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Georgia Ballet’s Youth America Grand Prix Training Program Debuts with 23 at Atlanta Regionals

January 13, 2016

New School Director, georgia balletAshleyanne Hensley of The Georgia Ballet will be leading an exemplary group of students and instructors to the Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) Regional competitions January 21-24, 2016 at the Georgia Institute of Technology Ferst Center for the Arts. This group will be representing The Georgia Ballet’s new YAGP program implemented by Mrs. Hensley as a part of the school’s curriculum enhancement and expansion efforts.

“The Georgia Ballet is unique in this opportunity for hand-selected dancers from the School to work with 4 highly trained faculty, having over 55 years of combined professional careers and experience. This creates a very strong unified vision for technical mastery and artistry. Orlando Molina, Margit Peguero and Daet Rodriguez, studied and graduated from the National Ballet School of Cuba where the notoriety of their quality of dancers internationally is gaining huge appeal. We are proud to have s uch esteemed faculty in our inaugural year of The Georgia Ballet’s YAGP Training Program.” said Hensley.

georgia ballet1YAGP Atlanta will have Pre-competitive, Junior and Senior level age divisions. Dancers who place are then eligible to compete in the national competition held in New York City in April. Many highly noted professional dancers have had their careers launch with the opportunities awarded through participating in YAGP.

Mrs. Hensley and the Associate School Director, Orlando Molina, selected 23 students who exemplified advanced skills based upon age division, hard work, dedication and artistry. This program started with classes and rehearsals back in September and continued over the holidays. These students include: Mayuri Pradhan (9), Mia Crumly (10), Rachel Row (10), Lacy Kluck (10) and Andrew Wang (11) representing the Pre-Competitive Division students; Jessica Sullivan (12), Leanna Wagner (12), Koren LaPlant (12), Sonali Pradhan (13), Talina Rodriguez Peguero (13), Grace Rose (13), Emily Grace Fleck (13), Skylar Moton (13), Milner Patterson (13), Gwyneth Johnson (13), Claire Hensley (13) and Cameron Acree (14) representing the Junior Age Category; and Britta Albertson (15), Tessa Castellano (17), Kasey Hernandez (17) and Leiza Kelley (19) representing the Senior Division. The Ensemble piece includes all the students selected for YAGP and will be on stage Saturday night January 24 in the time slot of 4:15-6:30 at The Ferst Center on the Georgia Tech campus. These students have worked very hard for many months and have shown great progress.

gergia ballet2Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) is the world’s largest global network of dance. YAGP’s mission is to support and develop world-class dancers, ages 9-19, of all economic, ethnic, and geographic backgrounds by providing scholarship auditions, performance and education opportunities, and by serving as the global network of dance, connecting students, teachers, schools, dance companies, dancers, and audiences.  It fulfills its mission of dance education through scholarship auditions, master classes, alumni services, educational and outreach activities, performances, and films. YAGP aims to develop new audiences by bringing dance into mainstream culture. In 2010, it became the subject of First Position – an award-winning documentary which followed six YAGP participants on their journey to YAGP’s New York City Finals. In 2013, YAGP produced “Ballet’s Greatest Hits” – a filmed Gala performance showcasing excerpts from six of the most beloved classical ballets. Narrated by Nigel Lythgoe, the film combines live performances with exclusive behind-the-scenes interviews with dancers, historical background and rare archival footage.

The School of The Georgia Ballet is also proud to include the AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE® National Training Curriculum, a breakthrough 9 level program that combines high quality artistic training with the basics of dancer health and child development. The ABT® National Training Curriculum consists of a comprehensive set of age-appropriate, outcome-based guidelines to provide the highest quality of ballet training to dance students of all ages and skill levels.

To register for summer intensive auditions and master class (February 6, 2016) with Milwaukee Ballet’s School/ 2nd Company Director, Rolando Yanes, and find more information, visit or call 770-528-0881.


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