BalletNext Launches NextGeneration
Program for Promising New Dancers


  • NextGeneration development program for promising young dancers interested in experiencing boundary-breaking exposures, improving core technique, performance opportunities
  • Artistic Director, Michele Wiles, and a diverse faculty aim to provide a curriculum for exploration of artistic growth
  • Now open for applications at:



May 15, 2017 - NEW YORK — Today BalletNext announced the debut of NextGeneration, an intensive development program for promising new dancers. The Company has a history of merging exceptional, unseasoned talent with some of the world’s most respected dancers in genres as diverse as ballet and Brooklyn Flexn’. The new program formalizes the approach in a curriculum that provides personal instruction, involvement with professional BalletNext activities, and live performance experience.

“So many dancers go from graduation to intern or corps without experiencing multiple approaches and aesthetics,” said Michele Wiles, Artistic Director. “They need a place to explore and develop their own style and personal potential. Young dancers can easily miss the very things that bring them a deeper artistic joy and fulfillment over the long term.”

The NextGeneration curriculum is built with an “Open Architecture” approach. Open Architecture allows flexibility in teaching methods to accommodate an individual dancers strengths and weaknesses for sustainable progress throughout a dancers career. Adherence to a specific technique becomes secondary within Open Architecture, providing BalletNext faculty the ability to give personalized instruction that minimizes risk of injury and promotes body health. The Open Architecture curriculum gives the NextGeneration dancer a philosophy and methods that can help sustain them personally and professionally throughout their growth and ultimate career achievements.

BalletNext was created in 2011 by internationally acclaimed American Ballet Theatre Principal Dancer, Michele Wiles, to combine the professional disciplines of classical ballet with boundary-busting artistic dance, choreography, and musical collaborations. The Company brings artistic voices to the studio that have developed from diverse backgrounds. The results generate fresh perspective in an environment that promotes experimentation, creative problem solving, and a focus on process. Since its inception in 2011, BalletNext has presented over 30 new works and has performed throughout the United States and Europe.

The NextGeneration development program extends this creative environment to young dancers who would like to experience different modalities of thinking in performing arts while improving their core techniques.

“NextGeneration is about so much more than technique! It provides opportunities to collaborate with people who will push, press, explore, and expand the dancer's creative and professional potential... especially when it's hard,” continued Ms. Wiles. “We hope BalletNext can contribute to the movement toward a healthier, more-holistic future for dancers’ professional and personal lives.”

Each dancer in the program is taught personally by Michele Wiles and the NextGeneration faculty. Dancers will train in classical ballet technique and blended styles that draw from diverse aesthetics at least five days per week. Dancers will have open access to BalletNext company class and will be included in the creation of new choreography. NextGeneration dancers are expected to participate in live performance opportunities including choreographic exhibitions, creative retreats, and other events such as the BalletNext Spring and Fall seasons in New York City.

The NextGeneration curriculum also addresses other important factors in the developing dancer’s career, such as refining personal social media promotion and marketing, resume writing, best audition practices, and networking skills. Individual mentoring is available from Company members familiar with the challenge of launching a dance career while still making ends meet.

NextGeneration faculty members for Fall 2017 include:

Michele Wiles. Founder and Artistic Director of BalletNext. She was a Gold Medal winner at the 18th International Ballet Competition in Varna, Bulgaria a Bronze Medal winner in Nagoya, Japan and a finalist at the Paris International Dance Competition. She was a Princess Grace Foundation – U.S.A. Dance Fellowship recipient for 1999–2000 and won the Erik Bruhn Prize in 2002. She joined American Ballet Theatre's Studio Company in 1997 and joined American Ballet Theatre in 1998. She was promoted to soloist in 2000 and to principal in 2005. In 2011, she left that position to start BalletNext.

Jay Donn. Ballet Master BalletNext, Founder of the Brooklyn dance style known as Flexing and creator of the sub-style, “Punchlines.” At age 15, he started his dance career on BCAT's TV show, Flex N Brooklyn and saw a boost in his career when his group, Ringmasters, appeared on MTV’s America’s Best Dance Crew Season 3. He has been seen in many music videos alongside Elephant Man, Nicki Minaj, LMFAO Sky Blu, among others and been in the featurefilms Step Up 3D and FLEX IS KINGS. He toured worldwide with LMFAO Sky Blue Big Bad University and Company XIV’s ballet, Pinocchio. He regularly performs with electro-acoustic cellist composer, Chris Lancaster, and so much more.

Jesus Pastor. Artistic Director of Human Dance Project. Former Principal Dancer at Compañia Victor Ullate, Senior Soloist at English National Ballet, Soloist at American Ballet Theatre. In 1995, Jesus was awarded the Gold Medal at the Eurovision Competition for Young Dancers and was invited to perform as a guest artist at Maurice Bejart in the ballet Nomos Alpha alongside Sylvie Guillem. In 1998, Jesus joined the Compañia Nacional de Danza under artistic director Nacho Duato and continued to tour nationally and internationally. He then joined the Scottish Ballet, where his sublime performances, elegant line, and handsome features earned several outstanding reviews in both Scottish and Irish media.

Marjorie Liebert. Movement therapist and ballet mistress, has coached injured dancers including Misty Copeland, Michele Wiles and other internationally acclaimed dancers. Chosen by Boris Kniaseff to carry on his barre-à-terre, she continues to help dancers find their proper biomechanics to avoid injury and achieve maximum physical performance.


Candidates may register to audition for NextGeneration Fall 2017 by June 1st, 2017. The audition will be held June 3rd, 2017 in New York City. Please see