Etienne Diaz was born in Havana, Cuba. He began his training in the Orlando Ballet School under the direction of Peter Stark. Mr. Diaz has performed as a guest artist with many regional ballet schools. In 2010, he joined the National Opera of Bucharest, performing in a variety of roles including Russian and Doll in The Nutcracker and Mercutio in Romeo & Juliet. In 2012, he was invited as guest artist with Balletto del Sud and toured throughout Italy, performing in several roles, including The Blue Bird pas de deux from The Sleeping Beauty. From 2012-2014, Mr. Diaz danced with Milwaukee Ballet. He joined Pennsylvania Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet for the 2014-2015 Season and has since danced principal roles in George Balanchine’s The Prodigal Son, and roles in Christopher Wheeldon’s Swan Lake, Jerome Robbins’ The Concert, and Alexei Ratmansky’s Jeu de Cartes. Mr. Diaz has been a guest instructor for MBA’s Summer Intensive Program since 2015, and joined MBA’s year round faculty in 2016.
Zachary Hench, originally from Loysville, Pennsylvania, Zachary Hench began his training at the age of seven at Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, where he studied for eight years. From there, he went on to train at the Kirov Academy in Washington, D.C.
Mr. Hench became a member of Boston Ballet II in 1993 and was invited to join Boston Ballet as a member of the Corps de Ballet in 1994. He was promoted to Soloist in 1996 and Principal in 1998. While at Boston Ballet, he danced many principal classical roles including Siegfried in Swan Lake, Albrecht in Giselle, Conrad in Le Corsaire, Ivan in Christopher Wheeldon’s The Firebird, Cavalier and Snow King in The Nutcracker, and featured roles in George Balanchine’s Symphony in C, Serenade, Who Cares?, Tarantella, Divertimento 15, and Valse Fantasie. He also danced leading roles in contemporary works such as Mark Morris’ Malestrom, Merce Cunningham’s Breakers, Wheeldon’s Corybantic Ecstasies, Twlya Tharp’s Waterbaby Bagatelles, Lila York’s Celts and Ode to Joy, and Eliot Feld’s Contrapose.
In 2000, Mr. Hench joined San Francisco Ballet as a Soloist, was promoted to Principal in 2003, and continued to perform nationally and internationally. His repertoire of principal roles grew to include Albrecht in Helgi Tomasson’s Giselle, Espada in Tomasson’s Don Quixote, Tomasson’s Prism, Jerome Robbins’ Fanfare, and Balanchine’s Ballo Della Regina, Allegro Brillante, and Diamonds and Emeralds inJewels. His featured roles in contemporary ballets include Wheeldon’s Continuum and Polyphonia, Peter Martins’ The Waltz Project, Robbins’ Glass Pieces, Nacho Duato’s Without Words, and Mark Morris’ A Garden.
Mr. Hench joined Pennsylvania Ballet as a Principal Dancer in April 2004 and originated the role of Siegfried in Wheeldon’s new Swan Lake in June 2004. Mr. Hench also danced the lead role of Romeo in John Cranko’s Romeo and Juliet, Colas in Frederick Ashton’s La Fille Mal Gardee, Prince Desire in The Sleeping Beauty, and Oberon in Balanchine’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Additional leading roles in contemporary ballets include Twyla Tharp’s In the Upper Room, Jerome Robbins’ In the Night; and Matthew Neenan’s 11:11, As It’s Going and Carmina Burana. Mr. Hench has also performed throughout Spain with the Angel Corella Foundation and traveled to Beijing and Shanghai in 2006 to appear with Nilas Martins’ Dance Company in Don Quixote and Peter Martins’ A Fool For You. In 2014, he was filmed for a PBS special, dancing Diamond’s from Balanchine’s Jewels, and in 2015 he was featured in Dove Chocolate’s “Love Less Ordinary” commercial campaign.
Mr. Hench served as a union delegate while dancing at Pennsylvania Ballet, facilitating communication between dancers and management and representing his colleagues during contract negotiations. The company then invited Mr. Hench to join the artistic staff as Ballet Master, and he retired from the stage in 2015 as Siegfried in Wheeldon’s Swan Lake.
Mr. Hench now serves as Artistic Director of Juneau Dance Theatre (JDT) in Juneau, Alaska, where he has choreographed a full production of The Nutcracker and numerous pieces for JDT productions, community collaborations, and outreach efforts. He produced JDT’s first ever summer intensive program and continues to direct the organization, travelling to Juneau periodically throughout the year.
Daniel Mayo is originally from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He received his BFA in Dance in 2007 from The Juilliard School in New York City. Daniel most recently danced with Philadelphia based company BalletX, from 2014 until his retirement in August 2018. As a member of BalletX, Daniel performed extensively throughout the United States and was featured in numerous creations including works by choreographers Matthew Neenan, Jorma Elo, Nicolo Fonte, and Trey McIntyre. Prior to joining BalletX, Daniel was a member of the Montreal based company RUBBERBANDance Group under the direction of Victor Quijada. During his 3 years with RUBBERBANDance Group, Daniel toured throughout North America, Europe, and Asia, and participated in multiple film projects, most notably for Bravo!FACT. From 2007-2010 Daniel was a company dancer with Atlanta Ballet under the direction of John McFall, where he performed many classical roles as well as contemporary works. He has also worked professionally as a guest artist with The Atlanta Opera, Dance Grand Moultrie, and Bennyroyce Dance. In addition to performing, Daniel was on faculty at Western Wyoming Community College, and currently serves as a guest teacher and choreographer throughout the United States. He is delighted to join the MBA faculty for 2018-2019, and will lead beginning, intermediate and advanced classes in Metropolitan Ballet Company’s (MBC) Boys’ Scholarship Program.