Roberta Senn grew up in Chicago, Illinois where she studied ballet with Edna MacRae, Richard Ellis and Bentley Stone. She made her debut in the NYCB Nutcracker when she was 13. Her first professional engagement in NYC was as a dancer in the original Broadway cast of Fiddler on the Roof where she worked with Jerome Robbins and Zero Mostel. She then went to Europe and danced in the Grand Theatre de Genève (Geneva Ballet), to Israel at the Israeli Classical Ballet and in Iran at the Iranian National Ballet, where she danced for the Shah of Iran and made an Argo-like escape when the revolution came.
She returned to the US and opened the Great Neck School of Dance in 1981 and founded the American Ballet Russe in 1991. Roberta has trained two generations of dancers including thousands of children, teens and adults. She is proud of the many students who have gone on to become professional dancers including the current crop, Ashley Hod (NYCB) and Isabella DeVivo (San Francisco Ballet). She also worked with figure skaters including Sarah Hughes (Olympic Gold Medalist 2002) and her sister Emily (Olympic Contender 2006). She is equally proud of all the beautiful human beings who have studied with her and benefited from ballet training. She also loves teaching adults her creation Ballet Body™ Barre, the original and real Barre Class. She has danced just about every major ballerina role in the classical repertory. Two of her special favorites are The Dying Swan in Israel and Kitri in Don Quixote on Long Island.
Roberta has a BA from the University of Chicago and an MA from Columbia University. She has had teachers’ training in the French Method (Paris Opera Ballet) and Bournonville Style (Royal Danish Ballet).
Tamara Babic has danced since she was 5. After graduating from the School of Classical Ballet in Zagreb, Croatia, she became a Corps de Ballet member of the Croatian National Theater in Zagreb, where she took performed in both classical and contemporary repertoire.
Tamara has been teaching dance for more than a decade and has never regretted trading the stage for the classroom, she believes she has found her true calling as a teacher.
She has a Master of Education degree from the University of Zagreb and is a qualified Ballet and Piano instructor. In 2010, she became a certified NYC Ballet Workout Instructor. Tamara is also an ABT® Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT ® Teacher Training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 5 of the ABT ® National Training Curriculum.
Tamara teaches Ballet and Piano classes in NYC and the Metropolitan Area. In her free time, Tamara dances Argentine tango and salsa, and is a Festival Relations Manager of the Salsa Beach Splash Festival in Croatia.
Jonathan Breton (Guest-Artist-in-Residence), originally from Saint Gervais la Forêt (France), first started dancing at L’école de danse Brigitte Wattellin in Blois, France, the Conservatoire National de Region d’Angers and later the L’école nationale de musique, de danse et d’art dramatique (ENDMA) de Bobigny He graduated from the Institut Supérieur des Arts de la Scène in Paris where he studied dance, singing and acting. Jonathan obtained his Diplôme d’État de professeur de danse – Examen d’Aptitude Technique (EAT) in Danse Classique in 2012 at the Paris Opèra before moving to New York to further his dance education at the Alvin Ailey School, and then at the Martha Graham School.
Jonathan performed in musicals including Cats, A Chorus Line, Les Misérables, Hairspray, Roméo and Juliette, and many original productions, and also with many dance companies, including Alison Cook Beatty Dance, Transcendance Group, Eryc Taylor Dance, Zion Dance Company, Footprints and Coyote Dancers.
He choreographed for la Compagnie de l’Etoile in France for 4 years, and currently choreographs for AZOTH Dance Theatre, a NYC based dance company which tours internationally. Jonathan has been performing, choreographing and teaching in 4 countries and he is currently an artist-in-residence at Ballet & Body in NYC.
Jonathan is a member of the International Dance Council CID at UNESCO, the official world-wide organization for dance in the world.
Shannon Grant is currently dancing with Ballet Long Island, Jersey City Ballet, Pink Pig Ballet and award winning choreographer Jamie Benson. She has performed throughout the United States and internationally with Ballet de Printemps, City Ballet of San Diego, Ballet New England, Media City Ballet, BalaSole, Ballet Magique, David Taylor Dance Theatre, Scottish American Ballet and others and originated a role in the Ovation Award winning musical Shag With a Twist. Shannon danced in music videos for Velvet Revolver, Avenged Sevenfold, Dame Fortune and other bands, as well as in commercials and fashion shows. She graduated from Columbia University with a BA in American Studies and also holds an Associate Degree with Honors in Business Administration. Shannon Grant loves sharing her knowledge of dance through teaching and has taught all over the New York tri-state area and in Los Angeles to dancers of all ages and abilities. Visit shannongrantdance.com for more.
Simon Kazantsev was born in Russia and attended the famous Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, where he successfully completed his dance training in 8 years. Upon graduation, he joined the Stanislavsky Ballet, one of Moscow’s leading companies. He toured internationally with that troupe, dancing solo roles in such classics as Giselle, Swan Lake, La Esmeralda, Le Corsaire, and the Nutcracker, as well as performing prominent roles in contemporary ballets. At the same time, he attended the Bolshoi Ballet Academy College, where he earned a BA in Pedagogy and Dancing and became an assistant to the late Professor Alexander Bondarenko, who was a leading authority on ballet technique and coach to many principal dancers of the Bolshoi Theater.
In 2003, Mr. Kazantsev came to the United States to join the Boston Ballet. In America, he discovered that his real passion was teaching.
Marcia Kresge began dance training in Binghamton, NY with Robert Christopher and Percival Borde. She has an Master’s in Dance from New York University. She choreographs original dance and has taught at the Brooklyn College Preparatory Center for the Performing Arts as well as the NYC Public Schools. She performed for 10 years as a soloist with the Freeman Repertory Dance Company and freelances as a modern dancer.
Marcia’s passion for dance and the arts has carried her into community service. For 6 years she led the new Biko Transformation Center in Bushwick, curated First Friday’s Live! a monthly multi-cultural arts forum for the community, taught ballet and stretch to children and adults, and currently coordinates the festivals for ARTsEastNY at its many outdoor venues including farmers’ markets, community gardens, village squares and the reclaimed space Mi Tierra.Read More
Marcia is committed to making dance accessible for all by inspiring students to find the fun and the relevance to life in technique and theater art, regardless of any professional aspirations.
Gisela Quinteros, a native from Argentina, began dance at age 8. At 12, she received a scholarship to study at Southwest Ballet Center in Houston,TX under William Martin-Viscount. At 14 she studied in Buenos Aires with Estela Erman and in 1994 received a scholarship to Conservatoire de Dreux in France. She studied with Director Georges Piletta, Joseph Lazzini, Olga Ferri and Enrique Lommi. In 1995, Pierre Lacotte invited her to join Ballet National de Nancy et Lorraine, (France) where she danced classical and neoclassical repertory until 2000 performing at Théâtre Champs Élysée, Palais du Festival de Cannes, Théâtre Lausanne, Festival De Spoleto, as well as touring to Finland, Russia (Bolshoi Theater), China and Brasil. In 1997, she graduated from the Conservatoire National de Music et Danse de Nancy and was awarded a Médaille de Vermeil. Since moving to NYC in 2001, she has danced for numerous choreographers including Lincoln Jones, Caron Eule, Kenny Larson, David Fernandez, Abel Costa, Amanda Selwyn, Erin Hunter, Westminster Ballet, Christopher Caines Dance Company, Douglas Dunn, Cornelius Brown’s Open Project, David Fernandez’s Some Dance Company and Benjamin Briones Ballet. In 2012, she began choreographing and she co-founded ENCOUNTERS Dance. Inspired with Edgar Peterson and presented performances at The Ailey Citigroup Theater and The Bowery Electric, as well as in the Gibney ShowDown Series. In 2013, she started a new collaboration with artist/sculptor David Rodriguez Caballero. In 2015, she founded Bonds Of Art, an ongoing project that shares special bonds created through art and movement cultivating collaborations between Spain, France and NYC. She is grateful to Kenny Larson, Zvi Gotheiner, Miro Magloire for all their teachings. She loves teaching at Ballet & Body Barre.
Osamu Uehara has a BA in Music/Theatre/Physics/Mathematics from Cornell University. After studying Dramatic Art at UC Berkeley, he received an MFA in Dance from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. His eclectic background includes the modern training of Viola Farber, Erick Hawkins and Lester Horton, Canadian Ballet Jazz, Ukrainian and Hungarian folk dance, contact work and improvisation, as well as Cecchetti, RAD, Balanchine and Vagonova ballet. He danced with numerous classical companies including Evansville Dance Theatre, Berkeley Ballet Theater, Berkeley Conservatory Ballet and for 10 years with New York Theatre Ballet where he was featured on the cover of Dancemagazine in 1990. He worked with numerous choreographers including Andrew Jannetti, Mark DeGarmo, Barry Martin, Wendy Osserman, Patricia Nicholson Parker, Sasha Spielvogel, as well as collaborating with Dancemagazine photographer Dave Fullard, Berlin based video artist Diego Agull and violinist Janice Martin. He has appeared in works of Kurt Joos, Anthony Tudor, Jose Limon, Anna Sokolow, Sophie Maslow, Ruby Shang, Glen Tetley, Robert North, Ohad Naharin and Kevin Wynn.
He studied Bournonville style and technique both in the US and Denmark, and was invited to teach Cecchetti Method and Bournonville repertory at the Compagnie de Dance Hallet-Eghayan in Lyons and the Academy of Performing Arts on Cape Cod. He currently teaches using the Paris Opera method (as taught by Gerard Sibritt and Serge Golovine) merged with the pedagogic method of Margaret Craske as a means of integrating the seemingly disparate ideas of Italian, Russian, Danish, English and American classical training along with American modern dance into an understandable continuum for students.Read More
He has also staged excerpts from Konservatoriet, Napoli, La Sylphide, Kermesse i Bruges, divertissements such as Paquita, Les Sylphides, Pas de Quatre; Ukrainian, Hungarian, Gypsy, and Central Asian folk dances and original productions of Nutcracker, Aladdin, Little Mermaid, Carnival of the Animals, Snow Queen, Firebird and Midsummer Night’s Dream. Trained as a musician and schooled in lighting and theatrical design, he also handles the costuming, music editing and technical requirements of his companies. He has provided costumes and properties not only for ABR, PAE, FDT and BernierDance, but also for Mark DeGarmo, Wendy Osserman, Kathryn Posin, and many others. Since being appointed writer for Chen & Dancers’ NEA/Advancement program in 1990, he has become increasingly involved in administration. Currently the grants liaison for PAE, he was also a co-curator and lighting designer for BernierDance’s annual CT Meets NY Dance Fest and Artists for Peace.
He feels privileged to have had the unique experience of studying with artists spanning 4 generations including Anton Dolin, Marina Svetlova, Anna Youskevitch, Vladimir Doukodovsky, Niels Bjorn Larssen, Martha Clarke, Robert Blankshine, Robert Denvers, Sallie Wilson, Allegra Kent, Nanette Glushak, John Prinz, Evee Lynn, Kirk Peterson, Dick Andros and Loren Hightower.