Classical Ballet Theatre | Ballet and Contemporary Dance Classes | Reston/Herndon/Northern Virignia and Greater D.C. Area Founder | Cynthia Donavin; Artistic Director | Alisher Saburov; Ballet Mistress | Dubraskha Arrivillaga; Ballet Master/Guest Artist in Residence | Gillmer Duran 320 Victory Drive, Herndon,VA 20170 • (703) 471-0750

Guest Artists

CBT had hosted numerous workshops taught by extraordinary artists from all over the world. Here are some of these artists who have taught our workshops or master classes in the past:

2014-2015

  • Veronika Freifrau von Loehnysen
    Veronika Freifrau von Loehnysen
  • Audra Johnson
    Audra Johnson
  • Dan Joyce
    Dan Joyce
  • Amanda McKerrow and John Gardner
    Amanda McKerrow and John Gardner

2013-2014

  • Lucas Crandall
    Lucas Crandall
  • Gillmer Duran
    Gillmer Duran
  • Audra Johnson
    Audra Johnson
  • Amanda McKerrow and John Gardner
    Amanda McKerrow and John Gardner
  • Stephen Pier
    Stephen Pier
  • Iquail Shaheed
    Iquail Shaheed

2012-2013 and before


  • Tom Sawyer with Alisher Saburov
  • Coppélia with Jean Paul Comelin
    Coppélia with Jean Paul Comelin
  • Anastasia Babayeva
    Anastasia Babayeva
  • Amy Brand
    Amy Brandt
  • Jennifer DePalo
    Jennifer DePalo
  • Denis Gronostayskiy
    Denis Gronostayskiy
  • Dan Joyce
    Dan Joyce
  • Svetlana Kravtsova
    Svetlana Kravtsova
  • Valery Lantratov
    Valery Lantratov
  • Gavin Larsen
    Gavin Larsen
  • Anna Liceica
    Anna Liceica
  • Karen Reedy
    Karen Reedy
  • Scott Rink
    Scott Rink
  • Deanna Seay
    Deanna Seay
  • Michael Shannon
    Michael Shannon
  • Lorraine Spiegler
    Lorraine Spiegler
  • Gennadi Vostrikov
    Gennadi Vostrikov
  • Miranda Weese
    Miranda Weese
  • ...and many others:
    Nicolai Baletsenko
    Marjorie Mussman
    Christine O'Neal
    Barbara Pontecorvo

Guest Artist Biographies

Anastasia Babayeva

Anastasia BabayevaMs. Anastasia Babayeva is a graduate of the world-renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia. She danced professionally with the Bolshoi Theatre in Russia, Chicago Ballet, IL, Richmond Ballet in VA, International Ballet Classique, PA.

She has performed principal roles in great classical ballets such as Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Coppelia, Nutcracker, Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty and others, as well as Balanchine ballets and contemporary works of world renowned choreographers such as K. Peterson, J. Butler, M. Burn, V. Nebrada, C. Connor and many others. Ms. Babayeva also performed as a guest artist in galas and productions throughout USA.

In 2001 she co-founded the Academy of International Ballet and Performing Arts and in 2003 International Ballet Classique. Under her direction, IBC has presented acclaimed performances of major full-length ballets including Coppelia, Nutcracker, Giselle, Walpurgis Night, Swan Lake Act II, Paquita and numerous mixed repertory performances.

Ms. Babayeva received Outstanding Teacher Award from American Ballet Competition and YAGP. Her students have qualified and won medals in prestigious ballet competitions throughout USA and gone on to dance in professional companies.

In 2006 Ms. Babayeva joined the dance faculty at University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA.

Her talent doesn't stop there. Ms. Babayeva creates professional ballet costumes, including tunics, tutus, and tiaras. Her costumes are worn by dancers at competitions and ballet productions.

Lucas Crandall

Lucas CrandallLucas Crandall (Rehearsal Director) began his dance career with the Milwaukee Ballet in 1979. In 1980, he joined the Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genéve, then directed by Oscar Araiz. Under the direction of Jiří Kylián, he danced with Nederlands Dans Theater for two years before returning to Geneva, as soloist and later rehearsal assistant, under the direction of Gradimir Pankov. Mr. Crandall has performed and originated roles in works by notable choreographers including Aráiz, Kylián, Christopher Bruce, Nacho Duato, Mats Ek, Rui Horta, Amanda Miller and Ohad Naharin. In 2000, Mr. Crandall returned to the U.S. to join Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, as Associate Artistic Director and staff at the Lou Conte Dance Studio. His teaching and coaching career includes residencies at various U.S. universities; master classes and repertory workshops, both domestically and abroad; and guest positions at companies including Les Ballets Jazz de Montréal, Northwest Professional Dance Project, and the Ballet du Grand Théâtre de Genéve. Mr. Crandall's choreographic work includes multiple premieres for Hubbard Street (Atelier, Gimme, The Set) and new works for Northwest Dance Project and Thodos Dance Chicago. Mr. Crandall was recently rehearsal director for Nederlands Dans Theater's main company for three years, under the directorships of Paul Lightfoot and former Hubbard Street Artistic Director Jim Vincent. Mr. Crandall returned to Hubbard Street as Rehearsal Director in April 2013.

Veronika Freifrau von Loehnysen

Lucas CrandallVeronika was born in Moscow and at the age of five, she began dance classes in a private school. At the age of ten she entered the Moscow Choreographic Academy, the affiliate school of the Bolshoi Ballet. Here she received her academic education and a formal, strict dance education, which prepared her for the Bolshoi Theater.

In 1987, Veronika joined the Corps de Ballet of the Bolshoi Theatre. Over the next ten years she was given a wide variety of roles and took part in many different ballets in Russia, and in some of the most famous international theaters in the world.

At the world-renowned Bolshoi Theater she danced in the most important classical ballets including Giselle, Swan Lake and The Nutcracker. She was eventually made coryphaeus and performed in many leading roles.

In 1992, Veronika completed her studies at the Moscow Academy, receiving her Teaching Diploma with Honors (Red Diploma). Since 1993 she has been teaching children and adults in Moscow, the United Kingdom and the United States. In addition, Veronika has been an international model and is fluent in English, Spanish and Italian.

John Gardner

Stephen PierJohn Gardner was born in Lafayette, Indiana, and began his ballet training at the age of 12 with Glen Ashton in Lafayette, and subsequently trained at the National Academy of Arts in Champaign, Illinois, under the direction of Michael Maule. He received a scholarship to American Ballet Theatre’s School at the age of 16 and joined ABT’s secondary company three months later, in 1977. In 1978 he joined ABT’s main company and was promoted to the rank of soloist in 1984. Gardner’s diverse repertoire included many soloist and principal roles, representing an extensive range of styles and giving him the opportunity to work with some of the great ballet choreographers of the 20th century, including Antony Tudor, Jerome Robbins, Agnes de Mille and George Balanchine.

In 1991 Gardner joined Mikhail Baryshnikov’s White Oak Dance Project, affording him the opportunity to work closely with choreographers such as Merce Cunningham, Paul Taylor, Mark Morris, Lar Lubovitch and Martha Graham. Gardner created numerous roles during his time with the White Oak Dance Project and toured extensively in Europe, the United States, Asia and South America. He returned to ABT in 1995, where he danced a wide variety of roles with the company until 2002. In 2000, Gardner, together with his wife Amanda McKerrow, began working for the Antony Tudor Trust, staging and coaching his superlative ballet,The Leaves Are Fading, around the country.

During the course of his career, Gardner has achieved an excellent reputation as a master teacher and coach for ballet on both the professional and student levels, and has staged numerous ballets for professional companies and schools across the United States.

Denis Gronostayskiy

Denis GronostayskiyDenis Gronostayskiy is a graduate of the world-renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia. He danced professionally with the Moscow Renaissance Ballet in Russia, Philadelphia Ballet Theatre, PA, Richmond Ballet, VA, International Ballet Classique, PA.

He has performed leading roles in great classical ballets such as Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Coppelia, Nutcracker, Giselle, Romeo and Juliet, Sleeping Beauty and others as well as Balanchine ballets and contemporary works of world renowned choreographers as K. Peterson, J. Butler, M. Burn, V. Nebrada, C. Connor and many others. Mr. Gronostayskiy also performed as a guest artist in galas and productions throughout USA.

In 2001 he co-founded the Academy of International Ballet and Performing Arts and in 2003 International Ballet Classique. Under his direction, IBC has presented acclaimed performances of major full-length ballets including Coppelia, Nutcracker, Giselle, Walpurgis Night, Swan Lake Act II, Paquita and numerous mixed repertory performances.

His students have qualified and won medals in prestigious ballet competitions throughout USA.

In 2006 Mr. Gronostayskiy joined faculty of Neumann College, Aston, PA.

Mr. Gronostayskiy is also a part time photographer. His works being publish in magazines and news papers. So if you need a photographer look no further.

Audra Johnson

Audra JohnsonAudra Johnson, a New Jersey native, received her early training from Christine Taylor and Luba Gulyeava and went on to continue her studies at The New Jersey Ballet School, The Harid Conservatory, and The Atlanta Ballet Center for Dance Education. She spent various summers studying at The Eglevsky Ballet, School of American Ballet, Boston Ballet, and The Harid Conservatory. She has danced professionally with The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, The Washington Ballet, and American Repertory Ballet. Ms. Johnson has performed several principal and soloist roles in classical ballets such as "The Sugar Plum Fairy" in The Nutcracker, "Raymonda" in Kirk Peterson's Glazunov Variations, and "The Russian Soloist" in George Balanchine's Serenade. She has also been featured in Twyla Tharp's "Eight Jelly Rolls", "Octect", and "Nine Sinatra Songs" and in new works by Kirk Peterson, Harrison McEldowney, Graham Lustig, Susan Shields, Douglas Martin, Laurie Stallings, and Melissa Barak. Ms. Johnson has taught at Princeton Ballet School, North Jersey School of Dance Arts, Ballet Nova, The Washington Ballet and is a guest teacher at Olympia Dance Center in Olympia, WA. Ms. Johnson is currently performing with the Suzanne Farrell Ballet.

Dan Joyce

Dan JoyceDan Joyce is an associate professor in the School of Dance at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA.

A graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts, Mr Joyce began his professional career with the Maryland Dance Theater and Concert Dance Company of Boston.

In 1988, he was selected to join the Mark Morris Dance Group with whom he performed for the ten years. Dan appeared in over thirty works choreographed by Mark Morris, including several film and opera projects.

Since joining the GMU faculty in 1999, where he received his MFA in 2003, Dan has choreographed for the GMU Dance Company and the Theater of the First Amendment. A popular teacher for numerous regional and national festivals, he has also served on the faculties of the Virginia Governor’s School, the School of the Washington Ballet, and the Citydance Center at Strathmore.

He has participated on funding panels and advisory committees for the Arts Council of Fairfax County, the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Alexandria Council for the Arts, and Dancemetro/DC. In 2006-07, Dan returned to the stage in an international collaborative project involving American and Russian dancers, performed in Washington, DC, Moscow, Russia, as well as in Siberia. He makes his home in Arlington, VA.

Svetlana Kravtsova

Svetlana KravtsovaSvetlana Kravtsova is a graduate of Ballet Academy of Republic of Moldova.

Mrs. Kravtsova danced as a Principal soloist at the National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet of Republic of Moldova for 20 years, while simultaneously teaching ballet. She earned the position of Lead Teacher at Ballet Academy of Moldova and was recognized for excellence in teaching and choreography.

Mrs. Kravtsova has been specializing in Vaganova syllabus since 1985. She has prepared many students for International Dance competitions and received with them multiple awards, among which are two gold and two silver medals from International Ballet Competition in Constanza, Romania. She taught at various schools in Indianapolis, IN and Baltimore/Washington D.C. metro area.

Valery Lantratov

Valery LantratovMr. Lantratov has had a distinguished career as a dancer in the companies of Vladimir Vasiliev, Maya Plitsetskaya and Ekaterina Maximova and international tours with Rudolf Nureyev. Most recently he has made international headlines for his role as Czar Nicholas II in a production of the new ballet Rasputin, with Farouk Ruzimatov of the Marinsky Theater (Kirov). It premiered last year in St. Petersburg, Russia.

You can read more about Mr. Lantratov on his blog.

Amanda McKerrow

Stephen PierAmanda McKerrow is one of America’s most acclaimed ballerinas. She has the honor of being the first American to receive a gold medal at the International Ballet Competition in Moscow in 1981. Since then she has been a recipient of numerous other awards, including the Princess Grace Foundation Dance Fellowship.

McKerrow was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and began her ballet training at the age of seven at the Twinbrook School of Ballet in Rockville, Maryland. She later studied with Mary Day at the Washington School of Ballet, where she danced with the company for two years and toured extensively throughout the United States and Europe.

MeKerrow joined American Ballet Theatre under the direction of Mikhail Baryshnikov in 1982, was appointed a soloist in 1983, and became a principal dancer in 1987. Her repertoire included: the leading roles in CinderellaGiselleRomeo and Juliet,ManonLa BayadèreCoppéliaDon QuixoteThe Sleeping BeautySwan LakeLa Sylphide and The Nutcracker. She has been acclaimed for performances of shorter works by George Balanchine, Antony Tudor, Sir Frederick Ashton, Jerome Robbins and Jiří Kylián. McKerrow has created roles in ballets by choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Clark Tippet, James Kudelka, Agnes de Mille, Choo San Goh and Mark Morris. She has also appeared as a guest artist with ballet companies throughout the world.

In 2000, together with her husband John Gardner, McKerrow began working for the Antony Tudor Trust, staging and coaching his superlative ballet,The Leaves Are Fading, around the country. She has also staged numerous other ballets for professional companies and schools across the United States. During her last ten years performing as a principal ballerina with American Ballet Theatre, she spent as much time as she could working with students and young dancers. Upon her retirement from ABT in 2005, she has devoted the majority of her time to teaching and coaching this great art form.

Stephen Pier

Stephen PierStephen Pier has achieved a uniquely rich and varied career as a dancer, teacher, and choreographer. His credits as a performer include many years with the Jose Limon Company where the New York press hailed him as "…one of the most gifted dancers on the modern dance scene today." He went on to become a leading soloist with the Hamburg Ballet in Germany performing the title roles in John Neumeier's "Othello" and Saint Matthew's Passion" and creating numerous other major roles during his nine years with the company. As a member of the Royal Danish Ballet for six years, Mr. Pier had the privilege of dancing leading roles in works of Bournonville, Balanchine, MacMillan, Bejart, and collaborating with many of Europe's finest contemporary choreographers.

Mr. Pier was invited to teach both the company and the school of the Royal Danish Ballet and served as ballet master for the company from 1992-1996. He has taught on the faculty of the Alvin Ailey School, the Martha Graham Center, Regional Dance America, New York International Ballet Competition and for many notable companies in Europe, America and Asia including Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Atlanta Ballet, Bat Dor, Introdans, Scapino Ballet Cedar Lake Dance Ensemble and the New National Theater, Tokyo. He was on the faculty of the Juilliard School from 1996 until 2010. His students have danced in companies around the world including, The Royal Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Netherlands Dance Theater, Martha Graham Company, Lar Lubovitch Co., Mark Morris Dance Co., Doug Varone Dancers, Cullberg Ballet, Cedar Lake Ensemble, Alvin Ailey and Bat Sheva.

In 2002, Mr. Pier began PierGroupDance to explore and collaborate with dancers and artists in various art forms. He has created over 30 works for the concert stage, opera, theater, and film. His work has been presented by The Hamburg Ballet (Ger.), Royal Danish Ballet, Royal Danish Theater, Royal Danish Opera, Bat Dor (Israel), The New National Theater (Japan), the Juilliard Dance Ensemble, The Di Capo Opera Company (NYC), Nilas Martins Dance Company, and the Dance on Film Festival at Lincoln Center. He was selected to be part of Jacob's Pillow Choreographer's Project in 1998. He co-founded and directed the emerging choreographer's workshop, "Danses", at the Royal Danish Ballet 1990-1996.

He was the Artistic Director of Juilliard's innovative Mentoring Program beginning in 2007 and in September 2008 he began a 3-year tenure as director of the new Visions and Voices: Altria/ABT Women's Choreography Project at American Ballet Theater.

Michael Shannon

Michael ShannonMr. Michael Shannon is an American Bolshoi Ballet Star, Principal Danseur Noble, Honorary Professor of Choreography & Master Teacher, the first American graduate of the Bolshoi Ballet Academy, Moscow Choreographic Institute, and Hungarian State Ballet Institute. Mr. Shannon is the first foreign principal dancer of the Bolshoi since its founding in 1776. He was also the Principal Dancer of the Vienna State Opera Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, and Permanent Principal Guest Artist with the Kremlin Palace Ballet Theatre, and Hungarian State Ballet Theatre, two time laureate and medal winner in International Ballet Competition, and honored by Presidents Bush & Clinton. Mr. Shannon has also recently accepted the position Chairman of Faculty of the newly founded Greenwich Ballet Academy, where he imparts his vast experience and knowledge of his art to the new generation of aspiring ballet dancers and choreographers.

Mr. Shannon is a prolific classical & contemporary choreographer whose living abroad for over 20 years, and world tours to 34 countries and 19 states inspired 35 ballets, 28 original premieres, and 7 current works in development. Mr. Shannon’s forte is tailor-made story ballets whose first foray in choreography began with an invitation to Choreograph and stage the William Gibson play, “Monday After the Miracle,” awarded Best Play of 1995 after its premiere in the Moscow Art Theatre of Anton Chekhov. Following this success, Prince Andrei Golitsyn and Prince Oleg Lopukhin of the Russian Nobility Assembly made him Director & Head Choreographer of the Revived Russian Imperial Theatre of Opera and Ballet under the High Patronage of Her Imperial Highness, Grand Duchess, Maria Vladimirovna Romanova where his work continued to expand with: Madame Bovary (1996) Forever (1996) Moods (1996, 1999) Divertissement Imperialé (1997).

Mr. Shannon was then invited to be Head Choreographer and Co. Artistic Director of the Russiches Kammertheater Berlin (today Russiches Theater Berlin) Labyrinth of the Soul (1998) Die Alte (1998) Mozart and Salieri (1998) An Invitation to a Beheading (1999) Die Musen  (The Muses, 2000) Licht Und Schatten (2000). Since Michael had continued to work in both Europe and the US and some of his ballets have included: Ballet de Filé (2002, 2003) Kaleidoscope (2002, 2003) The Red Serpent (2003) White (2004) Karma (2004) Satie (2005) Spiegel Im Spiegel (2006) and Appalachian Spring (2006) Mr. Shannon now works extensively with America’s hottest new contemporary ballet company Configuration under the directorship of Joseph Cipolla, and where he is currently creating two original pieces Liebestod and The Ultimate O for their Spring tour to NYC and the Alvin Ailey Theatre. 

Gennadi Vostrikov

Gennadi VostrikovGennadi Vostrikov was born in Siberia, Russia, USSR, and received his early training in Perm. The young Mr. Vostrikov studied with the renowned ballet masters Plaht and Asaular. Mr. Vostrikov's talents were recognized when he was awarded the first degree diploma in the Leningrad Ballet Competition. Upon graduation, he was asked to join the world-renowned Moiseyev Classical Ballet Company. While with the Moiseyev Company, he was coached by the legendary ballet masters Moiseyev, Asaff Messerer, and Sulamif Messerer. The Moiseyev Company traveled frequently worldwide; and, it was during one of these many tours, that Mr. Vostrikov saw the possibility for freedom and defected while in Mexico. After gaining asylum, the Mexico Ballet Company prompted him to join their company as a principal dancer and teacher.

The Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre (PBT) heard about his defection and requested that Vostrikov join PBT. While with the PBT, Vostrikov performed in numerous principal roles in ballets including: The Nutcracker, Prince Igor, Rite of Spring, Spectra de la Rose, Carmena Burana, Coppelia, Cinderella, Giselle, Swan Lake, Romeo and Juliet, Corsaire Pas de Deux, La Bayadere, and Don Quixote. In addition, he has also performed with the Pittsburgh Opera.

Mr. Vostrikov also was a principal with Chicago Ballet and Milwaukee Ballet, and was an associate professor of dance with the University of Alabama in Birmingham, at Shenandoah University, as well as Director of Ballet Zulia in Maracaibo, Venezuela.

Mr. Vostrikov is currently director of the Virginia Youth Ballet and Vostrikov's Academy of Ballet. Additionally, he is a guest teacher and choreographer with Cumberland Ballet, New Castle Ballet, Williamsburg Chamber Ballet, Louisiana Dance Theatre, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School, Pittsburgh Youth Ballet, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet in Carlisle, PA, and is a master teacher with several national and regional ballet festivals.