Take a look at what our Alumni are up to in the dance world!
Ballet Idaho, Cincinnati Ballet, Theatre Vanemuine
Jake Casey was born in Syracuse, New York, where he began his training with Kathleen Rathbun at the Syracuse City Ballet. He then moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to train on scholarship at the Rock School for Dance Education. During his summers, he studied on scholarship with Boston Ballet and at the Chautauqua Institution. Casey danced as a corps de ballet member with Ballet Idaho during their 13-14 season. Under the artistic direction of Peter Anastos, he performed principal and soloist roles. Casey was a 2013 NYC Finalist for the Youth American Grand Prix. He also competed nationally as a Level ten gymnast with USA Gymnastics, where he was an academic All-American. Casey joined Cincinnati Ballet in 2014 in the Corps de Ballet. In 2015, he choreographed a piece for the Inaugural Cincinnati Ballet Choreography Workshop. During the Summer of 2015, Casey danced at the National Choreographer’s Initiative in Irvine, CA. As a guest teacher and artist, Jake has instructed and danced at institutions all around the country. Currently, Jake is performing with Theatre Vanemuine in Estonia.
The Rock School for Dance Education, Sarasota Cuban Ballet School
Mary is currently attending and performing with the Sarasota Cuban Ballet School. She previous attended two years at The Rock School for Dance Education in Philadelphia, PA. Mary has performed in many Syracuse City Ballet productions including Cinderella, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker and was most recently cast as the “Lilac Fairy” in their production of Sleeping Beauty. She has attended multiple summer intensives including; New York State Summer School of the Arts, The Chautauqua Institute, The Rock School for Dance Education and the Bolshoi Ballet summer intensive in New York City.
The Rock School for Dance Education, Washington Ballet, So You Think You Can Dance, CATS on Broadway!
Claire Rathbun from Syracuse, New York began her training at Ballet and Dance of Upstate NY under the direction of Kathleen Rathbun. During her many years there, she performed soloist roles in several Syracuse City Ballet productions including Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty and Dracula. Rathbun has attended summer sessions at The School of American Ballet, San Francisco Ballet School, and most recently, American Ballet Theatre on scholarship. At age 16, she continued her training at The Rock School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania where she was taught and mentored by directors Bo and Stephanie Spassof, Mariaelena Ruiz, Justin Allen, Jennifer Wheat and Natasha Zeiger. While at the Rock School, she performed at the 2014 Youth America Grand Prix and received the silver medal for the Black Swan Pas de Deux in the NYC Finals. Rathbun also received the bronze medal in the World Ballet Competition in 2013 and 2014. After leaving the Rock School, Claire spent two year with the Washington Ballet, before moving to New York where she was cast as Victoria the White Cat in CATS on Broadway where she is still currently performing.
Royal Winnipeg Ballet School, The Rock School for Dance Education, Tulsa Ballet II, Dayton Ballet, BalletMet
Peter Kurta born in Canandaigua, NY, began his ballet training at age 4. In 2006, he continued at Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet School’s Professional Division where he trained for 5 years. In 2011, he transferred to The Rock School for Dance Education where he performed soloist roles in Balanchine’s Symphony in C and The Nutcracker. Mr. Kurta began training with Maxim Tchernychev at San Diego Ballet School where he performed principal roles such as Snow King with San Diego Ballet and Cavalier with Encinitas Performance Arts Workshop. Mr. Kurta competed in the San Diego regional Youth American Grand Prix where he placed 3rd for Pas de Deux and 2nd for Senior Men’s Contemporary. He was a member of Tulsa Ballet II for their 2014-15 season, BalletMet for 2015-16, Dayton Ballet for the 2016-17 season, and is now again performing with BalletMet Columbus.
The Rock School for Dance Education, American National Ballet
Kameron recently graduated from The Rock School for Dance Education in Philadelphia, PA after studying there for two years. Kameron has performed in many Syracuse City Ballet productions including Snow White, Dracula, Cinderella, Swan Lake, The Nutrcracker and was most recently cast as the “Carabosse” in their production of Sleeping Beauty. She has attended multiple summer intensives including; New York State Summer School of the Arts, American Ballet Theatre, and Complexions Contemporary Ballet Company. Recently she became a Scholarship recipient of “The Carrie Lazarus fund for Extraordinary Talent” and the Jenny Lynn Foundation. At this year’s Youth Grand Prix she placed 3rd in the senior contemporary division. This summer Kameron was hired in the second company of American National Ballet.
Dominic Fortunato is an alumni of Ballet and Dance as well as the Syracuse City Ballet. Currently a BFA dance major at Mercyhurst University, Dominic is in his Junior year. At Mercyhurst he has had the opportunity to dance in many classical works as well as new choreography including, Harlequinade Pas de Deux, Russian in The Nutcracker, Don José in Carmen, Blue Bird Pas de deux in Sleeping Beauty and many more. While attending school in Erie, PA, he has had the opportunity to perform with the modern/contemporary company SoMar Dance Works. During the last few summers Dominic has attended The NYSSSA School of Ballet, American Ballet Theater (NYC) , and most recently The Bolshoi Ballet Summer Session in NYC. In addition to that this past summer Dominic was cast in the ensemble for a workshop of a new musical called The Storm. The workshop concluded with a gala performance for Investors at The Roosevelt Hotel NYC. Dominic frequently returns to the Syracuse area to guest with Syracuse City Ballet!