Company Dancers 2017-18


Chris Bloom is from Fredrick County, VA where he began dancing at the Blue Ridge Studio for the Performing Arts and the Vostrikov Academy of Ballet. Chris graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Ailey/Fordham B. F. A. Program in 2012. In 2011, he joined Parsons Dance as an apprentice and continued to perform with Parsons as a guest artist for two years while also dancing with Lydia Johnson Dance, Thang Dao Dance Company, VonUssar DanceWorks, 360° Dance Theatre and the Peridance Contemporary Dance Company. Chris joined Ballet Hispanico in 2013 and has had the pleasure of originating roles in new works by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Edgar Zendejas, Miguel Mancillas, Fernando Melo, Michelle Manzanales, Gustavo Ramírez Sansano, and Eduardo Vilaro. In addition, he has performed in Nacho Duato’s Jardi Tancat and as Don José in Gustavo Ramírez Sansano’s CARMEN.maquia.



Jared Bogart is originally from Crystal River FL, and recently graduated with a BFA in Dance from Jacksonville University. He spent his early years training at his parents’ dance school in Crystal River, FL. He has trained during the summers at the Orlando Ballet School, Archcore40, Florida Dance Masters, and Florida Dance Festival. While in Jacksonville, Jared worked with artists such as Jennifer Muller, Robert Moses, Jennifer Archibald, and Stephanie Martinez. Jared is very excited to start his first season with Ballet Hispánico.



Shelby Colona is a 2013 graduate of The Ailey School’s Certificate Program. In 2011, she graduated from The High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA) in Houston, TX. Shelby has had further training with Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Perry-Mansfield, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet. She has performed works by Robert Battle, Benoit-Swan Pouffer, Peter Chu, Nicholas Villeneuve, Billy Bell, Loni Landon, and has performed with companies such as Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Lunge Dance Collective, and BHdos before joining Ballet Hispánico.




Omar Román De Jesús began his formal training at School for the Performing Arts in Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. Omar was a member of Balleteatro Nacional de Puerto Rico from 2006-2011 and during this period, he won the Championship Cup and Gold Medal at the National Dance Competition in Puerto Rico. Omar's choreography has been recognized for its originality, and he has been praised for his ability to craft an emotional arc. He has presented his choreography at Baruch Performing Arts Center, Peridance Capezio Center, Sala Sinfónica Pablo Casals, Ailey Citigroup Theater, the 14 Street Y, The Joyce Theater and others. Omar has received awards from The Dance Gallery Festival and Reverb Dance Festival, and is thrilled to be a winning choreographer for the Joffrey Academy of Dance's 8th annual Winning Works Choreographic Competition. Additionally, he has been commissioned by Steps Repertory Ensemble, Instituto de Cultura de Puerto Rico, and recently, his new work, DANIEL, was commissioned by Parsons Dance for the company's 2017 Joyce season as part of its initiative to support emerging choreographers through David Parsons' GenerationNow Fellowship.           



Nick Fearon began dancing at the age of 10 in his hometown of San Antonio, Texas. Nick recently graduated from Point Park University earning his BFA in dance. At Point Park, Nick had the opportunity to perform works choreographed by David Parsons, Lar Lubovitch, Mark Morris, and Jose Limón. Since graduation, Nick was seen at Digifest dancing for Frankie Grande and has also danced professionally with Parsons Dance, Texture Contemporary Ballet, and Ballet Hispánico’s BHdos.



Melissa Fernandez is from Miami, FL and received her early training from Mencia-Pikieris School of Dance and New World School of the Arts where she graduated summa cum laude in 2008. In 2012, Melissa went on to earn her BFA in dance from The Juilliard School. Melissa has attended programs at American Ballet Theatre, Miami City Ballet, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, and Netherlands Dans Theater 2011, among others. In 2008, Melissa was selected as a modern dance Finalist in the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts (NFAA) YoungARTS competition. She was also
featured in the HBO series “Master Class.” Currently, Melissa is in her fifth season with Ballet Hispánico in New York City with whom she performs nationally and internationally as well as teaching workshops as part of their outreach initiatives. Melissa has also choreographed for and performed with the Peter London Global Dance Company in Miami, FL.




Mark Gieringer began dancing at the age of 16 in Bellevue, NE. He graduated cum laude from the University of Missouri – Kansas City with a dual-emphasis BFA in ballet and modern. He attended Joffrey - New York & Kansas City Ballet’s Summer Intensives on full scholarship. Mark has performed works by K.T Nelson, Josh Beamish, Bernard Gaddis, Gary Abbott and Ray Mercer. He performed principal roles in Antony Tudor's Dark Elegies and Continuo. Other roles include: Elegy Man in George Balanchine’s Serenade, and Puck in Benjamin Britten’s operatic setting of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Mark has performed professionally with Seamless Dance Theater and Owen/Cox Dance Group in Kansas City.



Jenna Marie began her dance training at Olga Kresin's Ballet School in Philadelphia, PA and later attended the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts. She trained at The Ailey School as a scholarship student and was a member of the dance company Eleone Connections. Ms. Marie has participated in a number of dance competitions including the Youth America Grand Prix (where she was featured in the documentary "First Position"), the Barcelona International Dance Competition, and the Tanzolymp Danz Festival. She was a member of Ailey II, Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company, Zest Collective, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, The Metropolitan Opera, and MOMIX.



Gabrielle Sprauve was born in Queens, New York and raised in Savannah, Georgia. She is a recent graduate of Marymount Manhattan College, where she earned her BFA in dance under the direction of Katie Langan. Gabrielle has performed works by Larry Keigwin, Alexandra Damiani, Norbert De La Cruz, Paul Taylor, Darrell Grand Moultrie, Adam Barruch, and Jo Strømgren. She has also performed at the American Dance Guild, the 92nd Street Y’s Fridays at Noon Series, and The Martha Graham Company’s University Partners Showcase. Gabrielle is honored and excited to be joining Ballet Hispánico in the upcoming season.                    



Eila Valls is originally from Spain and graduated from RCPD Mariemma (Madrid, Spain) in 2010. She is the winner of the "Virginia Valero" extraordinary award in Madrid and the first place winner of the international competition " Certamen de Danza Ciutat de Barcelona", through which she was awarded a full scholarship to the Peridance Certificate Program (NYC) and Joffrey Ballet (Chicago). Since she moved to New York in 2011, she’s had the privilege to work with Peridance Contemporary Dance Company, where she has performed repertory from choreographers such as Igal Perry, Dwight Rhoden, Ohad Naharin, and Sidra Bell, among others. She has also danced under the direction of Manuel Vignoulle, Brice Mousset and Yesid Lopez and has worked as a dancer/model for Adidas, Nike and Under Armour.




Dandara Veiga was a scholarship student at The Ailey School in 2016/2017. She started her dance training at Projeto Social Primeiros Passos (Brazil), before training as a scholarship student at Escola de dança Ballerina (Brazil), Studio Margarita Fernandez (Argentina), Opus Ballet (Italy), and Annarella Academia Dr Ballet e Dança (Portugal). Dandara has participated in dance festivals all around the world and received scholarships with San Francisco Ballet and Ballet West. She has performed at events such as Vibe Competition (Montana/US), Assamblé International (Toronto/Canada), Harlem Arts Festival, and the Ailey Spirit Gala (New York/US). She has had the opportunity to work with names such as Charla Gen, Robert Battle, Caridad Martinez, Claudia Zaccari, Jean Emille, Ray Mercer, Raul Candal, and Melanie Futorian.



Lyvan Verdecia was born in Havana, Cuba. He graduated from the National Ballet School of Cuba in 2013 and joined the ranks of the National Ballet of Cuba through December 2014, where he developed as a dancer and choreographer. He has had the opportunity to participate in festivals and has won gold and bronze medals at international competitions. He has shared the stage with Carlos Acosta in his Tocororo and with Viengsay Valdes in Annabelle Lopez Ochoa’s Celeste. In 2017, Verdecia was awarded a Princess Grace Award in Dance.



Diana Winfree grew up in Southlake, TX. She received her BFA from the University of Oklahoma, where she performed repertory by choreographers including Robert Battle, Martha Graham, and Alvin Ailey. Upon graduation, Diana danced three seasons with Thodos Dance Chicago where she premiered and toured works by KT Nelson, Lucas Crandall, and Anne Reinking. She most recently performed with local Chicago companies and artists such as LevelDance, Kristina Isabelle Dance Company, and Dance for Life Chicago.

Photos (c) Paula Lobo
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