Sophia Brown is the 17 year-old daughter of John and Amy Brown. She resides in Morgantown, WV, where she is a National Honor Society senior at Morgantown High School. She began her dance training at the age of 3 and began dancing at Morgantown Dance Studio in 2010. Her past performances include “The Nutcracker,” “The Jazz Nutcracker,” “The Snow Queen,” “Snow White,” “Peter Pan,” and “Alice in Wonderland.” Sophia has attended several dance intensives at Morgantown Dance, the WVU Summer Teen Academy and the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. She has also been a student assistant for tap, jazz, musical theater, and ballet at Morgantown Dance since 2014, assisted and performed at the annual Stepping Stones Festival, and performed at the West Virginia State Dance Festival in Charleston. Sophia loves music and is currently in the Morgantown High School Drumline and Wind Ensemble. This is her fifth season performing with the Morgantown Ballet Company.
Layla is a 15 year old sophomore at Morgantown High School. She began dancing at the age of three and has been with Morgantown Dance Studio for five years. This is Layla’s second year as a member of Morgantown Ballet Company and her first year as a student assistant for the MDS Foundations program. She has enjoyed performing in past productions of Nutcracker, Jazz Nutcracker, Snow White, Peter Pan, Snow Queen, Cinderella, Wizard of Oz and Alice in Wonderland. She has performed in Gathering Momentum at The West Virginia State Festival and will be performing again this year in the Studio Piece for MBC. In 2018 Layla attended the Nashville Ballet Summer Intensive. This year she was awarded partial scholarship for Brenau University 2019 Summer Intensive at Jackson’s Mill Dance Festival.
Autumn is 16 years old and is currently in her 5th season with Morgantown Ballet Company. She is a straight A, Honors, and AP Junior and student council member at Morgantown High School. She studies ballet, jazz, modern, and contemporary at Morgantown Dance Studio where she served as a student assistant in the Foundations Program. She also receives additional ballet training from Movements in Dance Studio. She trained at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Advanced Summer Intensive, Indiana University Contemporary Dance Intensive (on scholarship), Nashville Ballet’s Advanced Summer Program (on scholarship), Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet Summer Program, Joffrey Ballet Summer Intensive, and Brenau University Summer Dance, while serving as the program ambassador. She attended the Joffrey Experience on full scholarship and was offered acceptance to the Joffrey Trainee Programs. She has the privilege to train at the Peridance Capezio Center Global Summer Dance with renowned NYC artists and choreographers. Autumn furthered her training by attending the annual Dance WV Fall Festival where she received multiple scholarships. She also trained at the WV Dance State Festival where she performed in both MBC and MDS pieces. In 2019, she was awarded the prestigious Jerry Rose Scholarship of Excellence. She has performed in multiple MDS and MBC productions, her most notable role is “Gerda” in The Snow Queen. Autumn performed in a trio piece that won first place at the 2019 Mohigan Idol. Autumn is a recipient of the Golden Apple Award from the National Society of the American Revolution. She received state awards for several of her art works. In her free time, Autumn enjoys volunteering in community events and projects, painting, skiing, and spending time with family and friends. She is excited to cultivate her love of creating dance through MBC’s Young Choreographers Initiative Program.
Sydnie Zvolenski is a fourteen-year-old, 4.0 GPA ninth grader from Masontown, PA. Sydnie began dancing at the age of three and has been a student of Morgantown Dance Studio (MDS) for the last six years. This is her second year in the Morgantown Ballet Company. During her time at Morgantown Dance, Sydnie has danced in a variety of shows of which her favorite is the Jazz Nutcracker, where she recently danced as Lead Arabian.
Sydnie studies all genres of dance and has previously danced competitively winning many awards and scholarships with circuits such as Artists Simply Human (ASH), Artistic Dance Exchange (ADE), Revel, Bounce and 412. Sydnie also competed at the Youth American Grand Prix (YAGP).
She has attended dance intensives with Peridance Capezio Center, Joffrey Ballet School, Francisco Gella Dance Works, New York State Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Point Park University, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Broadway Dance Center NY, Abby Lee Dance Company and Dance West Virginia. This year, Sydnie was accepted to attend the Joffrey Ballet School Trainee Program in New York City on scholarship.
In addition to dance, Sydnie also studies voice and piano and is a graduate of the Barbizon the Edge modeling and acting program. Sydnie has participated in a variety of theater programs including Camp Broadway, Broadway Collective, A Class Act NY, Destination Broadway, and Stage Right. She has played roles in stage shows such as The Dreamcatcher, Willy Wonka Jr., and R.M.S. Titanic. Sydnie also served as a youth advisory board member for the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust.
Rainbow Cottrell is a 14-year old, 8th grader at Mountaineer Middle School, where she was part of the color guard for the MMS band. She has been dancing for eleven years, and this is her first year with the Morgantown Ballet Company. She attended Dance WV for the first time in October of 2019. During her time at Morgantown Dance Company, she has participated in the productions of The Nutcracker, The Jazz Nutcracker, and The Snow Queen.
Helen Sizer is a 13-year old 7th grader at Mountaineer Middle School where she maintains a 4.0 GPA. She is also enrolled in Higher Order Thinking Skills and French. She has been dancing for 10 years. She has danced at MDS for 7 years, and has performed in many MDS productionss. Her favorite roles include Fritz (The Nutcracker), The Lead Elf (Jazz Nutcracker), and The Robber Girl (The Snow Queen). This is Helen’s second year with the Morgantown Ballet Company. Helen had the privilege to attend Point Park’s two-week summer intensive. She has attended Dance WV at Jackson’s Mill for three years, and has trained under many amazing choreographers. She received a scholarship to the UNCSA two-week summer intensive. She is honored to be part of an amazing group of dancers, and looks forward to the rest of the year.
Riley Thompson is a 14-year Freshman at Morgantown High School. She has been dancing since the age of two. Riley has danced in many MDS Productions over the past 10 years, including The Nutcracker, The Wizard of Oz, and Peter Pan. She is looking forward to her third year of participation in the Student Assistant Program. When Riley isn’t dancing, she enjoys, photography, sketching, and spending time with friends. After taking a year off from the Morgantown Ballet Company, she is excited to be returning.
Ella Vest is a 13 year old eighth grader who attends Mountaineer Middle School. She began dancing at the age of three and this is her second year with the Morgantown Ballet Company. Ella is looking forward to her second year of participating in the Student Assistant Program at MDS. Ella has been a part of many Morgantown Dance productions, such as Alice in Wonderland, The Snow Queen and being the lead elf in the Jazz Nutcracker. Ella has also attended Point Park University for a summer intensive and Jackson’s Mill since 2017. Ella takes multiple classes at Morgantown Dance and enjoys learning new styles and choreography from all of her amazing teachers. When she is not dancing, Ella loves to spend time with her friends and playing volleyball.
Morgan Yost is a 13-year old 7th grader at Mountaineer Middle where she plays the flute in the middle school band. She has been dancing since the age of 2 1/2 and this is her second year with Morgantown Ballet Company. This past summer she participated in the WVU Virtual Summer Dance Academy. She has attended the WV Dance Festival at Jackson’s Mill every year since 2016 and has performed in many productions with Morgantown Dance Studio including The Nutcracker, Peter Pan, and The Wizard of Oz.
Hope Barouch is a 14 year old Freshman at Morgantown High School where she plays trumpet with the MHS Red & Blue Marching Band. She has been dancing for eight years and has been a part of Morgantown Dance School for three years. This is Hope’s first year with the Morgantown Ballet Company. She has attended the WV Dance Festival at Jackson’s Mill and has enjoyed performing in past productions of The Wizard of OZ, Snow Queen, Alice In Wonderland and The Jazz Nutcracker.