Broadway Experienced Instructor
Certified Cecchetti Council of America
After a career in theatre that included nearly 6000 performances on Broadway and touring nationally, I find myself at home in the classroom teaching the craft to the current and next generation of performers.
I grew up in Peoria Illinois, first training in gymnastics at D and D studios, and soon found my home at two thriving community theaters that are still in existence today – Peoria Players Theater and Corn Stock Theater. That led to more serious dance training with Jack Slater, Don Coven, Joanne McLoud and Lizann O’Donnell with frequent side trips to Chicago for classes with Lou Conte at Hubbard Street Dance and Ellis Du Boulay School of Ballet, where they told me, rather condescendingly, that the MUNY OPERA in St. Louis would take anybody that could kick over their head. I, of course, headed straight to St. Louis and kicked way over my head for Sharon Halley at the MUNY. Oh, and the audition was ALL ballet, including a serious brisé volé petit allegro ballet combination… It was the brisé volé that did it (thank you, Ellis Du Boulay) and that audition turned into my first professional job as a dancer.
After retiring from performing I started teaching and with that came the second phase of my training, with the Cecchetti Council of America. The CCA is a wonderful organization of teachers from whom I have received priceless history and training from wonderful teachers and mentors: Suzanne Gray-Granger, Kay Bliss, Gail Choate-Pettit, Jean Gloria Newell, Pirkko Lawler and many more.
For 10 years I taught at my own school, Ballet Plus, training students in voice, ballet, jazz and tap. During that time I was also on the teaching staff at Ballet Florida and for 11 years was the lead dance instructor at the Maltz Jupiter Theatre Conservatory of Performing Arts.
Ballet is my root and my experience is musical theater, which is the path most of my students take, with a few straying off into the ballet, opera and pop music worlds. Teaching once again under the Ballet Plus moniker I am able to bring my services to a wider audience in the United States and Canada.
After that summer I went to New York City and took every dance class I could with David Howard through a scholarship at the Harkness School of Ballet and then later at STEPS and with Finis Jhung and Madame Darvash. After six short months I found myself cast in the first national tour of A CHORUS LINE, which led to the original bus and truck tour of A CHORUS LINE and then the international company of ACL, where I also served as assistant dance captain. After 1500 performances I returned to New York City and joined the Broadway production of CATS, where I played 7 roles and stayed for 10 years and nearly 5000 performances.
My philosophy is that if a kid from Peoria can get there, (and I know many that did) so can YOU, if you have the drive and the opportunity.
My goal is to make dance and music training affordable to access.
My hope is that, you can find YOUR unique voice. I hope you can celebrate your unique individual self so when you walk into the audition room people will discover YOU.
Thank you for reading this far. Please consider joining my team.
♥️ Mr Brian