Metropolitan Ballet Academy Student Dancers Take Top Honors at 2015 YAGP Philadelphia and Boston Regional Semi-Final Competitions; Metropolitan Ballet Wins Outstanding School 2015 Award

May 1st, 2015 |

19 young dancers performed to acclaim at YAGP Finals in New York City

Metropolitan Ballet Academy Announces Three Unique Summer Dance Study Programs

Jenkintown, PA—Young dancers studying at Metropolitan Ballet Academy (MBA) in Jenkintown, PA, achieved great success in the 2015 Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP), winning high honors at the annual competition’s regional Semi-Finals held in Philadelphia and Boston earlier this year. 19 MBA dancers were selected to compete at the prestigious YAGP Finals in New York City, which concluded on April 15th. During the Philadelphia Semi-Finals Awards presentation, Metropolitan Ballet was again awarded YAGP Outstanding School.

Metropolitan Ballet Academy, recognized by Pointe magazine as one of America’s top seven ballet studios, will celebrate its 20th anniversary year from September 2015 through June 2016. Founder and Artistic Director Lisa Collins Vidnovic said, “I am so proud of all our diverse, young dancers who come from throughout the Philadelphia region to study at Metropolitan Ballet, and who work so hard throughout the year. The accomplishments of our students who competed at YAGP is one exciting measure of our success; additional rewards come in our Metropolitan Ballet Company performances, when our dancers share their love of dance and our classical and contemporary repertoire with audiences in our community. Many students who excel at YAGP are also offered scholarships to study with regional ballet companies across America, and many of our MBA alumni dancers now dance professionally with companies from coast to coast.”

In the 2015 YAGP season, Metropolitan Ballet earned the following awards:

  • Philadelphia Regional Semi-Final (January 2015):
  • 1st Place, Large Ensemble for Moriaky (Sailors), Pavlo Virsky as restaged by Taras Lewyckyj: Cody Bakhshi (15, Abington), Juan Castellanos (14, Philadelphia), Aedan Daly (9, Philadelphia), Eoin Daly (14, Philadelphia), Tyler Diggs (13, Holland), Michael Jastrzebski (14, Philadelphia), Najae Johnson (12, Elkins Park), Caleb Mansor (14, Hatboro), Brian Ouzomgi (15, Meadowbrook), Devon Reid (14, Perkasie), Kyle Schoener (15, Chalfont), Micah Sell (12, Philadelphia), Xavier Synnestvedt (11, Bryn Athyn), Kieran Versaw-Barnes (14, Elkins Park), Charles-Henry Wache (12, Maple Glen), James Wray (10, Hatboro); all boys are Pennsylvania residents.
  • Top 12, Large Ensemble for Night Run, choreography by Tommie Waheed-Evans: Tatiana Di Bucci (17, Rydal), Gabrielle Frett (13, Cherry Hill), Marguerite Gelfin (13, Wyncote), Hannah Henderson (14, Huntingdon Valley), Sophie Lane (16, Elkins Park), Sierra Levin (18, Doylestown, PA), Rafaella Rader (14, Philadelphia), Natalie Valko (15, Chalfont), Nancy Wenger (17, Newtown), Mercedes Wentworth-Nice (15, Doylestown), Brianna Yarnoff (16, Meadowbrook); Cherry Hill, New Jersey; all other towns are in Pennsylvania.
  • 3rd place, Classical, Pre Competitive Soloist: Jacey Gailliard (10, Philadelphia, PA).
  • Top 12, Junior Classical Soloist: Rafaella Rader (14, Philadelphia, PA).
  • Top 24, Junior Classical Soloist: Hannah Henderson (14, Huntingdon Valley, PA).

Boston Regional Semi-Final (February 2015):

  • 2nd place, Senior Classical Soloist: Sierra Levin (18, Doylestown, PA).
  • Top 12, Junior Classical Soloist & Junior Contemporary Soloist: Tyler Diggs (13, Holland, PA).


“I am so grateful to our entire artistic staff, our dedicated production team, our costume design and wardrobe team, and the many dedicated MBA parents who all support our dancers during YAGP season and throughout the year,” Vidnovic said. “In particular, Ms. Natalya Zeiger took great care in preparing our dancers for the stage, and Mr. Taras Lewyckyj worked to help the Boys Ensemble take First Place and win resounding applause for Moriaky (Sailors). Our choreographers, Sarah Mettin and Tommie Waheed Evans, also created beautiful works for both soloists and ensemble.”

Metropolitan Ballet Academy announces summer dance study opportunities

Metropolitan students who competed at YAGP study dance intensively nine to 12 months of the year. For students who hope to pursue a professional career, or who appreciate the rigor of classical dancing training and the beauty of performance, Metropolitan Ballet offers pre-professional dance study for beginner, intermediate and advanced students by its highly acclaimed faculty and an outstanding array of guest artists, who teach Master Classes in seasonal workshops and Summer Intensive programs that complement MBA’s school year. For summer 2015, MBA announces three unique programs, including one that integrates academic enrichment. All classes are held at MBA’s studios located at 700 Cedar Road, Jenkintown, PA.

  • The BRIDGE: A Master Class Series for Intermediate & Advanced Dancers, June 2-9, featuring guest artists John Selya (American Ballet Theatre, Twyla Tharp’s Movin’ Out) and Olga Kostritzky (Faculty, The School of America Ballet and Novosibirsk State Opera/Ballet Theatre) for ballet and Natalia Bizinha (Mettin Movement, RIOULT Dance NY) for modern.
  • MBA’s renowned SUMMER INTENSIVE, July 6-Aug 14, offering half and full-day programs for beginner, intermediate and advanced boys and girls.
  • M3 = Math x Music x Movement©: an exciting summer enrichment program for ages 7-10, featured in April’s Dance Teacher magazine. Enroll now for Level 1: July 6-10 for children entering 2nd, 3rd or 4th grade or Level 2: July 13-17 for children who have completed Level 1.

Fall classes start September 14, 2015; all summer programs are enrolling now. For class registration and information, call 215-663-1665 or visit


The Metropolitan Ballet Academy Boys Ensemble at the YAGP 2015 NYC Finals, after winning 1st Place in the YAGP 2015 Philadelphia Semi-Finals; seated center, MBA founder and artistic director Lisa Collins Vidnovic (left) and Taras Lewyckyj (right), who restaged the traditional Ukrainian sailor dance “Moriaky” after Pavlo Virsky for the Boys Ensemble performance.

Metropolitan Ballet Academy student dancer Jacey Gailliard (age 10, Philadelphia, PA) competing in the YAGP 2015 Philadelphia Semi-Finals, where she won 3rd place in the Classical, Pre Competitive Soloist division.