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$5-Class: NYC Community Ballet

Sat, May 4, 2019 @ 10:30 am - 12:00 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 10:30 am on Saturday, repeating until Sat, June 29, 2019


NYC Community Ballet
w/ Mira Cook, Bethany Mitchell, Elisabeth Jeffrey, Leigh Schanfein, Gabrielle Lamb, Michelle Thompson Ulerich

Saturdays | 10:30am – 12pm | April 20 – June 29


NYC $5 Community Ballet is an Intermediate/Advanced level open class series, started in 2015 by professional dancers responding to the need for an affordable ballet class option. Community Ballet is a fun, economical and open space to keep up your ballet technique. Taught by rotating roster of high level artists, this class takes you through a thorough ballet warm up and center work. The class is for you and we encourage you to make it your own and enjoy yourself. We see Community Ballet as a venue for a wide variety of artists to meet and share their love of dance.

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On Instagram @nycommunityballet HERE


Mira Cook / Claudio Rodriguez

Mira Cook is from Austin Texas where she studied ballet from age 6 with Arletta Howard-Logan and Terri Lynn Wright and later as a trainee on scholarship with Ballet Austin performing in the corps de ballet. Mira went on to become a member of City Ballet of San Diego, Liss Fain Dance SF, and is a current artist with Battery Dance and Indelible Dance. She has performed and taught dance workshops in more than 40 countries with Battery Dance including at Georgian National Ballet (Tblisi), University of Trinidad and Tobago, Poznan Ballet (Poland), Xinghai Conservatory (China) & Mophato Dance Theater (Botswana) and is featured in the dance documentary “Moving Stories” which premiered at MoMA in 2018.
Mira’s choreography has been performed by Austin Dance Ensemble, City Ballet of San Diego, SUSHI performance and visual art (San Diego), Indelible Dance, and Battery Dance.

Currently, Mira teaches ballet at Studio Maya and is a frequent substitute teacher at Peridance. She is the founder of NYC Community Ballet. Her class focuses on correct alignment, musicality and ease of movement, pairing rigorous combinations with generous use of breathe.


Leigh Schanfein is a freelance dancer, choreographer, and teacher as well as an independent researcher in the fields of kinesiology and biomechanics.

Leigh is a regular guest instructor and choreographer for dance schools in Indiana, Montana, California, Idaho, and New York. She has trained and performed across the USA and abroad in modern, ballet, and contemporary dance, and currently performs professionally as a freelance artist in NYC. She has performed with companies such as City Ballet of San Diego, Collective Body|Dancelab, Indelible Dance, Christopher Caines Dance Company, Yoo and Dancers, and the Park Avenue Armory, and has guested with Benjamin Briones Ballet, New American Youth Ballet, Lafayette Ballet, and

Leigh Schanfein/ Tristan Pope

CONNetic Dance. She has performed in commercial productions including on stage with comedian Hannibal Buress as part of the Oddball Comedy Tour, the Davines NYC hair show, and during Fashion Week NYC for designer Cristina Ruales. Leigh is a former Director of Dance for Periapsis Music and Dance,where her choreography was described as “gorgeous and lush.” She is also a contributing journalist for Dance Informa Magazine.

Leigh received her M.S. degree in kinesiology with a specialization in biomechanics from Purdue University, and her B.S. degree in animal physiology and neuroscience with a minor in dance from the University of California San Diego. As a graduate student, she received multiple awards for her research with dancers including two awards through the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science. Her research has focused on the mechanisms by which humans control balance and how sensory feedback is integrated for the control of posture. From 2012-2018, Leigh worked as a research associate at the Harkness Center for Dance Injuries, part of NYU Langone Health. Her research there covered a wide range of topics concerning injury prevention among dancers. Leigh has taught courses in health, motor development, biomechanics lab, and stress at Purdue University, and anatomy at Peridance Capezio Center. In 2015, she joined the faculty at Barnard University as adjunct lecturer of biomechanics in the department of dance.

Leigh’s class focuses on developing solid and functional ballet technique, playing with musicality, and exploring creativity within ballet movement.


Bethany Mitchel / Claudio Rodriguez

Bethany Mitchell was raised in Mission Viejo, California, where she studied dance from the age of four at the Ballet Conservatory under the direction of Alan McCarter. She danced for several companies in California including Liss Fain Dance, City Ballet of San Diego, State Street Ballet, and Ballet Pacifica before moving to New York in 2012. Bethany currently dances, teaches, and choreographs internationally with Battery Dance, as well as performs locally with Indelible Dance and General Mischief Dance Theatre.

Bethany has been teaching Community Ballet classes since it began in 2015. Her high-energy ballet class focuses on musicality, proper technique, and artistic expression.


Elisabeth Jeffrey started her classical training under the tutelage of Carlos Stroia in Minnesota and went on to train at the Joffrey Ballet School under a full merit scholarship, during which time she danced with Arts Umbrella Dance Company and Peter Pucci Plus Dancer. Elisabeth is a freelance dancer and current company member of Periapsis

Elisabeth Jeffrey / Alex Goldis

Music & Dance and Thomas Ortiz Dance.
Elisabeth is the rehearsal director of Periapsis Music and Dance, and has also enjoyed leading their auditions, as well as Emotions Physical Theater’s workshops/Auditions. She has also taught company classes for Benjamin Briones Ballet, and has been a supplementary teacher for Greenwich House Music School, Dancation (NJ), Andrea’s Dance studio (BX), Logrea Dance Academy (NY).

Elisabeth is so excited to be part of NYC Community Ballet, and believes strongly in supporting the community for the success of all. Her class is built on an honest and straightforward approach to ballet. Classes provide a firm technical structure, focus on the individual’s needs, technical goals, and accuracy of movement, while preparing the professional for the day. To contact or learn more visit: www.elisabethjeffrey.com

Gabrielle Lamb, winner of a Princess Grace Award for Choreography, is based in New York City, where she directs her own company, Pigeonwing Dance. Her work has also been presented by the Banff Centre, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, BalletX (Philadelphia), Whim W’him (Seattle), Ballet Collective (NYC), Dark Circles (Dallas), Sacramento Ballet, Milwaukee Ballet, Ballet Austin, Ballet Memphis, Jacob’s Pillow, Hubbard Street 2, Dance Theatre of Harlem, SUNY Purchase Conservatory, SALT Contemporary Dance (Utah), and Dance on Camera at Lincoln Center.

Ms. Lamb has won choreographic competitions at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Milwaukee Ballet, and Western Michigan University, as well as the Banff Centre’s Clifford E. Lee Award and a New York City Center Choreography Fellowship. Most recently she was selected Grand Prize Winner of the S&R Foundation’s Washington Award.

A native of Savannah, GA, she trained at the Boston Ballet School and was a longtime soloist at Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montreal. In 2009 she was invited by Christopher Wheeldon to join his company Morphoses in New York City. Her repertoire as a performer has also included principal roles in works by George Balanchine, Jiri Kylian, Mats Ek, Ohad Naharin, Nacho Duato, Luca Veggetti, Shen Wei, and Pontus Lidberg. Ms. Lamb has been described by DANCE Magazine as “a dancer of stunning clarity who illuminates the smallest details—qualities she brings to the dances she makes, too”.

Gabrielle’s class incorporates elements of the American, French, and Russian schools, placing emphasis on coordination of the upper and lower body as the basis for holistic and connected movement.

Originally from California, Michelle Thompson Ulerich trained at San Francisco Ballet for nine years. She also received training from Kirov Academy of Ballet, American Ballet Theater, and Tisch School of Arts. She moved to Texas and joined Ballet Austin in 2001. During her 14 years with Ballet Austin, she performed in works by Stephen Mills, Balanchine, Tharp, Ulysses Dove, Nelly van Bommel, KT Nelson, James Gregg, Thang Dao, Dolbashian, Amy Seiwert, and Sidra Bell. Also during her time in Austin she completed a Humanities degree from St. Edward’s University. She also taught at the Ballet Austin Academy, Austin Kula Yoga, and Dancers Shape. Columbia Ballet Collaborative, Ballet Austin, Ballet Spartanburg, Ballet Hartford, Ballet Spartanburg, Motion Dance Theater, and Illusory Impressions have commissioned Michelle for choreography. Currently, she is a professor at SUNY Purchase, and teaches for the NYC Yoga Project which brings yoga to underserved populations. She has performed in New York with XAOC Contemporary Ballet and Spark Movement Collective. In 2018 she was chosen as the Women’s Choreography Project winner by Avant Chamber Ballet in Dallas.
Michelle’s ballet class focuses on technique, musicality, and coordination. She finds fun ways to coach her students and help them find connection and joy.


Sat, May 4, 2019
10:30 am - 12:00 pm
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