Ballet Stars

2019 Stars of the Corps: 10 Young Dancers That Stand Out in a Crowd

New York City Ballet's Mira Nadon as the Courage Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty. Erin Baiano, Courtesy NYCB.

Here are 10 corps de ballet dancers we're swooning over. Click their names and photos to learn more!


Courtney Lavine, American Ballet Theatre

Courtney Lavine in Marcelo Gomes' AfterEffect. Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy ABT.

Sage Humphries, Boston Ballet

From left: Sage Humphries and Lauren Herfindahl in John Cranko's Romeo and Juliet. Liza Voll, Courtesy Boston Ballet.


Mira Nadon, New York City Ballet

Mira Nadon in A Midsummer Night's Dream. Erin Baiano, Courtesy NYCB.

Christopher D'Ariano, Pacific Northwest Ballet

Christopher D'Ariano with PNB soloist Leah Merchant in Robyn Mineko Williams' The Trees The Trees. Angela Sterling, Courtesy PNB.

Tommie Kesten, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre

Tommie Kesten in The Sleeping Beauty with Lucius Kirst. Rich Sofranko, Courtesy Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre.

Edson Barbosa, The Joffrey Ballet

Edson Barbosa in Swan Lake. Cheryl Mann, Courtesy The Joffrey Ballet.

Mayumi Enokibara, Miami City Ballet

Mayumi Enokibara in Miami City Ballet's production of George Balanchine's The Nutcracker. Alexander Iziliaev, Courtesy MCB.

Adelaide Clauss, The Washington Ballet

Adelaide Clauss and Tamás Krizsa perform Swan Lake's Act II pas de deux. Gene Witkowski, Courtesy The Washington Ballet.

Jasmine Jimison, San Francisco Ballet

Jasmine Jimison as the Fairy of Playfulness in The Sleeping Beauty. Erik Tomasson, Courtesy SFB.

Yuria Isaka, Staatsballett Berlin

Yan Revazov, Courtesy Staatsballett Berlin.

Francisco Estevez, Courtesy Colorado Ballet Academy

When you're looking for a ballet program to take you to the next level, there are a lot of factors to consider. While it's tempting to look for the biggest name that will accept you, the savvy dancer knows that successful training has more to do with the attention and opportunities you'll get.

We put together a few of the most important things for dancers to look for in a summer or year-round training program, with the help of the experts at Colorado Ballet Academy:

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Courtesy Nichols

On Instagram this week, Misty Copeland reposted a picture of two Russian ballerinas covered head to toe in black, exposing the Bolshoi's practice of using black face in the classical ballet La Bayadère. The post has already received over 60,000 likes and 2,000 comments, starting a long overdue conversation.

Comments have been pouring in from every angle imaginable: from history lessons on blackface, to people outside of the ballet world expressing disbelief that this happens in 2019, to castigations of Copeland for exposing these young girls to the line of fire for what is ultimately the Bolshoi's costuming choice, to the accusations that the girls—no matter their cultural competence—should have known better.

I am a black dancer, and in 2003, when I was 11 years old, I was dressed up in blackface to perform in the Mariinsky Ballet's production of La Bayadère.

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Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy US Prix de Ballet

The US Prix de Ballet is taking an unconventional approach to the ballet competition—by putting the competitors' health first. After a successful first year in 2018, the Prix is returning to San Diego, CA this February with an even more comprehensive lineup of wellness workshops and master classes, in addition, of course, to the high-level competition.

Though the talent is top-notch, the environment is friendly, says HARID Conservatory faculty member Victoria Schneider, who serves on US Prix de Ballet's elite panel of judges. "The wellbeing of the dancer is the main focus," says Schneider, who awarded three scholarships to HARID at last year's competition.

US Prix de Ballet was born after its founders traveled to the Japan Grand Prix International Ballet Competition in 2016. "The company ran every aspect of the competition with professionalism, dignity, honor and precision," says founder Neisha Hernandez. "We knew we wanted this level of experience for America."

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