Jennifer Kuhn is originally from the North Bay area of San Francisco. She is honored to be in her fifth season as a principal artist with Ballet Ariel. She began her formal training with the Marin Ballet, studied with Joffrey Ballet in New York, Richmond Ballet, Ballet West, and Alonzo King’s Lines Contemporary Ballet. She attended the University of Utah on scholarship, receiving her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and Master of Fine Arts degree with a teaching and choreography emphasis. Ms. Kuhn has performed with Utah Ballet, Montgomery Ballet, Boulder Ballet, 7 Dancers, Jayne Persch’s Briah Danse, Zikr Dance Ensemble, and numerous independent projects. Ms. Kuhn was a principal dancer for many years with Dawson/Wallace Dance Project, formerly David Taylor Dance Theatre where she also served as a Rehearsal Director and Répétiteur. She enjoys being a muse in the creation of contemporary and traditional ballets and collaborating with choreographers and artists. Ms. Kuhn is honored to have the opportunity to perform classical roles as well as original works with Ballet Ariel. Some of her favorites include Cinderella, Lise in La Fille Mal Gardee, Sugar Plum Fairy and Clara in Nutcracker, wife in Appalachian Spring, Princess Aurora in Sleeping Beauty, and Simone in Ballet Ariel’s original work Ballerinas by Degas.
Angela Lisa Fiorini
Angela Lisa Fiorini is happy to dance with Ballet Ariel for her fourth season, as well as to share her love of Pilates, teaching in the Denver area. Angela Lisa spent the 2014/2015 season co-founding Nashville Dance Initiative, a dancer directed professional ballet company. She also spent two seasons performing professionally with Dance Theatre of Tennessee in Nashville. She received the Ruth DeYoung Kohler Scholarship for Arts Excellence and attended the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati, where she graduated in the spring of 2013 with a BFA in Classical Ballet and a Minor in Communication. While a student at CCM, Angela Lisa had the opportunity to perform professionally with Dance Theatre of TN, Dayton Ballet, and Tevlin Ballet. In addition, she spent a season teaching on staff at the Milwaukee Ballet School & Academy and training with he company. Originally from Wisconsin, Angela Lisa trained on full scholarship with the Milwaukee Ballet Academy after receiving the Schomer Lichtner Award. While training with MB, Angela Lisa performed annually in Michael Pink’s The Nutcracker. She spent summers training with Atlanta Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and Milwaukee Ballet, while her earliest training began with Pat Keller, Sue Darrow and Jean Wolfmeyer.
Chloey Hillerman grew up in Colorado and started taking ballet classes at the late age of 15. She has studied at various schools around Colorado, but completed most of her training at Denver Ballet Theatre Academy, where she graduated. Chloey has also spent summers at Next Generation Ballet, Kirov Academy of Ballet, Colorado Ballet, and Oklahoma City Ballet. At Denver Ballet Theatre Academy she has gained performance experience dancing in full length ballets such as Nutcracker with the role of Clara, and Coppelia as the role of Prayer Variation and Scottish Doll. During her year in Colorado Ballet’s Pre-Professional Program she also got the opportunity to perform in the Snowflake corps with the company during the Nutcracker. Chloey is excited to dance with Ballet Ariel for a second season!
Ariel Gilliam began her dance training when she was 8 years old at the school of Ballet Ariel. She has also studied at Classic Dance Academy, the school of Ballet Nouveau Colorado (now Colorado Conservatory of Dance) and Kim Robards Dance. Ariel graduated high school in 2013 and immediately joined Ballet Ariel as an apprentice for one year before being promoted to the company. Since joining the company, she has been given the opportunity to perform several soloist roles including Pas De Trois in Paquita, the Winter Fairy in Cinderella, and the title role in Rikki-Tikki-Tavi. She is also a dancer with Ballet 5280; a new ballet company based in Denver. Ariel is happy to be joining Ballet Ariel for her sixth season.
Jessica Mariner is originally from Chicago, IL. She began dancing at an early age and trained at Dmitri Roudnev School of Ballet, Salt Creek Ballet and at the Studio Company of Ballet Chicago. While a student, she was given the opportunity to perform exciting ballets such as Serenade, Concerto Barocco, and Giselle. She then continued her education at the University of Utah, obtaining a B.F.A in Ballet Performance. While at the university, she danced with the performing company Utah Ballet. After graduation, she began her professional career dancing as an apprentice with Ballet Nebraska and then joined Missouri Ballet Theatre as a company artist performing corps de ballet and soloist roles in Nutcracker, Cinderella and new contemporary works. Since joining Ballet Ariel, Jessica has had the opportunity to be a demi-soloist in La Fille Mal Gardee, Stepsister in Cinderella, Diamond Fairy in Sleeping Beauty as well as several other featured roles. She is very excited to be returning for her third season at Ballet Ariel.
Keegan O’Brien graduated Summa Cum Laude from Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology – Exercise Science. Always looking to increase his experience with different types of exercise, he began taking ballet – and immediately fell in love. In 2010, he started dancing with Corpus Christi Concert Ballet, where he was fortunate enough to be able to perform in the annual Young Tanzsommer festival held in throughout Austria – twice! As a personal trainer and dancer, Keegan developed his own exercise program – BodybuildingBallet – to combine his passions for fitness and dance. Implementing his program, Keegan was awarded first place in novice, and second place in the overall physique categories at the annual MuscleMania Mile High competition.
Madison Oleson from Denver, CO. I started taking classes at Mattie Springfield’s in Park Hill in 1999 and continued there as it changed ownership to Brian Bender’s The Dancer’s Advantage through high school in 2011. In high school I attended the Pittsburgh Summer Intensive in 2008, ABT Alabama Summer Intensive in 2009, and The Dance Theatre of Tennessee’s Summer Intensive in 2011. Then she moved to Nashville to dance with The Dance Theatre of Tennessee for three seasons. This past year she has performed with Park Hill Dance Academy as a guest artist and taught in their academy. This is her second season with Ballet Ariel.
Callie Peterson is from St. Paul, MN and began her training at age six with St. Croix Ballet. She continued her professional training throughout high school with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School Professional Division on scholarship and St. Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists. She has spent summers training with the Kansas City Ballet, Kirov Academy of Ballet, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, The School at Jacob’s Pillow Ballet Program, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet. In 2015, she graduated from Butler University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Dance and Arts Administration. Prior to Ballet Ariel, she danced professionally for Eisenhower Dance in Detroit, MI and The Big Muddy Dance Company in St. Louis, MO. Callie is thrilled to be returning to Ballet Ariel for her second season.
Melissa Pite began performing at the age of six in Boulder, Colorado. She started her formal ballet training at the Boulder Ballet School in 2003, where she resided until she graduated from Boulder High School in 2010. With Boulder Ballet, Melissa performed in numerous productions including the Nutcracker, Cinderella, Marry Poppins, and Pepito. She additional received summer training from the Joffrey Ballet and the Briansky Ballet. She then continued her education at University of Utah Ballet Department where she had many performing opportunities including works with Val Caniparoli and Carol Iwasaki. In 2012, Melissa transferred to Colorado State University where she enjoyed performing in Swan Lake, Pas de Quatre, the Nutcracker, Etudes, student, faculty, and guest artist performances. In 2015, Melissa graduated from CSU where she studied Dance and Human Nutrition. Melissa then joined Ballet Ariel and has performed in many featured roles including Cinderella, Les Sylphides, Pas de Quatre, the Nutcracker, Paquita, Appalachian Spring, and Ballerinas by Degas. Melissa is excited to continue in her fourth season at Ballet Ariel.
Bridget Polei was trained in the Cecchetti method as well as modern and jazz at The Ballet Conservatory in Lewisville, Texas and danced with their pre-professional ballet company LakeCities Ballet Theatre. There she performed in full length classical ballets and had the opportunity to perform the Balanchine works Serenade and Concerto Barocco staged by Shawn Stevens. Bridget trained summers at PNB, ABT, Houston Ballet, Colorado Ballet, and Joffery. She then went on to graduate from the University of Oklahoma in their highly renown Ballet program, and got an additional degree in Health and Exercise Science. While at OU she performed in ballets such as Raymonda, La Bayadere, Firebird, Onegin, and in other university Opera and Musical Theatre productions. Her choreography “Migration” was chosen to be presented at OU’s Young Choreographer’s Showcase, a production entirely of student choreography. She was also a university teaching assistant for courses in World Dance and Understanding Dance. After graduation Bridget received a company contract for Ballet Quad Cities in Illinois. She was given solos and leading roles such as the swan duckling in The Ugly Duckling, the chinese solo in The Nutcracker, and the white rabbit in Alice and Wonderland. Bridget is excited to start with Ballet Ariel this year in addition to teaching and working at Assemble Dancewear.
Jose Mario Chicas Chanduvi
Jose Mario Chicas Chanduvi was born in Montreal, QC and moved to Plattsburgh NY in 1997. Jose has always had a desire to dance. At the age of seven he began training and performing as a dancer with the Langlois Racine Dance School; beginning with tap, jazz and ballroom. In the summer of 2006 he began his training in ballet with the Adirondack Dance Company where he has been in several productions such as The Degas Ballet, Swan Lake, Les Patineurs, Snow White, The Little Mermaid and more. He has also been in The Nutcracker for the North Country Ballet Ensamble dancing roles such as The Nutcracker, Mouse Major, Russian, Chinese and Party Dad. Jose graduated from Plattsburgh High School in the spring of 2009, going on to attend Genesee Community College, where he later became a Choreographer for the Genesee Cheer and Dance teams. Jose was also named Solo National Grand Champion in the U.S finals in Myrtle Beach, SC in the dance category while attending GCC. Jose has also trained at Steps On Broadway in New York City, Royal Dance Theatre in Buffalo NY and has learned more dance styles such Modern, Contemporary and Acro. Jose moved to Colorado this year and is excited to join Ballet Ariel as a company member for his first season.
“Keston Meyer grew up in Pocatello, Idaho and began his ballet training at the age of 15. He trained extensively with the late Ballet Master Marius Zirra until his passing in 2004. He later trained with The Brindusa-Moore Ballet Academy, as well as Summer Gold, Richard d’Alton, Edward Ellison, Constantin Apetri and Ballet Master Sir Florin Brindusa. He has been fortunate to study with Houston Ballet, Richmond Ballet, International Ballet of Houston, and Salzburg Ballet. He has worked as an Apprentice with Eugene Ballet, touring throughout the pacific-northwest, and as an Apprentice with Ballet Idaho. In 2011, Keston joined Teatul de Balet Sibiu, in Sibiu Romania where he performed in productions by Andrei Litvinov, Sergiu Anghel, Pavel Rotaru, Davis Robertson, Vasile Petrutiu, Mihai Babuska, Alexandru Fotescu, Oleg Danovski, Russell Hewey, Iancu Ovidiu Matei, and Aleisha Sibhoun Gardner; along with tours to Hungary, Italy, Sicily, U.S.A, and throughout Romania. In 2013 Keston was promoted to soloist, dancing roles in Nutcracker, Sleeping Beatuty, Le Corsaire, and Principle roles in Gardner’s Four Seasons and 9Pasi, Sergiu Anghel’s Missa Prophana, La Vivandiere, Swan Lake and many others. In 2014, Keston began testing his skills in choreography with his first full length show Through the Night, and later, the comical Ballet ‘The Briefcase’ and Vizual in TBS’s production of Simțuri. In 2017, Keston joined Wonderbound, performing roles in Garrett Ammon’s Celestial Navigation, Snow, Aphrodite’s Switchboard, and Sarah Tallman’s Away with the Fairies to name a few. Keston is excited to start his first season with Ballet Ariel.
Marcelina Lancaster is originally from Miami, Florida. She began training at the early age of four at South Florida Ballet. From there she moved on to Miami City Ballet where she trained for a year before moving to Colorado. In Colorado she continued her training at Colorado Ballet for about five years. Marcelina has also spent summers at Miami City Ballet, Colorado Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet. During her two years in Colorado Ballet’s Pre Professional Program she had the opportunity to perform in the Snowflake Corps with the company during The Nutcracker. Marcelina is excited to begin her first season at Ballet Ariel!