Choreographic Fellowship - APPLICATIONS ARE CLOSED
 2020-2021 Season

Application Deadline

April 17, 2020, 5:00pm EST


215-225-5389 x109

In 2015, with support from the Wyncote Foundation, BalletX launched the Choreographic Fellowship. Each season, the program pairs an emerging artist with an established choreographer to create a world premiere on BalletX at The Wilma Theater in Philadelphia. Buffalo, NY native and SUNY Purchase graduate Nicole Caruana has been selected as the 2020 Choreographic Fellow. Continue reading to learn more about Nicole’s dance career.

About the program
2019-2020 SEASON
Choreographic Fellow Nicole Caruana's world premiere work will debut at Spring Series 2020 as part of the 2019-20 Season, alongside a premiere by mentor John McFall.
Nicole Caruana

Nicole was born in Clarence, New York, a community just outside of Buffalo in 1996. Her parents enrolled her in local jazz classes to facilitate her blissful restlessness.

She began her formal training at The Conservatory of Dance at Purchase College under the direction of Nelly Van-Bommel. To further her studies, she has attended San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, London Contemporary Dance School, The American Dance Festival, Arts Umbrella Summer Dance Intensive, B12 Workshops, and studied gaga intensively in Tel Aviv. She has most recently performed the works of Ohad Naharin and Doug Varone. In 2016 she was in creative process for a new work by Leesaar The Company and an immersive theater production “All That I Can” by Punchdrunk company members.

In 2017, UANA DANS was established as Nicole’s creative home and outlet to share choreographies at home and abroad. Her work “arba” was awarded first prize at The International Competition for Choreographers in Hannover, Germany.

Since the company’s inception, they have been invited to perform in Germany, Denmark, Spain, Greece, and New York. She is excited to be commissioned to create new works for Scapino Ballet in Rotterdam, and Canadian Contemporary Dance Theater in Toronto as part of their 2019 season.

A graduate of SUNY Purchase, Nicole has been personally mentored by Doug Varone, Nelly Van-bommel, Sue Bernhard, and Dr. Rosalind Newman for her compositional studies. She presented work at Earl Mosley’s Institute of the Arts as one of their Emerging Choreographers in 2015, and at London Contemporary Dance School in 2016 as well as a collaboration with the Decoda Ensemble that premiered at the Purchase Performing Arts Center in 2017.

John McFall

JOHN MCFALL began his life in the arts with Ms. Tatiana Dokoudovska who instilled within him an insatiable curiosity and passion to commit to what you love. At sixteen, he became a contracted equity dancer with Kansas City’s “Starlight Theater,” one of the showcase Summer Stock venues in the country. He was a principal dancer with San Francisco Ballet for two decades, working with distinguished choreographers and touring the world. John became distinguished as a choreographer himself and many commissions followed including National Ballet of Canada, Dance Theater of Harlem, American Ballet Theater and San Francisco Ballet. Mikhail Baryshnikov invited John to create two works for American Ballet Theater in which Mikhail also performed.

On the heels of his dance career John became Artistic Director of BalletMet. He moved the company into a state of the art facility, created new repertoire and suddenly BalletMet was on the grand touring circuit. This financially stabilized the organization, added months to the contract and inspired the finest dancers to join the company.

Following his tenure with BalletMet, John became Artistic Director / CEO of Atlanta Ballet.

John immediately established Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education with an additional focus on bringing dance arts into Public Schools. His keen interest in programming innovative and original works for Atlanta Ballet led to collaborations with such artists as the Indigo Girls, and (Big Boi), Andre Patton from Outcast. Balancing classical dance with some of the most imaginative and creative choreography from around the world is a McFall trademark. Identifying, coaching, mentoring, and guiding the astonishing and talented dancers that are Atlanta Ballet, is what made performing that repertoire possible.

John's creative collaborative skills with artists throughout the performing arts industry has led to the next generation of audiences, artists, choreographers and designers. His innovation is taking us on a journey into the future of theater arts.

In the Studio with our Choreographic Fellows
  • Mentorship by renowned choreographer
  • $5,000 choreographic fee to create a 20-25 minute ensemble ballet on the company’s 10 dancers
  • Round-trip transportation to Philadelphia with per diem and accommodations
  • Budget of $7,000 for costumes, scenic design, and music (original composition or rights)
  • A minimum of 12 performances of the work at a Philadelphia theater during the 2019-2020 Season
  • Be available for the designated creation and performance period (TBA)
  • Have completed your first commission on a professional dance company within the past 5 years
  • Have never choreographed on BalletX
  • Be able to legally work in the United States for the duration of the residency
  • Be at least 18 years of age

The Choreographic Fellowship is generously funded by the Wyncote Foundation.

Behind the Scenes