Instagram & TikTok @calvinroyaliii
Michael Scales is a musician for dance in New York City, where he serves as rehearsal pianist at New York City Ballet, music director and pianist for New York Theatre Ballet, class pianist for the School of American Ballet, and formerly as a rehearsal pianist for American Ballet Theatre. Outside of NYC, Michael is the music director and pianist for Kaatsbaan International Dance Center’s Summer Ballet Intensive. Michael has performed at numerous venues around New York City including Carnegie Hall, the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center, the 92nd Street Y, Rockefeller Center, and in halls across the country and internationally. Michael holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania, where he studied with Dr. Maria Asteriadou, and a Masters of Music degree from James Madison University, where he studied with Dr. Lori Piitz.
Caroline Shaw is a musician who moves among roles, genres, and mediums, trying to imagine a world of sound that has never been heard before but has always existed. She works often in collaboration with others, as producer, composer, violinist, and vocalist. Caroline is the recipient of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize in Music, several Grammy awards, an honorary doctorate from Yale, and a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship. This year’s projects include the score to “Fleishman is in Trouble” (FX/Hulu), vocal work with Rosalía (MOTOMAMI), the score to Josephine Decker’s “The Sky Is Everywhere” (A24/Apple), music for the National Theatre’s production of “The Crucible” (dir. Lyndsey Turner), Justin Peck’s “Partita” with NY City Ballet, a new stage work “LIFE” (Gandini Juggling/Merce Cunningham Trust), the premiere of “Microfictions Vol. 3” for NY Philharmonic and Roomful of Teeth, a live orchestral score for Wu Tsang’s silent film “Moby Dick” co-composed with Andrew Yee, two albums on Nonesuch (“Evergreen” and “The Blue Hour”), the score for Helen Simoneau’s dance work “Delicate Power”, tours of Graveyards & Gardens (co-created immersive theatrical work with Vanessa Goodman), and tours with So Percussion featuring songs from “Let The Soil Play Its Simple Part” (Nonesuch), amid occasional chamber music appearances as violist (Chamber Music Society of Minnesota, La Jolla Music Society). Caroline has written over 100 works in the last decade, for Anne Sofie von Otter, Davóne Tines, Yo Yo Ma, Renée Fleming, Dawn Upshaw, LA Phil, Philharmonia Baroque, Seattle Symphony, Cincinnati Symphony, Aizuri Quartet, The Crossing, Dover Quartet, Calidore Quartet, Brooklyn Rider, Miro Quartet, I Giardini, Ars Nova Copenhagen, Ariadne Greif, Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Britt Festival, and the Vail Dance Festival. She has contributed production to albums by Rosalía, Woodkid, and Nas. Her work as vocalist or composer has appeared in several films, tv series, and podcasts including The Humans, Bombshell, Yellowjackets, Maid, Dark, Beyonce’s Homecoming, Tár, Dolly Parton’s America, and More Perfect. Her favorite color is yellow, and her favorite smell is rosemary.
KJ Takahashi is a member of New York City Ballet’s corps de ballet. He was born in Dallas, Texas, and began his ballet training at age 8 at Ballet Academy of Texas under the direction of Lisa Slagle. In 2014, he studied ballet at Mejia Ballet International under the direction of Paul Mejia and in 2015, he began training at Ballet Tech under the direction of Elliot Feld. He entered the School of American Ballet, the official school of New York City Ballet, in 2016, and received additional training at summer courses at the Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Mr. Takahashi was named an apprentice with NYCB in 2019 and as an apprentice, performed featured roles in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker (Candy Cane, Tea) and Lauren Lovette’s The Shaded Line. He originated a featured role in Kyle Abraham’s dance film Where We Fell in 2020 before joining the Corps de Ballet in August 2021. Mr. Takahashi was recently promoted to soloist in April 2023.
Mr. Takahashi was the Janice Levin Dancer Honoree for 2022-2023.
Stephanie Terasaki was born and raised in southern California. She began her formal training at Inland Pacific Ballet Academy while also attending the Orange County School of the Arts. She then received her BFA from The Juilliard School under the direction of Lawrence Rhodes. Additionally she has attended summer programs with Cedar Lake Dance Company, Springboard Montreal, and Nederlands Dans Theatre during her time in school. After graduating from The Juilliard School in 2016, Stephanie joined GroundWorks Dance Theater for their 2016 summer and fall season. She currently freelances in New York City and has had the opportunity to work with various companies and choreographers including, Brian Brooks Dance, ZviDance, MeenMoves, Dolly Sfeir, and Kyle Abraham. In the recent year, she has had the wonderful opportunity to assist Kyle Abraham in new commissioned works for The Royal Ballet, New York City Ballet, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Company.
Davóne Tines, heralded as an artist “changing what it means to be a classical singer (The New Yorker) and “[one] of the most powerful voices of our time” (Los Angeles Times), is a pathbreaking artist whose work encompasses a diverse repertoire, ranging from early music to new commissions by leading composers, while exploring the social issues of today. A creator, curator, and performer at the intersection of many histories, cultures, and aesthetics, he is engaged in work that blends opera, art song, spirituals, contemporary classical, gospel, and protest songs as a means to tell a deeply personal story of perseverance connecting to all of humanity.
Tines is a musician who takes full agency of his work, devising new programs and pieces from conception to performance. He reflects this ethos in his Recital No. 1: MASS, an examination of the liturgy, comparing Western European, African American, and 21st Century traditions; as well as in his orchestral creations: Concerto No. 1: SERMON, a work he premiered with the Philadelphia and BBC Symphony Orchestras; and Concerto No. 2: ANTHEM, premiered with the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Tines has also premiered operas by today’s leading composers, including John Adams, Terence Blanchard, and Matthew Aucoin; and his concert appearances include performances of works ranging from Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony to Kaija Saariaho’s True Fire. This season, he makes his Metropolitan Opera debut performing in John Adams’ El Niño.
He is Brooklyn Academy of Music’s Artist-in-Residence and Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra & Chorale’s first-ever Creative Partner. He recently served as Artist-in-Residence at Detroit Opera—an appointment that culminated in his performance in the title role of Anthony Davis’ X: The Life and Times of Malcolm X in the spring of 2022. Tines is featured on the Grammy-nominated world premiere recording of the opera released on BMOP/sound in 2022. Tines is a member of AMOC and co-creator of The Black Clown, a music theater experience commissioned and premiered by American Repertory Theater. He is Musical America’s 2022 Vocalist of the Year, a winner of the 2020 Sphinx Medal of Excellence, and the recipient of the 2018 Emerging Artists Award from Lincoln Center. He is a graduate of The Juilliard School and Harvard University.
Melissa Toogood is a Sydney and New York based Dancer, Master Teacher, Stager, Coach, Contributor, Mother, and sometimes Choreographer. She is a New York and Performance Award (Bessie) winning Performer. Melissa is both Dancer and Rehearsal Director for Pam Tanowitz Dance. She has assisted Tanowitz on new creations for the Australian Ballet, L.A. Dance Project, Martha Graham Dance Company, Paul Taylor Dance Company, The Royal Ballet, and others. She was a member of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, is a 2013 & 2015 Merce Cunningham fellow, has taught Cunningham Technique since 2007, and is a licensed Stager of Merce Cunningham’s work. She has performed with Kyle Abraham/A.I.M., Kimberly Bartosik/Daela, Rosie Herrera Dance Theater, Rashaun Mitchell + Silas Reiner, Stephen Petronio Company, Sally Silvers & Dancers, Christopher Williams, The Bang Group: Tap Lab, Bill Young and many others. Her own work has been commissioned by the Boston Ballet, New York Theater Ballet and the Vail International Dance Festival. This year marks Melissa’s 10th season with the Festival.
James Whiteside is redefining the meaning of multihyphenate as a principal dancer and choreographer for the American Ballet Theater, hilarious pop music performer, drag queen, host of the “Front Row” podcast, and author of “Center Center”.
He began his ballet training at age nine at the D’Valda & Sirico Dance and Music Centre in Fairfield, CT. After completing his training, he was a principal dancer with Boston Ballet until 2012 and has been a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre since 2013, dancing principal roles in Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Romeo & Juliet, Giselle, and many more. Additionally, Whiteside has choreographed for pop stars Mariah Carey and Taylor Swift. He continues to choreograph for music videos, commercials, film and ballet including New American Romance and City of Women for American Ballet Theatre and Marilyn’s Funeral for The Juilliard School.
Off the ABT stage, Whiteside published his first book, “Center Center: A Funny, Sexy, Sad Almost Memoir of a Boy in Ballet”. He also performs pop music under the stage name JbDubs. He writes and produces his own music and choreographs his performances and music videos, which have viewership in the millions. Whiteside’s social media channels have nearly one million followers and his sponsorships include brands such as St. Germain, Sonos, Uber, and more. He also hosts his own popular podcast, “Front Row with James Whiteside.” Whiteside has completed Harvard Business School’s Crossover Into Business program.