Carlisle, Pa. (November 8, 2010) – The internationally recognized ballet institution and performing company, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, is pleased to announce its selection of choreographers for ChoreoPlan 2011. Begun in 1998 under the direction of Alan Hineline, this program offers aspiring and working young choreographers the opportunity to create classically based works on a company of well-trained, classical dancers. ChoreoPlan 2011 is directed by CPYB principal faculty member Laszlo Berdo.
CPYB’s Founding Artistic Director Marcia Dale Weary and Berdo selected four choreographers from an international pool of applicants:
- Brian Enos of San Francisco, Ca., has been making dances since age 14 and has been described as “a wonder kid of contemporary ballet.” At age 18, while still a student in the Houston Ballet Academy, Enos was invited by Ben Stevenson, Officer of the Order of the British Empire (O.B.E.), to create his first work for The Houston Ballet. He has since gone on to create works for companies such as Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Ballet Met, DanceWorks Chicago, Ballet Austin II, Chicago Ballet and Hubbard Street 2. As a dancer, he has performed with The Houston Ballet as well as Hubbard Street Dance Chicago.
- Hazel Sabas-Gower was born in the Philippines, and received her primary training through the Royal Academy of Dance or RAD program. She danced with Ballet Philippines as principal dancer and has her master’ degree from NYU, Tisch School of the Arts. She has been Ballet Mistress with Ballet Memphis where she choreographed works including Dracula, Firebird and Deconstructing Gershwin. She also received critical acclaim in the Choreographic Competition Finals in Paris, France. Sabas-Gower has been the Artistic Director at Ballet Lubbock, Assistant Professor at UMass at Amherst, Lecturer at UNT and faculty at Texas Christian University and is faculty at Texas Ballet Theatre Academy. She has received numerous grants including a Fulbright scholarship.
- Avichai Scher started studying as a scholarship student at the School of American Ballet at the age of ten. As a child he appeared on stage with American Ballet Theater and Paris Opera Ballet. A desire to work with many different companies and choreographers took him on a journey dancing with ten different companies in six years. Scher always had the desire to be a choreographer and created his first piece in 2001 at age 16 for the SAB choreography workshop. He participated in three of those workshops, and also created two pieces for the Miami City Ballet Summer Program. His first professional commission came at age 18, creating Jouons for American Ballet Theater Studio Company. The same year he also choreographed The Perilous Night for Miami City Ballet. He went on to create many works for schools and junior companies and made his theater debut in 2008, choreographing the play Three Movements, which ran at NYC’s Theatre Row. In 2005, DANCE Magazine recognized his work by putting him in the “Top 25 To Watch.”
- Kelly Ann Sloan, a native of Bayonne, N.J., is currently dancing in her fifth season with the Los Angeles Ballet. She first started choreographing for the benefit show Beyond Ballet: Career Transition Fund for Cincinnati Ballet Artists, and was later commissioned to create a piece for Cincinnati Ballet’s 2005 New Works Festival. Since then, Sloan’s choreography has been shown at Ballet Builders in New York City, the Choreography Under the Stars Competition in Palm Desert, Calif., Pointeworks in Canton, Ohio, the Outlet Project in New Jersey, and Los Angeles Ballet’s new choreography showcase. After winning Island Moving Company’s choreography competition in 2008, she created a world premiere for the company’s summer season in Newport, RI. She has also been commissioned to create works for Claudia Rudolph Barrett’s Ballet tech Ohio, Ballet Indentity and the Patrick Notaro Dance Project.
Participants will spend 13 days (from Jan. 9-22; approximately 40 rehearsal hours) at CPYB’s Warehouse Studios in Carlisle creating works with the dancers. The program will culminate in two public performances at 3 and 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 22 at CPYB’s Warehouse Studios. Tickets are $5 at the door.
ChoreoPlan was initiated with a four-fold mission in mind:
- To create an opportunity for young, talented choreographers working in the classical genre
- To encourage the further development of classical choreography through the establishment of a low-pressure, non-competitive laboratory environment in which its developing practitioners can exercise and hone their craft
- To offer artistic directors, dance presenters and the dance community at large a single venue in which to view the work of a group of young, talented choreographers
- To educate the capital region audiences in the "how to's" of viewing new works, and in return, increase the size of the audiences for CPYB's repertory performances
Photographers and reporters are welcome to schedule time during ChoreoPlan 2011 rehearsals. Please call Bonnie Schulte at 717.245.1191 for more information.
MEDIA OPPORTUNITY: We invite the media to attend upcoming rehearsals and speak with the performers, choreographers and staff about the performances and ChoreoPlan program. For more information, please contact Bonnie Schulte at 717.245.1191 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Coverage opportunities of performances are also available and must be set up through Bonnie Schulte.
About Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet
Established in 1955 by Founding Artistic Director Marcia Dale Weary, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet is a nationally and internationally recognized school of classical ballet headquartered in Carlisle, Pa. Now in its 55th year, CPYB’s mission is to inspire, educate and enrich the lives of the students and the region through training in and the performance of classical ballet.
Laszlo Berdo, Director of ChoreoPlan 2011
Berdo was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he began dancing at the age of five. Berdo later intensified his studies at the National Academy of Arts in Champaign, Illinois. Upon graduation he joined Ballet Austin and then the Louisville Ballet under Alun Jones and Helen Starr. He was later hired by Ivan Nagy, first as a guest artist then later to be a soloist with the Cincinnati Ballet. Berdo then joined the Boston Ballet in 1990 as a corps de ballet member under Bruce Marks. He was then promoted to soloist in 1993 and to principal in 1995. He has danced numerous principal roles in ballets by Cranko, McMillan, Balanchine, Bournonville, Hynd and Stevenson. Berdo also excelled in contemporary works by Tharp, Taylor, Feld, Butler and York. Berdo is honored to be the first to perform the lead role in Cranko’s Eugene Onegin in the United States. He began choreographing in 1993, creating the pas de deux Eternal Being, which later was performed for a Boston Ballet gala. In 1997, Berdo was commissioned to create a new work for Boston Ballet. Four Hands premiered in March of 1998 and was performed in many venues such as the International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi and at a summer festival in Biarritz, France. In 1999, Berdo created Below Down Under, which premiered at the Schubert Theatre in February 1999. In March of 2001, he created Sanctuary for the Norwegian National Ballet in Oslo. He choreographed Bass Elements for The Boston Conservatory and participated in ChoreoPlan 2001, in which he created Concertante for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. Most recently, Berdo staged Four Hands for the Finnish National Ballet in Helsinki, which premiered in October of 2002 and Snow White for CPYB, which premiered in 2008. Berdo teaches in the United States and Europe for ballet companies, summer intensives and colleges. From 2000 to 2003 Berdo was a faculty member for The Boston Conservatory and Harvard University. Berdo has been with CPYB since 2000.