Dancers

IAN DENOBO

Ian Debono is a native of San Francisco and currently attends the Juilliard School working towards a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance. In his three years there, Ian has been fortunate enough to perform new works and repertoire of Ohad Naharin, Trisha Brown, Paul Taylor, Donald McKayle, Andrea Miller, Sonya Tayeh, Amy Hall Garner, and Norbert De La Cruz III. In his hometown, he trained in ballet and contemporary dance at San Francisco Academy of Ballet and Ruth Asawa School of the Arts, working with Alonzo King LINES Ballet faculty Arturo Fernandez and Gregory Dawson. In 2016, he performed in the Oakland Ballet Company’s 2016 production of The Nutcracker, and in 2021, he performed in West Edge Opera’s production of Eliogabalo. This is his second season with CDP.

Photo by Eduardo Patino.NYC.

FRANCESCA DUGARTE

Born in Caracas, Venezuela, Francesca Dugarte trained at Academia de Ballet Clasico Nina Novak and La Scala Theatre Ballet School. She has been a principal dancer at Teatro Teresa Carreno, a demi-soloist at Zurich Ballet, a principal dancer at Victor Ullate Ballet, guest artist at Slovakia National Ballet and is currently a dancer with BalletMet. In 2011, Francesca was a contestant on the reality show, Amici di Maria de Fillippi in Rome. She is the winner of numerous awards including second place in Youth American Grand Prix, second place in Arabesque International Ballet competition in Russia, Jury Award in Jackson Ballet Competition, first place and Presidential Sponsorship Award in Korea’s International Ballet Competition, first place in Rieti Danza Festival, and most recently, second place in World Ballet Competition in Orlando. Francesca has danced a wide repertoire of the classics as well as contemporary works by Twyla Tharp, George Balanchine, Victor Ullate, Septime Webre, Trey McIntyre, Val Caniparoli, and Annabelle Ochoa among others. She made her debut with Chamber Dance Project in Diane’s pas de deux Berceuse in performances at Baltimore’s Peabody Institute in March 2014. This is Francesca’s tenth season with CDP.

Photo by Eduardo Patino.NYC

JULIA ERICKSON

Ballet Master and Dancer

Julia Erickson received her training on scholarship with Pacific Northwest Ballet School and San Francisco Ballet School. She toured to Europe and Asia with PNB and danced with Texas Ballet Theater for two seasons prior to joining Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre in 2001. She was promoted to soloist in 2004 and to principal in 2009. Julia has performed principal roles in Swan Lake La Bayadère, The Sleeping Beauty, La Sylphide Le Corsaire  Balanchine’s Theme and Variations,  Western Symphony, Who Cares?, Prodigal Son, Sylvia Pas de Deux, Agon, and Serenade; and Jerome Robbins’ West Side Story Suite In the Night, and Fancy Free among many others. Her contemporary repertory includes Paul Taylor’s Company B; Twyla Tharp’s In the Upper Room, Nine Sinatra Songs, and Octet; William Forsythe’s In the Middle, Somewhat Elevated, and Jiří Kylián’s Petite Mort and Sinfonietta. Julia also dances for Santa Monica-based Barak Ballet, received Pittsburgh’s 2014 BRAZZY Award for outstanding female dancer and is an entrepreneur and writer. This is Julia’s fourth season with Chamber Dance Project.

Photo by Rebecca Huffman

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DAVIT HOVHANNISYAN

Born in Armenia, Davit Hovhannisyan began dancing at the age of six and four years later he was accepted into the National Ballet School of Armenia on a full scholarship. At the age of 16, he began his professional career with the Armenian National Ballet Company. After arriving in the United States he received critical acclaim dancing with numerous companies throughout the country and joined Milwaukee Ballet in 2004. He is a principal dancer with Milwaukee Ballet where he is in his ninth season. He has danced many principal roles such as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Basilio in Don Quixote, Rudolfo in La Bohème, the title role in Dracula, Oberon in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Captain Hook/Mr. Darling in Peter Pan, Prince Solor in La Bayadère, Tamino in The Magic Flute, Captain Phoebus in The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Prince Siegfried in Swan Lake, the Moon Prince in Scheherazade, Franz in Coppélia, and leads in The Nutcracker as well as in numerous contemporary ballets. Davit has worked with contemporary choreographers including Michael Pink, Stephen Mills, Bruce Wells, Diane Coburn Bruning, Trey McIntyre, Margo Sappington, Kathryn Posin, and Mark Godden, among many others. This is Davit’s tenth season with CDP.

Photo by Eduardo Patino.NYC

PATRIC PALKENS

Patric Palkens is in his fifth year as a Soloist for Boston Ballet, with over a decade of experience performing both classical and contemporary repertoire for ballet companies around the world. Patric is known for his charming stage presence, dynamic jumps and athletic partnering. He has performed leading roles by choreographic greats such as Jerome Robbins, George Balanchine, William Forsythe, Annabelle Lopez Ochoa, Victoria Morgan and Val Caniparoli. Patric Is excited and grateful to return to Chamber Dance Project this summer to be a part of creating new work and revisiting some old favorites.

Photo by Eduardo Nile Scott Photography

GRACE-ANNE POWERS

Grace-Anne Powers, a Pennsylvania native, is currently an artist with BalletMet. She began her ballet training at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet and continued her studies at The Art of Classical Ballet in Pompano Beach, Florida, with Magaly Suarez. Prior to joining BalletMet in 2015 she was a dancer at Ballet San Jose, a soloist at La La La Human Steps in Montreal and a principal soloist with the Cuban Classical Ballet of Miami. She has performed a large repertoire of principal roles in the classics including Giselle, Swan Lake, La Bayadère , Don Quixote, Sleeping Beauty, Romeo and Juliet, Carmen, Esmeralda, Raymonda, and Le Corsaire, among others. With La La La Human Steps, she performed in New Work choreographed by Edouard Lock, which premiered in Amsterdam in 2011 and then toured internationally for the following two years. She has also had the pleasure of dancing works by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Edwaard Liang, William Forsythe, Twyla Tharp, Ohad Naharin, Paul Taylor, Val Caniparoli, Dwight Rhodin, Yuri Zhukov, Amy Siewert, Andrea Schermoly, Alex Ketley, Gustavo Ramirez Sansano, Micheal Pink, Matthew Neenan, Alberto Alonso, and Jorge Garcia, among others. Her awards include the Jury Award at Shanghai IBC in China and a Silver Medal at the World Ballet Competition in Orlando. She was named one of Pointe magazine’s Standouts of 2018 for her interpretation of the title role in Edwaard Liang’s Giselle. Grace-Anne has also been involved in several film projects for BalletMet including In “Tandem” and “Becoming Violet”, for which she received an Emmy Award. 

Photo by Jennifer Zmuda

LUZ SAN MIGUEL

Ballet Master and Dancer

Born in Madrid, Luz San Miguel received her training at Carmina Ocana Ballet School, and on a scholarship at the Municipal Institute of Ballet in Antwerp, Belgium. Prior to joining Milwaukee Ballet, she danced with BalletMet, Charleston Ballet Theater, Tulsa Ballet, Dresden Ballet, and Leipziger Ballet in Germany. She has performed as a guest artist in Italy, Spain, Switzerland, Belgium, Germany, Portugal, and several cities in the United States. Luz has performed leading roles in ballets by John Cranko, George Balanchine, John Neumeier, Nacho Duato, Anthony Tudor, Stanton Welch, Uwe Scholz, Glen Tetley, Paul Taylor, Lila York, and Jerome Robbins among others. During her time with Milwaukee Ballet, she has performed roles including Lucy in Dracula, Clara and Marie in The Nutcracker, Odette/Odile in Swan Lake, Kitri and Matador Lady in Don Quixote, Tinker Bell in Peter Pan, Swanhilda in Coppélia, and the lead roles in Cinderella, Esmeralda, Romeo and Juliet and La Bohème. Luz is returning for her tenth season with CDP.

Photo by Eduardo Patino.NYC

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ALEXANDER SARGENT

Alexander Sargent is a Washington D.C. native, having begun his dance training under Kee Juan Han at The Washington Ballet before attending and graduating from The HARID Conservatory with the Jeannot B. Cerrone Award for excellence in performance. In 2020 he graduated from Juilliard. Alex has performed in works by Martha Graham, Peter Chu, Twyla Tharp, José Limón, and Stephen Petronio and danced the principal role in Donald McKayle’s Crossing the Rubicon at Lincoln Center. Alex has also worked as a digital media producer for performing artists and arts organizations since 2018. This is Alex’s third season with CDP.

BENJAMIN SIMOENS

Benjamin Simoens began his dance training at age five under Diane Lauridsen in Los Angeles, California, at the Lauridsen Ballet Center. In 2014, he was accepted into the Juilliard School, where he continued his dance studies. There, he had the opportunity to perform lead roles in Moves by Jerome Robbins and Little Mortal Jump by Alejandro Cerrudo. He had the privilege to study with many influential teachers, including Lawrence Rhodes, Risa Steinberg, Terese Capucilli, Bobbi Jean Smith, Milton Myers, and Francesca Harper, Francisco Martinez, and many more. After graduating in 2019, Simoens joined Milwaukee Ballet, where he performed in Michael Pink’s Coppélia and Pink’s world premiere, Classical Symphony. He has also danced in works by Timothy O’Donnell, Garrett Glassman, Aleix Mañé, Enrico Morelli, Dani Rowe, and Darrell Grand Moultrie. In the summer of 2022, Benjamin performed the North American premiere of Edward Clug’s “Mutual Comfort” with SFDanceworks. This is Benjamin’s first season with CDP.

JIAMOND WATSON

Jiamond Elizabeth Watson was born in Oxon Hill, Maryland and grew up in Northeast Washington attending Duke Ellington School of the Arts, where she was awarded $10,000 from the DC-Capital STARS Talent Competition in 2015. In 2016, she was awarded the Director’s Scholarship to attend the University of the Arts in Philadelphia. There she performed works by Sidra Bell, Tommie-Waheed Evans, Ronald K. Brown, and Amy Hall Garner and then joined BalletX as an apprentice working with choreographers Matthew Neenan, John McFall, Gregory Paul Dawson, and Jo Stromgren. Since graduating in 2020, Jiamond has been a guest artist with Alonzo King Lines Ballet, taught at the Paula Brown Performing Arts Academy, and performed her own choreographic work at the Edgewood Arts Center in Washington, DC. Jiamond is learning Tommie-Waheed’s new work, Gravity to Grace, for our June 2022 season. This is Jiamond’s second season with CDP.

Photo by Georgia Wescott Photograph.

APPRENTICE DANCERS

ERIN BROTHERS, Senior Apprentice

Erin Brothers was trained in Dallas, Texas under the mentorship of Geralyn Del Corso Garner, attending Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. During her high school training, she performed lead roles in works by Lar Lubovitch, Jodie Gates, and Emory LeCrone, working closely with other renowned artists at summer intensives such as The School of American Ballet, The Juilliard School, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Upon graduating from high school, Erin moved to New York to work with Complexions as an apprentice from 2017 to 2018. Erin later went on to attend the Juilliard School, where she has worked with Aszure Barton, Justin Peck, Ohad Naharin, Bobbi Jene Smith, Jamar Roberts, Marcus Jarell Willis, Michelle Dorrance, and Caili Quan. While at Juilliard, Erin worked closely with a string quartet to create community engagement programs, exploring the connection between live music and dance. Erin will graduate from The Juilliard School in May 2022. This is Erin’s second season with CDP.

HANNAH RAY BRUCE, Apprentice

Hannah Ray Bruce was born in Barrington, IL where she trained at Barrington Dance Academy. She graduated summa cum laude from Point Park University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in dance.  While at Point Park, Hannah performed works by Peter Merz, Ernest Tolentino, Kiesha Lalama, and Nicholas Petrov’s Romeo and Juliet. Hannah has danced professionally with MERZTANZ Contemporary Ballet Company under Peter Merz, Convergence Ballet under Jennifer Cafarella, and was a principal dancer with Central Illinois Ballet under Rebekah von Rathonyi. Hannah has performed roles including Mina and Lucy in Dracula, Clara and Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker, the title role in Firebird, Daisy in Gatsby the Ballet, the title role in Cinderella, Glinda in Wizard of Oz, Johanna Barker in Sweeney Todd, Aurora in Rose Adagio with the Peoria Symphony Orchestra, and originated the role of Christine in von Rathonyi’s Phantom of the Opera. This is Hannah’s first season with CDP.

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Header Photo: Silhouettes of our dancers in Songs by Cole
Photo by Eduardo Patino.NYC