Gabriel Figueredo in a variation from Raymonda. VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP.

Congratulations to the 2019 Youth America Grand Prix Winners

This week, over 1,000 young hopefuls gathered in New York City for the Youth America Grand Prix finals, giving them the chance to compete for scholarships and contracts to some of the world's top ballet schools and companies. Roughly 85 dancers made it to the final round at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater on Wednesday. Today, the 20th anniversary of YAGP came to a close at the competition's awards ceremony. Read on to find out who won!


Grand Prix Award Winner

Gabriel Figueredo in a variation from Raymonda

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

Gabriel Figueredo (18), John Cranko School, Germany

Senior Women

Grace Carroll in a variation from Paquita

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Grace Carroll (15), Tanya Pearson Academy, Australia

2nd Place: Yazmin Verhage (16), Ballettschule Theater Basel, Switzerland

3rd Place: Arianna Crosato Neumann (16), Danzaira Escuela Profesional de Ballet, Peru

Senior Men

Junsu Lee in a variation from Grand Pas Classique

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Junsu Lee (16), Korea National University of Art, South Korea

2nd Place: Francisco Gomes (15), Academia Annarella, Portugal

3rd Place: Joaquin Gaubeca (16), Cary Ballet Conservatory, Argentina

3rd Place: Harold Mendez (17), The Sarasota Cuban Ballet School, Cuba

Youth Grand Prix Winner

Darrion Sellman in a variation from Swan Lake

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

Darrion Sellman (14), Los Angeles Ballet Academy, CA, USA

Junior Women

Rebecca Alexandria Hadibroto in a variation from Harlequinade

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Rebecca Alexandria Hadibroto (12), Malrupi Dance Academy, Indonesia

2nd Place: Ava Arbuckle (14), Elite Classical Coaching, TX, USA

3rd Place: Madison Brown (13), Lents Dance Company, FL, USA

Junior Men

Misha Broderick in a variation from Diana and Acteon

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Misha Broderick (13), Master Ballet Academy, AZ, USA

2nd Place: Andrey Jesus (13), Bale Jovem de Sao Vicente, Brazil

3rd Place: Seungmin Lee (14), Sunhwa Arts Middle School, South Korea

Pre-Competitive Age Division Grand Prix

Corbin Halloway

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

Corbin Halloway (11), CityDance School and Conservatory, MD, USA

Pre-Competitive Age Division Women

Martha Savin

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Martha Savin (11), Dance Planet, Romania

2nd Place: Kseniya Koasva (11), Ballet School of Vezhnovets, Belarus

3rd Place: Natasha Furman (10), Not Your Ordinary Dancers, NJ, USA

Pre-Competitive Age Division Men

Matthis Laevens

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

1st Place: Matthis Laevens (10), Balletschool Raymonda, Belgium

2nd Place: Kai Sato (11), Y Ballet Academy, Japan

3rd Place: Aiden Johns (11), Indiana Ballet Conservatory, IN, USA

Special Awards

Joao Vitor da Silva in a variation from Coppélia

VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP

Shelley King Award for Excellence: Summer Duvyestyn (12), Classical Coaching Australia, Australia

Grishko Model Search Award: Ava Arbuckle (14), Elite Classical Coaching, TX, USA

Natalia Makarova Award for Artistry: Anastasia Poltnikova (17), Bolshoi Ballet Academy, Russia

Dance Europe Award: Gabriel Figueredo (18), John Cranko School, Germany

Mary Day Award for Artistry: Joao Vitor da Silva (15), Ballet Vortice, Brazil

Outstanding Choreographer Award: Maiko Miyauchi and Christina Bucci, Yarita Yu Ballet Studio, Japan

Outstanding Teacher Award: Mariaelena Ruiz, Cary Ballet Conservatory, NC, USA

For the full list of winners and the schools they represented, click here. Congratulations to all!

Latest Posts


Getty Images

The History of Pointe Shoes: The Landmark Moments That Made Ballet's Signature Shoe What It Is Today

Pointe shoes, with their ability to elevate a dancer both literally and metaphorically to a superhuman realm, are the ultimate symbol of a ballerina's ethereality and hard work. For students, receiving a first pair of pointe shoes is a rite of passage. The shoes carry an almost mystical allure: They're an endless source of lore and ritual, with tips, tricks and stories passed down over generations.

The history of pointe shoes reveals how a delicately darned slipper introduced in the 1820s has transformed into a technical tool that offers dancers the utmost freedom onstage today.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Getty Images

How Coming Back to Ballet After Years Away Has Saved Me During the Pandemic Shutdown

I was 4 years old when I took my first ballet lesson. My mom had dressed me in a pink leotard with matching tights, skirt and slippers. She drove me on a Saturday morning to a ballet academy in downtown Caguas, the town in Puerto Rico where I grew up. I don't remember much from the first lesson, but I do recall the reverence. My teacher Mónica asked the class if someone wanted to volunteer to lead. She was surprised I—the new girl—was the one to raise my hand.

I made up most of the steps, mimicking the ballerinas I had seen on TV and videos. At one point, Mónica stepped in and asked me to lead the class in a bow. I followed her directions and curtseyed in front of the mirror with one leg behind me and a gentle nod. I looked up to find myself in awe of what I had just done.

This was the same feeling I had when, after years away from dance, I finished my first YouTube ballet class at home in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
La'Toya Princess Jackson, Courtesy MoBBallet

Join Memoirs of Blacks in Ballet for Its 2020 Virtual Symposium

Memoirs of Blacks in Ballet, founded in 2015 by writer and activist Theresa Ruth Howard to preserve and promote the stories of Black ballet dancers, is offering three weekends of interactive education and conversation this month through its 2020 Virtual Symposium. The conference, titled "Education, Communication, Restoration," encourages participants to engage in candid discussions concerning racial inequality and social justice in ballet. While it is a space that centers on Blackness, all are welcome. Held August 14, 15, 21, 22 and 28, MoBBallet's second annual symposium will allow dancers to receive mentorship and openly speak about their personal experiences in a safe and empowering environment.

The first event, For Us By Us (FUBU) Town Hall, is a free community discussion on August 14 from 3:30–4:30 pm EDT via Zoom, followed by a forum for ballet leadership. The town hall format encourages active engagement (participants can raise their hands and respond in real time), but the registration invoice also contains a form for submitting questions in advance. The following discussions, forums and presentations include topics like company life as a Black dancer, developing personal activism, issues of equity and colorism in ballet companies, and more. Tickets range from free to $12 for each 60- to 80-minute event.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks