Faculty


Abbie Siegel

Marisa Albee joined PNB as an apprentice in 1989, became a full Company member in 1990 and was promoted to Soloist in 1994. She was born in Brooklyn and studied at the School of American Ballet and Pacific Northwest Ballet School’s Summer Course. Prior to joining the faculty at PNBS she taught at the Washington Academy of Performing Arts.

Kelly Boal trained at the School of American Ballet and joined New York City Ballet in 1984, earning a promotion to soloist in 1989. She left NYCB in 1993 to pursue guesting opportunities that included performances with Dutch National Ballet and Ballet Manila and participation in Le Gala des Étoiles in Montreal, Canada. She taught at the School of American Ballet and has served PNBS as a part-time faculty member for two years, teaching both the Professional Division and the Company.

Peter Boal serves as Artistic Director of Pacific Northwest Ballet and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Mr. Boal assumed the directorship of Pacific Northwest Ballet in 2005 following a successful career with New York City Ballet as a principal dancer, and as a faculty member at The School of American Ballet. He received his dance training from SAB under the directorship of George Balanchine. Mr. Boal was a faculty member at The School of American Ballet since 1997, teaching technique, variations, men’s and women’s classes and partnering. He was a guest teacher at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and Royal Danish Ballet School.

Megan Becker has a master's degree from The New School and is both a professional choreographer and performer. She danced with Katy Hagelin Dance Project, Couer D' Alene Summer Theater, and Ballet Spokane, and has taught dance at Gonzaga University, the American Dance Institute, and numerous studios throughout the country. She has choreographed for Taproot Theater Company, Seattle Pacific University, and Ballet Spokane, among others. Ms. Becker joined the PNB School Children’s Division faculty in the Fall of 2011.

Kayti Bouljon joined the PNBS Children's Division faculty in the Spring of 2005. A native of Illinois, she studied at Kate Carol and Company Dance, Gus Giordano Dance Center in Chicago, and graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in Dance. In addition to teaching for PNBS, she is a member of the PNB Outreach faculty and is the manager of PNB’s Education and Community Programs.

Michele Curtis trained on scholarship with the Joffrey Ballet School, Pacific Northwest Ballet School and Merce Cunningham Dance. She received a BA in Dance from UCLA. Ms. Curtis has performed with various dance companies including Connecticut Ballet, Mark Morris Dance Group and Donald Byrd/The Group. She served on the faculty of Connecticut Ballet and worked as a freelance teacher at various studios in New York, Connecticut and throughout the Northwest. Ms. Curtis joined the PNBS faculty in Spring of 2006.

Nancy Crowley grew up in Marshfield, Massachusetts, where she received her early ballet training. She joined the faculty of Pacific Northwest Ballet School in 2013 after a performing career in classical and contemporary ballet companies in the United States and Canada. She is a former principal dancer with Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, La La La Human Steps, and Ballet Arizona, where, from 2005-2012, she served also as school director and company rehearsal assistant.

Juanita Franke received her early training from the Royal Academy of Dance. She received her BA at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina where she danced and choreographed for the Appalachian Dance Ensemble.  Her work was selected for the North Carolina Dance Festival showcase.  She has most recently taught at the Kehl School of Dance in Madison, Wisconsin, where she created a creative movement program for dancers aged 2-3, and choreographed for the Verona Youth Ballet. 

Angelyn Fulton is a native of Seattle, Washington and received her primary training at Pacific Northwest Ballet. She also trained and performed with Fort Worth/Dallas Ballet and Nashville Ballet. She has taught at various studios in Alabama, Tennessee and Texas including Nashville Ballet and most recently Texas Ballet Theater.

Kiyon Gaines is from Baltimore, Maryland. He trained at Baltimore School of the Arts, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School, the School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a member of the corps de ballet in 2001 and was promoted to soloist in 2012. As a choreographer, Mr. Gaines created blitz…Fantasyə {SCHWA}, Infinite Intricacies, and Interrupted Pri’si’zh’en for PNB’s annual Choreographers’ Showcase performances. ə{SCHWA} was taken into PNB’s repertory during the 2007 Celebrate Seattle Festival. He also choreographed M-Pulse, set to a commissioned score by Cristina Spinei, for the Company repertory in 2008, and Sum Stravinsky in 2012. Mr. Gaines has also participated in the New York Choreographic Institute.

Susan Gorter studied at the School of the Pennsylvania Ballet and performed as an apprentice with Pennsylvania Ballet. She danced with the Basel Ballet in Switzerland and taught for the Basel Ballet School. Ms. Gorter joined the PNBS faculty in 2001.

Dana Hanson began her training on Vashon Island, Washington with John Wilkins and continued her studies at Olympic Ballet School, Pacific Northwest Ballet School and the School of American Ballet. She joined the New York City Ballet in 1990, appearing in numerous featured roles in the Balanchine repertoire and touring throughout the world. Prior to joining the PNBS faculty in the fall of 2006, Ms. Hanson was a frequent guest teacher at the School of American Ballet.

Dane Holman

Dane Holman is originally from Savannah Georgia. She trained at the North Carolina School of the Arts, American Ballet Theatre and School of American Ballet. She danced with American Ballet Theatre II and the Cleveland Ballet. Ms. Holman joined the faculty in 1997.

Benjamin Houk began his career with Joffrey II and later joined Pacific Northwest Ballet, where he performed as a principal dancer for thirteen years. He served as Artistic Director of Nashville Ballet (1996-98), and Fort Worth Dallas Ballet (1998-2001). Mr. Houk has taught and lectured at dance schools and universities around the country, and served as a grants panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2001, Mr. Houk and his wife, Lauri-Michelle Houk, founded San Elijo Dance & Music Academy in San Diego County; and in 2010 they opened 4S Dance Academy.

Lauri-Michelle Houk trained at the School of American Ballet in New York City. She danced with Chicago City Ballet, was a soloist with Pacific Northwest Ballet (1987-1994), and was a principal dancer with the Nashville Ballet. Ms. Houk most recently directed and taught at the San Elijo Music and Dance Academy in San Marcos, California. She has staged several ballets including works by Stowell and Petipa.

Benjamin Houk © Lindsay Thomas

Deborah Kenner received her BFA from the University of Arizona, where she was a full academic and dance scholarship student. Ms. Kenner has had the opportunity to perform with Colorado Ballet, David Taylor Dance Theatre and State Street Ballet. During the 2008–2010 seasons she was Artistic Director of Tucson Regional Ballet. Ms. Kenner joined PNBS faculty in 2010, she is also a member of the PNBConditioning staff.

Miriam (Wenger) Landis grew up in Salt Lake City, Utah. She studied at Ballet West Conservatory, San Francisco Ballet School, and the School of American Ballet, and was a member of Miami City Ballet from 1996-2000. Ms. Landis earned a B.A. in English from Stanford University. She has taught ballet at several schools and universities, including Stanford and the University of Utah. Miriam is also the author of the young adult novel Girl in Motion, about a girl who becomes a professional ballerina. Miriam teaches Children’s Division classes.

Caitlin Cooney Mack, a Seattle native, trained at Pacific Northwest Ballet School for 11 years. She graduated from PNB’s Professional Division program, and joined Kansas City Ballet. In addition to an 11-year performing career with KCB, Ms. Cooney Mack spent 11 years teaching dancers of all ages at Kansas City Ballet School. She joined the PNB faculty in the fall of 2014.

Dina McDermott holds a BFA in Dance from the Juilliard School, and also an MFA in dance performance/choreography. She has been teaching, choreographing and dancing for over 20 years. She joined the PNBS faculty in 2001 as a Creative Movement teacher. Ms. McDermott is also a member of the PNBConditioning staff.

William Miglino grew up in Seattle, Washington. He studied at Ballet Chicago and performed with Carolina Ballet as well as a number of Chicago based dance companies. Mr. Miglino served on the faculty of the School of Ballet Chicago and also taught at Chicago High School of the Arts. He joined PNBS in 2013 as an Open Program instructor.

William Miglino © Lindsay Thomas

Adam Miller is from Providence, Rhode Island. He trained on scholarship at the School of American Ballet, American Ballet Theatre School, and graduated from North Carolina School of the Arts. Mr. Miller began his professional career at Pennsylvania Ballet, and was a principal dancer with Pacific Northwest Ballet, Hartford Ballet, and Les Grands Ballets Canadiens. From 2008-2012, Mr. Miller served as Artistic Director for Cirque du Soleil’s productions of Saltimbanco and Kooza.

Kaori Nakamura is from Gumma, Japan. She trained at the Reiko Yamamoto Ballet Company and the School of American Ballet. In 1986, she won first prize at the 14th Prix de Lausanne competition in Lausanne, Switzerland. In 1988, she won a bronze medal at the International Ballet Competition in Varna, Bulgaria. Ms. Nakamura joined Royal Winnipeg in 1990, where she was made a principal dancer. She joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as a soloist in 1997 and was promoted to principal in 1998. Ms. Nakamura joined the PNBS faculty in 2014.

Meg Potter

Meg Potter is originally from Metuchen, NJ, and trained on scholarship at the Joffrey Ballet School in NYC. She danced with Joffrey II Dancers, then joined American Ballet Theatre under the direction of Mikhail Baryshnikov.  After relocating to the west coast, Ms. Potter danced with Pacific Ballet Theatre where she also served as ballet mistress. She was a faculty member at the School of Oregon Ballet Theatre, and was an adjunct faculty member at Portland State University. Ms. Potter joined the PNBS faculty in 1998 and also holds the position of Assistant Principal.

Abbie Siegel, School Principal, performed with Connecticut Ballet, then went on to serve as the company's Associate Ballet Mistress. A former faculty member of the Harkness School, Eliot Feld Ballet in New York and Connecticut Ballet, Ms. Siegel joined PNBS faculty in 1991. In addition to teaching, she served as Director of Pacific Northwest Ballet School's DanceChance program from 1999-2002, and was appointed Principal of The Francia Russell Center in the summer of 2002.

Suzanne Singla trained with Columbia Dance Ensemble in Vancouver, Oregon Ballet Theatre School and Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, where she received a Certificate of Dance. She performed with dance ensembles in Oregon, New York and South Africa. Her teaching credits include faculty positions at Connecticut Dance Theatre, School at Steps and Ballet Hispanico. Ms. Singla joined the PNBS faculty in 2004.

Eva L. Stone received a B.F.A. in Performance and Choreography from Arizona State University. She trained at SUNY Purchase, the Alvin Ailey School, and was awarded a scholarship from Dance Magazine to study choreography at Harvard University with David Gordon and Wendy Perron.  Ms. Stone has performed professionally with modern dance companies in both Boston and Los Angeles. She earned her M.A. Degree in Choreography and Choreological Studies from the Laban Centre in London, England.  Ms. Stone came to Seattle in 1995, re-established her modern dance company, the Stone Dance Collective, and began an extensive teaching and lecturing career throughout the Puget Sound.  

Marjorie Thompson trained at the School of American Ballet and danced with New York City Ballet. She has served on the faculty of the School of American Ballet, Ballet Arts Minnesota, Eliot Feld Ballet and Pennsylvania Ballet. She first joined the faculty of Pacific Northwest Ballet School in 1996, where she was also Director of Therapy and Conditioning. She went on to serve three years as Director of Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School, then moved to Minneapolis where she was School Principal of Minnesota Dance Theatre. She returned to the PNBS faculty in the Summer of 2007, and is PNBConditioning Program Director.

Julie Tobiason studied on scholarship at the School of American Ballet. Prior to joining PNB, Ms. Tobiason danced with Chicago City Ballet under the direction of Maria Tallchief. She joined PNB in 1986, was promoted to Soloist in 1989 and became a Principal in 1992. Ms. Tobiason joined the faculty in the fall of 2002.

Le Yin is from Nan Chang, China. He joined PNB as a Principal in 2002. Mr. Yin was formerly a principal dancer with Houston Ballet. He joined the PNB School faculty in the fall of 2009. Mr. Yin continues to perform as a guest artist with ballet companies around the world.

Guest Faculty


Patricia Barker, former principal dancer with Pacific Northwest Ballet, is considered one of the world’s most gifted ballerinas. She received her early ballet training from Lynne Williams in Richland, WA, studied on scholarship both at Boston Ballet School with E. Virginia Williams and Violette Verdy and Pacific Northwest Ballet School with Francia Russell, Perry Brunson and Janet Reed. Ms. Barker danced in many of the great full length ballets and contemporary works from renowned choreographers. She performed with Pacific Northwest Ballet extensively throughout Europe, Asia, Australia and North America, and appeared as a guest artist with national and international ballet companies. She danced the lead role of Clara in Nutcracker the Motion Picture, and starred as Titania in the BBC’s film, A Midsummer Night’s Dream in a celebratory re-opening of the Sadler’s Wells Theatre in London. She graced the covers of Dance Magazine, Danser, Pointe Magazine, Dance Australia, Dance Teacher, Dance Pages, Ballet Review and Dance International. Ms. Barker currently serves as artistic director of Grand Rapids Ballet in Michigan. Additionally, she stages, rehearses, and coaches ballets for professional companies, including staging works for the Balanchine Trust on the Slovak National Ballet and the Hungarian National Ballet. She is a judge for international ballet competitions and teaches at nationally renowned ballet schools.

Betsy Cooper is a former member of Nationaltheater Mannheim, Matthew Nash Music & Dance, Makarova & Company, and Connecticut Ballet, and is now enjoying her 6th year performing with Seattle Dance Project. Trained at the School of American Ballet and Alvin Ailey Dance Center, her repertory includes works from classical and neo-classical, modern and postmodern genres. Betsy teaches at the University of Washington where she directed the Dance Program from 2001-13 and now serves as the Divisional Dean of Arts. She holds an MFA in Dance from the UW and a BA in Archeological Studies from Yale University. Cooper is a recipient of a 2004 Distinguished Teaching Award.

Kirsten Cooper studied dance and performed professionally in Los Angeles where she received experience in film, music videos and stage productions. She was an assistant teacher on the LA Dance Force convention tour and was a featured dancer on Costa Cruise Lines. She has served on the faculty of the University of Oregon and Theater Ballet of Spokane. Her choreography has been featured at Bumbershoot Arts Festival, Sign of the Times, and Ballet and Bubbly. In addition to teaching Jazz at PNBS, Ms. Cooper is the director of Westlake Dance Center's pre-professional company.

Kyle Davis is from Green Bay, Wisconsin. He trained at Makaroff School of Ballet and on scholarship at Rock School for Dance Education and North Carolina School of the Arts, and attended summer courses on scholarship at Milwaukee Ballet School, the School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. He also studied with Ethan Stiefel and Warren Conover. In 2008, Mr. Davis won the Prix de Lausanne competition in Lausanne, Switzerland. He also won various awards in the Youth American Grand Prix Regional and Finals in 2005 and 2006. He was a 2007–2008 recipient of the Elizabeth Harriet Weaver Memorial Scholarship and the Martha and Spencer Love Foundation Scholarship for Excellence in the Arts at the North Carolina School of the Arts. Mr. Davis joined Pacific Northwest Ballet as an apprentice in 2008 and was promoted to corps de ballet in 2009.

Monica Mota

Jaret Hughes has been at the core of Seattle's hip hop and dance scene for many years, going back to his years with the Seattle Supersonics as the first male dancer in the NBA. In addition to teaching, Jaret choreographs award-winning hip hop routines for local dance teams, and performs with his professional group Twisted Elegance.

Petur Iliev teaches Character Dance at PNBS. Mr. Iliev studied at the National Choreography Academy of Bulgaria and received a Masters Degree in Choreography from the Bulgarian National Institute of Choreography. He served as Artistic Director for dance ensembles in Bulgaria and the U.S., and has choreographed and taught for dance companies, universities and outreach programs, both nationally and internationally. Mr. Iliev joined the PNBS faculty in the summer of 2003.

Nancy Kadel, MD Orthopaedic Surgeon, Group Health Physicians Foot & Ankle Reconstruction, Dance Medicine Co-Chair, Dance/USA Task Force on Dancer Health President-Elect Performing Arts Medicine Association.

Monica Mota danced professionally with the New Mexico Ballet Company and the Bill Evans Dance Company. She studied Flamenco with Sara de Luis, Pablo Rodarte, Marisol and Joaquin Encinias of the National Institute of Flamenco, and with numerous Spanish performers in Granada, Spain. Ms. Mota obtained her B.A. in Dance from the University of New Mexico and a Masters in Teaching from Whitworth University. She performed as a soloist with the Denver Flamenco Fantasy Dance Theatre, Oleaje Flamenco of Seattle, Chicas Patas of Spokane, Flamenco Denver, Solo Flamenco of Portland and Underground Flamenco of Denver. Additionally, Monica has performed her own solo choreography at On the Boards in Seattle.

Jason Ohlberg

Jason Ohlberg received his formal dance training at the State University of New York at Purchase from 1991 to 1995 and completed his B.F.A. at Cornish College of the Arts in 2013. He danced with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Dance Kaleidoscope, Jan Erkert and Dancers, and Wade Madsen and Dancers. Seattle Dance Project named him resident choreographer for the company's sixth season in 2013. Jason has served on faculty at Barat College, the school of Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, the University of Washington, Cornish College of the Arts, Spectrum Dance Theater, Arc Dance Productions, Dance Fremont and the Y.A.I. program of the Seattle Children's Theater.

Melanie Skinner is from Milford, Delaware. She trained on scholarship at School of American Ballet and North Carolina School of the Arts. She joined PNB as an apprentice in 1990 after completing her training on scholarship from Pacific Northwest Ballet School. She became a full company member in 1991 and was promoted to Soloist in 1994. Ms. Skinner retired from the Company at the end of the 2003-04 season, and taught for the School and Outreach from 2004-2010.

Giovanni Villalobos © Craig Hall

Giovanni Villalobos; Dancer, Teacher and Choreographer, was born in Puerto Rico where he began dancing at the age of 8 under the guide of Roberto Rodriguez. He joined the School of American Ballet in New York at 14 years old, and studied with Peter Boal, Jock Soto and Andrei Kramarevsky. He studied with the Royal Danish Ballet as part of the D.A.N.C.E student exchange program and choreographed for the New York Choreographic Institute. In 2003 he was awarded the Mae L. Wien Award for Outstanding Promise, and a year later he joined the New York City Ballet as an apprentice. As a member of the company he has been featured in many ballets by George Balanchine (Harlequinade, The Nutcracker, Orpheus, Prodigal Son, Union Jack), Jerome Robbins (The Cage, Interplay, West Side Story, Opus Jazz), and Peter Martins (Fearful Symmetries, Romeo & Juliet, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty). He has worked with prominent choreographers including Christopher Wheeldon, Susan Stroman, Eliot Feld, Benjamin Millepied, Liam Scarllet, and appeared in the film version of Jerome Robbins’ Opus Jazz. In 2014, he was chosen to become a member of the Teachers Fellowship at SAB, where he currently teaches.

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