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The Directors

Youth America Grand Prix 2020 & 2021

"Outstanding Teachers"

Alexander Dutko, BalletCNJ Artistic Director

Alexander Dutko

Artistic Director

Alexander Dutko received his pre-professional training on scholarship at the Nutmeg Conservatory, School of American Ballet, and the Universal Ballet Academy (formerly the Kirov Academy). In 2000 he was named an ABT National training Scholar. Mr. Dutko was the first male dancer to win the Regional Youth Grand Prix Title and in 2003 placed top 6 in the senior division and was awarded a scholarship at the Youth America Grand Prix Finals in NYC. In 2004 Alexander was the first of 10 dancers invited to join the inaugural class of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre. There he trained with Gelsey Kirkland, Julie Kent, Ethan Stiefal, Leslie Browne, Olga Dvorvenko to name a few. Alexander had the opportunity to dance in the 10th Anniversary ABT Studio Company Gala at Lincoln Center, in the premiere of Jessica Lang's Veiled Calling. Upon graduating from the school Alexander accepted a position in Miami City Ballet, under the direction of Edward Villella, performing and touring in such ballets as Balanchine's Prodigal Son, Symphony in C, Serenade, Western Symphony, and the Nutcracker, Twyla Tharp's In the Upper Room, Paul Taylor's Funny Papers, and Villella's Don Quixote and Giselle. In the spring of 2007, Alexander choreographed his first ballet Venia for Miami City Ballet's "Our Show" Performance. In the fall of 2007 he became a member of Ballet Gamonet- Maximum Dance Company, performing principal roles in Carmen and Grand Pas Classique. That same year he was featured in Pointe Magazine's "YAGP:Where are they now?". Alexander danced with American Repertory Ballet where he performed numerous soloist and principal roles in The Nutcracker, Kirk Peterson’s The Eyes That Gently Touch and Tears of the Moon, Patrick Corbin’s Follia, Gerald Arpino's Viva Vivaldi and Confetti, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and the title role in the world premiere of "Firebird". In 2011 he performed in the Career Transitions Gala at City Center in NYC, hosted by Chita Rivera. Alexander has choreographed for the Lynch School of Ballet in Long Island and for the ODance Festival in West Palm Beach, FL. He was faculty at Rutger's Mason Gross School of the Arts teaching BFA students. Alexander has trained BalletCNJ dancers for Miami International Ballet Competition, Youth America Grand Prix, among other renown International Ballet Competitions. His students have been awarded top places , both the Youth Grand Prix and Grand Prix Awards, and have received invitations the YAGP NYC Finals, where they have placed and were awarded prestigious scholarships.  In both 2020 and 2021, Alexander was awarded "Outstanding Teacher" at Youth America Grand Prix and in 2020 the "Outstanding Teacher" and "Outstanding Choreographer" awards at the Miami International Ballet Competition.  Mr. Dutko is proud to be the Founding Artistic Director of BalletCNJ.

Thiago Silva, BalletCNJ School Director

Thiago Silva

School Director

Thiago Silva is originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He Began his early dance training at Boca Ballet Theater in Boca Raton, Florida, under Dan Guin, Jane Tyree and Helen Greenford. He continued on to study with former Ballet Florida principal dancer Deborah Marquez at School of Ballet Arts in West Palm Beach. He later went on to perform professionally with Boca Ballet Theater and Arts Dance Generation in productions of The Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, Giselle, La Bayadere, The Nutcracker and George Balanchine’s Serenade alongside American Ballet Theater and New York City Ballet principal dancers: Julie Kent, Marcelo Gomez, Jose Manuel Correno, Daniel Ulbricht, Irina Dvorovenko, to name a few. In 2011, Thiago danced a collection of jazz repertoire for the YPO Funding Organization of the Florida Grand Opera in Miami and taught at the inaugural session of the Ballet Central New Jersey Intensive. Mr. Silva was a 2012 member of O Dance, a dance festival which takes place in West Palm Beach, FL. He has performed as a guest artist with the Pennsylvania Youth Ballet in their production of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Thiago has taught ballet for Rutgers University. Mr. Silva is delighted to have trained BalletCNJ dancers for the Youth America Grand Prix, Miami International Ballet Competition, among other renown international ballet competitions. His students have been awarded top places, have won both Youth Grand Prix and Grand Prix Awards and have received invitations into the NYC Final where they have placed and have been awarded prestigious scholarships. Thiago was awarded the "Outstanding Teacher" Award at the Miami International Ballet Competition 2020 and in both 2020 and 2021, he was awarded the "Outstanding Teacher" Award at Youth America Grand Prix.  He is proud to be the Founding School Director of BalletCNJ.

BalletCNJ Paquita 2018
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