Jump to content
This Site Uses Cookies. If You Want to Disable Cookies, Please See Your Browser Documentation. ×

2022-2023 Promotions (PNB)

Recommended Posts

And the press release just came through:


PNB Artistic Director Peter Boal Announces Three Promotions at CARMINA BURANA Opening Night.

September 23, 2022 – Seattle, WA – “It gives me great pleasure to be able to promote three dancers in our company this evening.” Following the curtain-raiser performance of George Balanchine’s Allegro Brillante on opening night of Pacific Northwest Ballet’s 50th Anniversary season, PNB Artistic Director Peter Boal announced to the audience that soloists James Kirby Rogers, Jonathan Batista, and Cecilia Iliesiu have been promoted to Principal dancers.

Each promoted dancer is currently featured in CARMINA BURANA, running through October 2. (Streaming digitally October 6 – 10.) For casting information, visit PNB.org/season/carmina-burana. 

“Just one year ago, James Kirby Rogers performed with PNB for the very first time,” said Mr. Boal, after bringing him out in front of the curtain. “After his memorable debut in Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven opposite Christopher D’Ariano, there was a significant buzz in the lobby as everyone wondered who the new hire was. Over the course of the past season, James has approached each role with remarkable curiosity and commitment. His Tybalt in Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Roméo et Juliet, bristling with emotion and physicality, offered a primer in acting, while his Siegfried in Kent Stowell’s Swan Lake cemented a tender partnership with Lesley Rausch as Odette/Odile. His technique is fearless, his generosity to those around him runs deep, and his commitment to perfection has him in the studio long after the rehearsal day is done. Please join me in congratulating James on his promotion to Principal dancer.”

Mr. Boal then brought Jonathan Batista to the stage. “Jonathan Batista, originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, was informed of the merits of Pacific Northwest Ballet by former Principal dancer, Karel Cruz. Jonathan joined us as a soloist only one year ago. His exuberance for contemporary and classical dance is evidenced every time he steps on stage. His joy of movement and commitment to character has audiences cheering and online fans fawning. At home in the works of Alejandro Cerrudo, Twyla Tharp, Ulysses Dove, and George Balanchine, Jonathan holds a passion for the new, and a desire to explore the unknown. His wonderfully matched partnership with Angelica Generosa offers both bond and bravura. Beyond the stage, Jonathan is devoted to funding and inspiring young dancers in his native Brazil and worldwide. Let us applaud Jonathan on his well-deserved promotion to Principal dancer.”

Finally, Mr. Boal spoke about Ms. Iliesiu. “I had the pleasure of teaching CC when she was just eleven years old at the School of American Ballet. She was an open-minded and eager student. Much to my surprise, she auditioned for PNB many years later when she was a soloist with Carolina Ballet. She has never lost her quest to learn and grow as a dancer, performer, and person, and it is her unwavering work ethic and unquenchable curiosity that has allowed her to blossom as an individual. CC is capable of technical feats and athletic prowess, but it is the tenderness she brings to works like Donald Byrd’s Love and Loss, opposite Dylan Wald, and the sweetness of her Sugar Plum Fairy opposite Cavalier, Dammiel Cruz-Garrido, that reveal a level of humanity defining of this artist. Devoted to compassion and empowerment as a mentor, advocate, coach, and teacher, CC is a role model to many and an inspiration to all. Join me in celebrating Cecilia Iliesiu’s promotion to Principal.”

Prior to opening night, PNB has also hired Audrey Malek to join the corps de ballet, and five apprentices from the ranks of the PNB School’s Professional Division – Luca Anaya, Dylan Calahan, Rosalyn Hutsell, Larry Lancaster, and Destiny Wimpye. PNB congratulates all of our newly promoted and hired dancers!

Link to comment



Jonathan Batista (he/him) is from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. He trained on scholarship at the English National Ballet and attended summer courses at Miami City Ballet and The Royal Ballet School on scholarship. He joined the National Ballet of Canada as an apprentice in 2012 before joining Boston Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2013. In 2016, he joined Cincinnati Ballet as a soloist and in 2017, Oklahoma City Ballet as a principal. Jonathan joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a soloist in 2021.

 Jonathan has danced leading roles in George Balanchines The Nutcracker® (Cavalier, Candy Cane); Alejandro Cerrudo’s One Thousand Pieces; Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven; Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Roméo et Juliette (Tybalt); Crystal Pite’s Plot Point; Kent Stowell’s Swan Lake (Prince Sigfried); Twyla Tharp’s Brief Fling and Waiting at the Station; and Robyn Mineko Williams’s Before I Was. While at Boston Ballet, Jonathan performed featured roles in George Balanchine’s Emeralds (Pas de Trois), Harold Lander’s Études (Mazurka), and Marius Petipa’s La Bayadère (Golden Idol). At Oklahoma City Ballet, he danced leading and featured roles in Balanchine’s The Four Temperaments (Phlegmatic); August Bournonville’s La Sylphide (James); Robert Joffrey’s Pas des Déesses; Jiří Kylián’s Petite Mort; Robert Mills Romeo & Juliet (Mercutio), Swan Lake (Siegfried), The Firebird (Prince Ivan), The Nutcracker (Cavalier), The Little Mermaid, and The Means To Fly; Helen Pickett's Petals (Jonah); Caetano Soto’s Adam; and Septime Webre’s ALICE (in wonderland).

Jonathan was a Gold Medalist at the 2008 Grand Prix Brazil, a 2010 Prix de Laussane Finalist, and a Silver Medalist at the World Ballet Competition in 2013.


Cecilia Iliesiu (she/her) is from New York, New York. She studied at the School of American Ballet, and with Francois Perron and Deborah Wingert at Studio Maestro. She attended summer courses at Boston Ballet School, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Chautauqua Institute, San Francisco Ballet School, and William Forsythe’s ART of workshop under Kathryn Bennetts. Cecilia joined Carolina Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2009 and was promoted to soloist in 2014. She joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2015, and was promoted to soloist in 2020.

Cecilia has danced leading roles in George Balanchine’s Agon, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Helena, Hippolyta), George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® (Sugar Plum Fairy, Hot Chocolate, Coffee, Dewdrop), and Rubies; Alejandro Cerrudo’s One Thousand Pieces and Silent Ghost; David Dawson’s Empire Noir; Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven and Red Angels; William Forsythe’s New Suite and One Flat Thing; Ronald Hynd’s The Sleeping Beauty (Fairy of Wit); Alonzo King’s The Personal Element; Jessica Lang’s Ghost Variations; José Limón’s The Moor’s Pavane; Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Cendrillon and Roméo et Juliette (Lady Capulet, Rosaline); Benjamin Millepied’s 3 Movements and Appassionata; Matthew Neenan’s Bacchus; Crystal Pite’s Emergence; Jerome Robbins’ The Concert; Price Suddarth’s Signature; Kent Stowell’s Carmina Burana, Cinderella (Stepmother, Autumn, Winter), and Swan Lake (Persian, Solo Swan, Spanish Dance); Twyla Tharp’s Afternoon Ball and Waiting at the Station (Golden Girl); and Christopher Wheeldon’s Tide Harmonic. She originated leading roles in Donald Byrd’s Love and Loss and Untitled, Jessica Lang’s Her Door to the Sky, Nia-Amina Minor’s And yet here we are, Amanda Morgan’s This Space Left Intentionally Blank, Eva Stone’s F O I L, and Price Suddarth’s The Intermission Project. At Carolina Ballet, Cecilia danced leading and featured roles in George Balanchine’s Brahms-Schoenberg Quartet, The Four Temperaments, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Rubies; Marius Petipa’s Giselle; Jerome Robbins’ Fancy Free; Christopher Stowell’s Rite of Spring; and Robert Weiss’ Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake. She also originated numerous roles in ballets by Zalman Raffael and Robert Weiss.

 In 2018, Cecilia choreographed A Meditation for NEXT STEP. In 2022, she was featured in Dance Magazine, Dance Teacher Magazine, and traveled to Nigeria to perform and lead a five-day teaching workshop. Cecilia holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications and Media Studies from Fordham University. Her degree was funded in part by Second Stage, PNB’s career transition program for dancers.


James Kirby Rogers (he/him) is from San Francisco, California. He trained at the North Carolina School of the Arts, where he was a YAGP finalist in 2014. He attended summer courses at San Francisco Ballet and Houston Ballet. James joined Houston Ballet II in 2015 and Kansas City Ballet in 2016. He joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a soloist in 2021.

James has danced leading roles in George Balanchine’s Diamonds and George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker® (Cavalier, Herr Drosselmeier); Ulysses Dove’s Dancing on the Front Porch of Heaven; Alonzo King’s The Personal Element; Jean-Christophe Maillot’s Roméo et Juliette (Tybalt); Crystal Pite’s Plot Point; and Kent Stowell’s Swan Lake (Prince Siegfried). While at Houston Ballet II, James performed leading and featured roles in John Neumeier’s Yondering, Ben Stevenson’s The Sleeping Beauty, and Stanton Welch’s The Long and Winding Road.  At Kansas City Ballet, Mr. Rogers danced leading roles in Val Caniparoli’s Lady of the Camellias; Devon Carney’s Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, and The Sleeping Beauty; William Forsythe’s In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated; Jiří Kylián’s Petite Mort; and Twyla Tharp’s In the Upper Room.


Audrey Malek (she/her) is from Gilmanton, New Hampshire. She trained at Washington School of Ballet on full scholarship and attended summer courses at Dance Theater of Harlem, Ellison Ballet, ABT, and Washington School of Ballet. Audrey was a member of Washington Ballet Studio Company before joining Pacific Northwest Ballet as a corps de ballet member in 2021. While at Washington Ballet, she danced leading and original roles in Julie Kent and Victor Barbee’s Giselle (Myrtha); Jessica Lang’s Beethoven Serenade; and Mthuthuzeli November’s Where Do We Go Now.


Luca Anaya (he/him) is from Manhattan, New York. He studied at The School of American Ballet and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He also attended summer courses at PNB School, Miami City Ballet, Chautauqua Institution, and Manhattan Youth Ballet. 


Dylan Calahan (he/him) is from Grand Rapids, Michigan. He studied at Michigan Ballet Academy, privately with Laura Berman, The School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He also attended summer courses at PNB School and The School of American Ballet on scholarship. 


Rosalyn Hutsell (she/her) is from Houston, Texas. She studied at Allegro West Academy of Dance, Vitacca Dance Project, School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. She also attended summer courses at the School of American Ballet; Boston Ballet School, Charlotte Ballet, Arts Umbrella, and PNB School on scholarship.


Larry Lancaster (he/him) is from Baltimore, MD. He studied at Peabody Dance Conservatory, Baltimore School for The Arts, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He also attended summer courses at PNB School, The School of American Ballet, and Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, all on scholarship.


Destiny Wimpye (she/her) is from Atlanta, Georgia. She studied at the Colburn Dance Academy and Pacific Northwest Ballet School, both on full scholarship, and attended summer courses at Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Debbie Allen Dance Academy, School of American Ballet, PNB School, and Chautauqua Dance Program.

Link to comment

When Peter Boal said that there would be more promotions, he wasn't kidding!

From the press release about the announcement at tonight's The Seasons' Cannon opener:

Six Degrees of Promotion: Pacific Northwest Ballet Announces Slate of New Soloists!

November 4, 2022 – Seattle, WA – Pacific Northwest Ballet Artistic Director Peter Boal announced the promotion of six corps de ballet dancers to the rank of soloist during the opening night performance of THE SEASONS’ CANON: Madison Rayn Abeo, Dammiel Cruz-Garrido, Christopher D’Ariano, Amanda Morgan, Christian Poppe, and Leah Terada. PNB’s newly-promoted dancers are all performing in the current rep, running through November 12, and featuring the world premiere of Dwight Rhoden’s Catching Feelings, George Balanchine’s Duo Concertant, and the North American premiere of Crystal Pite’s The Seasons’ Canon. (Streaming digitally November 17 – 21.) For casting information, visit PNB.org/season/seasons-canon.

In front of McCaw Hall’s red curtain, Mr. Boal brought out each dancer one at a time to announce and congratulate their promotions. (Full dancer bios are hyperlinked.)

Madison Rayn Abeo is from Seattle, WA. After several years in our school, which included a star turn as Gretel in Hansel and Gretel, Maddie became an apprentice in 2016. Her exacting technique and clarity of movement was evident in Donald Byrd’s Love and Loss. Her luminous presence enchants as the Sugar Plum Fairy in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker. She debuts in Balanchine’s Duo Concertant next week opposite James Kirby Rogers, and can be seen tonight in Crystal Pite’s The Seasons’ Canon. Join me in congratulating Maddie on her promotion.

Dammiel Cruz-Garrido is from Queens, NY. He grew up studying at the School of American Ballet while spending summers at PNB, eventually moving to Seattle. An apprentice since 2016, Dammiel has stood out for his dramatic intensity in Ulysses Dove’s Red Angels and his classical reserve and chivalrous partnering as Cavalier opposite Cecilia Iliesiu in The Nutcracker. He is always eager to work with our students and to encourage others in rehearsals. Let us applaud Dammiel on his well-deserved promotion. 

Christopher D’Ariano is from the Bronx, NY and also grew up at SAB, spending summers in Seattle and becoming an apprentice with PNB in 2017. At home in both classical and contemporary work, Christopher has been a favorite of choreographers with memorable performances in works by Alejandro Cerrudo, Robyn Mineko Williams, and Twyla Tharp. He debuts in Duo Concertant tomorrow opposite Clara Ruf Maldonado. This talented artist is also a gifted choreographer. Let us congratulate Christopher on his promotion to soloist.

Amanda Morgan is from Tacoma, WA. After several years of study in our school, Amanda joined PNB as an apprentice in 2016. Standout performances include Alonzo King’s The Personal Element and Dewdrop in The Nutcracker. She’ll take the stage later this evening in a mesmerizing moment in The Seasons’ Canon. Offstage, Amanda is a co-founder of PNB’s student mentorship program, an artistic collaborator and choreographer of note, an advocate and activist for racial and social justice in our community - and PNB’s newest soloist.

Christian Poppe hails from Lake Stevens, WA. With Maddie Abeo, he studied at Cornish College and later at PNB before becoming an apprentice in 2013. His sunny presence, soaring jumps, and rock-solid partnering have earned him an impressive range of roles. Highlights include Little mortal jump, Cacti, Afternoon Ball, and Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Christian has always approached his work with unwavering dedication and deep commitment. Join me in congratulating him on his well-deserved promotion.

Leah Terada, originally from Dallas, TX, trained at the SAB and PNB before becoming an apprentice in 2015. During her time in the company, she has inspired numerous choreographers. Signature roles include One Thousand Pieces, Future Memory, and Plot Point. The Seasons’ Canon will soon be added to this growing list. Leah’s devotion to technique and artistry is never-ending, and her collaboration with partners and choreographers offers a lesson in creation. A notable choreographer herself, please join me in recognizing Leah’s promotion to soloist.” 

PNB congratulates all of our newly promoted soloists!

 Pacific Northwest Ballet continues its 50th Anniversary Season with THE SEASONS’ CANON, featuring the North American premiere of the eponymous The Seasons’ Canon from dance innovator Crystal Pite; Catching Feelings, a world premiere by choreographer and artistic director of Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Dwight Rhoden; and George Balanchine’s Duo Concertant. THE SEASONS’ CANON runs November 4 – 13 at Seattle Center’s Marion Oliver McCaw Hall. The program will also stream digitally November 17 – 21. For tickets and additional information, contact the PNB Box Office at 206.441.2424, in person at 301 Mercer Street, or online 24/7 at PNB.org.

Link to comment
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
  • Create New...