Your July Roster Roundup: Dancers and Directors on the Move

July 5, 2024

The past few weeks have brought another exciting round of dancer career news—check out the latest farewells, appointments, promotions, and more in this month’s ballet roster roundup.

Promotions and Appointments

Chloe Misseldine was promoted to principal onstage following her debut of Odette/Odile in American Ballet Theatre’s performance of Swan Lake on July 3.

Chloe Misseldine performs the Black Swan variation onstage. She plies in arabesque derriere, arms extended, with a sly smile. She wears a black pancake tutu with jewels.
Chloe Missledine as Odile in Swan Lake. Photo by Emma Zordan, courtesy American Ballet Theatre.

The Royal Ballet has announced several company promotions. Calvin Richardson and Joseph Sissens have been promoted to principal; Lukas B. Brændsrød, Annette Buvoli, Leticia Dias, Leo Dixon, Joonhyuk Jun, Sae Maeda, and Mariko Sasaki to first soloist; Sophie Allnatt, Liam Boswell, Daichi Ikarashi, Joshua Junker, Chisato Katsura,and Francisco Serrano to soloist; Madison Bailey, Brayden Gallucci, Viola Pantuso, Sumina Sasaki, and Marianna Tsembenhoi to first artist; and Bethany Bartlett, Sierra Glasheen, Caspar Lench, Isabella Shaker, and Blake Smith to artist.

At National Ballet of Canada, Tirion Law has been promoted to principal; Hannah Galway to first soloist; and Emerson Dayton, Keaton Leier, and Issac Wright to second soloist.

Marlen Fuerte Castro of Ballet de l’Opéra National du Capitole was promoted to étoile following the conclusion of the company’s last performance in the 2023–24 season, Toiles Étoiles.

Miami City Ballet’s Mayumi Enokibara was promoted to soloist after nine seasons with the company.

At Ballet Idaho, Justin Hughes has been promoted to principal; Anissa Bailis, Cydney Covert, and John Frazer to soloist; and Flynn Ericson to company artist for the 2024–25 season.

Apprentices Michael Duncan and Mikell Graf have been promoted to company dancer at Richmond Ballet.

Louisville Ballet studio company member Caleb Emory has been promoted to company member.

At Indianapolis Ballet, apprentices Jane Gordon, Journie Kalous, and Logan O’Neal have been promoted to the company.

Terminus Ballet Theater protégé Amalie Chase has been promoted to company dancer.

At South Carolina Ballet (formerly Columbia City Ballet), Nicole Millwood and Joshua Van Dyke have been promoted to principal, and Gabrielle Gardner and Amanda Hwang to soloist.

City Ballet of San Diego apprentices Annette Darren and Chiara Valle have been promoted to the main company.

Remi Wörtmeyer leans on a wall-mounted ballet barre and poses for a headshot in a navy blue suitjacket.
Remi Wörtmeyer. Photo by Jennifer Zmuda, courtesy BalletMet.

On June 13, BalletMet announced that Remi Wörtmeyer will be the company’s new artistic director, following the departure of Edwaard Liang. Wörtmeyer joins the company after 14 years at the Dutch National Ballet, where he served as principal dancer, choreographer, costume designer, and academy teacher.

The Royal Ballet School has announced the appointment of RBS alumnus and former Birmingham Royal Ballet principal Iain Mackay to artistic director.

Oliver Till has been selected as the new Kansas City Ballet School director, effective July 1.

Beginning this August, Dmitri Kulev and Jennifer Kulev, founders of the Dmitri Kulev Classical Ballet Academy in California, will join the School of Nashville Ballet as the new school directors. 

Los Angeles’ The Colburn School has announced that choreographer, teacher, and former New York City Ballet principal Janie Taylor has been named artistic director of the Trudl Zipper Dance Institute.

Farewells, Guestings, and New Arrivals

Soloist David Yudes has departed The Royal Ballet after 10 years with the company. He will move to his hometown of Barcelona, Spain, to direct his mother’s dance school, Escola de Dansa Marisa Yudes.

After 21 years with the National Ballet of Canada, first soloist Jordana Daumec gave her last performance in George Balanchine’s “Rubies” on June 22.

Jordana Daumec holds a bouquet of roses as she takes her final curtain call after performing George Balanchine's "Rubies."
Jordana Daumec’s final curtain call after performing George Balanchine’s “Rubies.” Photo by Bruce Zinger, courtesy National Ballet of Canada.

On June 1, Northern Ballet premier dancer Abigail Prudames took her final bow after dancing Juliet in Romeo & Juliet.

Longtime Milwaukee Ballet dancer Itzel Hernandez gave her final performances with the company during its run of Cinderella this spring.

After 14 years with Boston Ballet, company artist Ekaterine Chubinidze has retired from the stage.

Ballet West demi-soloist Olivia Gusti took her final bow with the company on June 8.

Colorado Ballet bids farewell to Alexander Roy, who aims to pursue a career in arts administration while completing his degree at the University of Massachusetts.

Asia Bui, formerly with The Sarasota Ballet and Houston Ballet, has taken her last bow with Oregon Ballet Theatre.

On June 11, National Ballet of Canada and San Francisco Ballet announced that NBoC principal Harrison James will perform as a principal with both companies during the 2024–25 seasons.

Sasha De Sola and Isaac Hernández perform the Black Swan pas de deux onstage.
Sasha De Sola and Isaac Hernández in Helgi Tomasson’s Swan Lake. Photo by Lindsay Thomas, courtesy San Francisco Ballet.

San Francisco Ballet principal Isaac Hernández has departed the company following the expiration of his contract on July 1. Hernández joined SFB in 2022 in conjunction with the appointment of Tamara Rojo, his wife, as artistic director. Rojo will continue her role leading the company.

Houston Ballet welcomes nine new dancers: SFB principal Angelo Greco, Semperoper Ballett Dresden principal Julian Lacey and coryphée Rodrigo Pinto, Washington Ballet company dancers Brittany Stone and Alexa Torres, plus apprentices Eli Go, Remie Goins, Kaito Matsuoka, and Saela Rivera-Martinez.

Former Houston Ballet principal Melody Mennite and Ava Makana Dempster are joining Vitacca Ballet as company artists.

After 11 years with The Royal Ballet, soloist Gina Storm Jensen will join The Norwegian National Ballet for the upcoming season. Jensen, an Oslo native, spent the last year as a guest dancer with Norwegian National.

Royal Ballet School graduate Tia Wenkman is joining the Royal Swedish Ballet’s corps de ballet for the company’s 2024–25 season.

BalletX has announced the launch of year-round contracts for its company dancers, starting in mid-August 2024. The company will welcome six new dancers, including Mathis Joubert and Cincinnati Ballet first soloist Minori Sakita, corps dancer Luca De-Poli, and second company dancer Eileen Kim.

Gina Storm Jensen wears a long, white romantic white and flies through the air, suspended in an attitude derriere saute.
Gina Storm Jensen as Myrtha in Giselle. Photo by Andrej Uspenski, courtesy The Royal Ballet.

The new South Africa–based Cape Ballet Africa has announced its inaugural roster: Kingsley Beukes, Camille Bracher, Mia Coomber, Quinton Jacobs, Jan Kotze, Nicolas Laubscher, Julia O’Keeffe, Gabriel Ravenscroft, Kayla Schultze, Nina Simpson, Gemma Trehearn, and Joshua Williams.

At Ballet Idaho, former company member Leonardo Gonzalez is returning for the 2024–25 season. The company also welcomes new dancers Cameron Pelton, Isichel Perez Rivero, and Quinn Bates.

Nashville Ballet welcomes Boston Ballet Graduate Program alumnus Jack Owen to the company.

Joel Morin-Kensicki and Indianapolis Ballet’s Nicholas Bentz are joining Louisville Ballet as company members.

Indianapolis Ballet welcomes Avery Ward of New Orleans Ballet Theatre and Gabriela Gutierrez to the company.

Robert Steven Mack of Indianapolis Ballet will join City Ballet of San Diego for the upcoming season.

Camilo Herrera returns to South Carolina Ballet as a principal. The company also welcomes 10 new company dancers: Emily Bartee, Benjamin Drinkwater, Bella Leone, Miranda Montes de Oca, Patrick Odlum, Taylor Petrowski, C’Jae Ransom, Kamaria Roberson, Angelic Solis, and Virginia Welsh.

After 48 years with National Ballet of Canada, senior répétiteur and former first soloist Peter Ottmann has retired from the company.

New American Ballet Theatre principal Chloe Misseldine is joining State Ballet of Georgia as a guest artist to perform Odette/Odile during its run of Swan Lake in London August 28–September 8.

Awards and Recognitions

King Charles III of the UK has knighted Wayne McGregor in his 2024 Birthday Honours List for McGregor’s contributions to dance.  

Sir Wayne McGregor, shown waist-up, wears a sport zip-up with stripes down the sleeves. He rests his hands on his hips, body facing sideways, as he turns his head to peer into the camera pensively.
Sir Wayne McGregor. Photo by Pål Hansen, courtesy Gillian McVey Communications.

William Forsythe is one of three recipients of the 2024 Kyoto Prize, an international award from Japan presented to individuals who have made significant contributions in the fields of science, technology, arts, and philosophy.

New York City Ballet principal Chun Wai Chan received the Dance Ambassador Award at the 2024 Battery Dance Festival.

Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Derek Brockington has been named one of the 2024 Crain’s New York Business 20 in Their 20s” business professionals. Brockington has been recognized for his dance performance, social media work, and community engagement ventures for DTH.

The Royal Ballet principals William Bracewell and Fumi Kaneko have been recognized by National Dance Awards for Best Male Dancer and Best Female Dancer, respectively.

The Sarasota Ballet artistic director Iain Webb was awarded the 2024 British National Dance De Valois Award for Outstanding Achievement.

Texas Ballet Theater principal and choreographer Alexandra F. Light was an editor’s pick for Best Actor/Performer in Fort Worth magazine’s “Best of Fort Worth 2024.”

Fort Wayne Ballet has won a silver and a bronze Telly Award for its televised dance production Dancer’s Legacy: Edward Stierle, created in partnership with PBS Fort Wayne. FWB won silver for the program itself and bronze for a promotional short made to accompany it.