New York City native SarahAnne Perel spent 10 years at the School of American Ballet before securing a corps contract with Los Angeles Ballet and moving cross-country to pursue her longtime dream of dancing professionally. But Perel had other dreams, too. After her second season with LAB, she enrolled at Duke University
From her first audition with The Joffrey Ballet, Amanda Assucena knew she was where she was meant to be. “Before the audition class, I had never connected with ballet technique and free movement so much,” Assucena recalls. The Brazilian-born dancer officially joined the trainee program in 2012, was promoted to company artist the following year, and continued her meteoric rise with lead roles like the Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker and Juliet in Romeo and Juliet by the age of 19.
During the pandemic she became a certified personal trainer and established Balanced With Rosi, to encourage a balanced approach to fitness and food. “I’ve been very adamant about not doing things like ‘What I eat in a day’ videos,” Leney says. “Everyone is different and everyone’s body is different, so I just try to be the kind of person that I’d want the younger version of me to see on social media.”
Keerati Jinakunwiphat balanced dance training with figure skating and gymnastics during her childhood in Chicago. As a BFA student at SUNY Purchase, she met two influential mentors.
While studying dance at Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, Jazlyn Martin fell in love with acting—and began to rethink her career path. “After high school, I was auditioning to join a dance company, but I also decided to take acting seriously,” says Martin, who grew up training in everything from jazz and hip hop to modern and African dance.
There’s flying through the ranks, and then there’s American Ballet Theatre’s SunMi Park, who skyrocketed from apprentice to soloist all within the span of a year.
Yusha-Marie Sorzano’s Identity as an Immigrant and Black Woman Informs Her Work as a Performer, Teacher, and Choreographer
Even before she realized it, Yusha-Marie Sorzano’s identity as an immigrant was the driving force behind her all-encompassing career—one that has ranged from company positions with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and Camille A. Brown & Dancers to guest artist spots and commercial work to choreographing, teaching and becoming the co-artistic director of Zeitgeist Dance Theatre.
In 2008, Adrienne Carter headed to a summer intensive at Miami City Ballet, determined to become a professional dancer. “I applied to be considered for the year-round school and got accepted,” she recalls.