Carla Michelle began her ballet studies at the age of 5 at the Ballet Cristina Helena in Belo Horizonte, Brazil under the guidance of Cristina Helena, Pablo Moret, Ofelia Gonzalez, and Graça Sales. She started performing with the Sesiminas Company of Dance, also in Belo Horizonte, when she was 13 and began performing principal roles when she was 15. She spent time in Cuba, training and performing as a soloist when she was 16. During this time, Carla received awards at multiple ballet competitions, including the Joinville Dance Festival, the largest dance festival in Brazil.
Carla's dance studies are not entirely restricted to ballet. She has experience with contemporary, modern, jazz, ballroom, and fusion belly dance among others. She also has a performing arts degree from the Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais. Beyond performing, Carla has a wide range of experiences in other areas of dance such as teaching ballet in the south of Italy, other styles in the U.S., and choreographing and coaching students in Brazil. Carla is passionate about helping her students reach their goals and advance their careers.
One of Carla's greatest accomplishments in dance was the founding and artistic direction of the dance company Cia Sesc de Dança in Belo Horizonte, a company that dances a range of styles, from ballet to urban dance. Carla is excited to begin a new chapter here in the U.S. starting with PDX Contemporary Ballet. This is Carlas second season with PDX Contemporary Ballet.
Born and raised in Southeast Minnesota, Julia began dancing at Janet Lang Dance Studio. Developing a love for ballet, she joined the local performance company the Rochester Dance Company at the age of 10 where she performed in her performance of The Nutcracker. With the Rochester Dance Company, she performed many different ballets and original shows, and throughout her time in Minnesota she studied many styles of dance. At the age of 16, Julia focused her ballet training further at the Minnesota Youth Ballet Academy where she trained with Daniel and Julie Blake in the school's Pre-Professional Division. After graduating high school, Julia moved to Charlotte, NC, to attend the University of North Carolina Charlotte. There she participated in the Professional Training Certificate Program in partnership with Charlotte Ballet. There she trained with Patricia McBride, Mark Diamond, Kati Mayo, Jaime Dee, Naimah Kisoki, and Traci Gilchrest. At UNC Charlotte, Julia earned her B.A. in English as well as her B.A. in Dance, working in ballet and pointe as well as Horton, Graham, and Silverstre modern techniques. Julia Foster performed Pas De Quatre, and Jewels from Sleeping Beauty, along with original contemporary ballet and pointe works choreographed by Delia Neil and Gretchen Alterowitz. Julia is excited to be joining PDX Contemporary Ballet for her second season.
Katherine Evans began her training at a young age in New Jersey. At age 15, she decided to further advance her training at the Nutmeg Conservatory for the Arts, where she was a full time residency student. While there, she had the opportunity to attend numerous summer programs, including Hungarian National Ballet's Summer International Intensive/Competition, and San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, where she was first exposed to contemporary and explorative movement. After graduating Nutmeg with an award for "Most Outstanding Performance" she spent several years dancing with companies around the country including Nashville Ballet, Oregon Ballet Theatre, Nevada Ballet, Ballet Tucson, and some time spent in New York. While there, she continued her training at Manhattan Youth Ballet, the Steps on Broadway training program, and worked as a freelance artist. She finally settled in Portland and in addition to her work with PDX CB, she continues to explore contemporary and experimental movement, with a specific interest in dance for film. Katherine is in her fourth season as a dancer with PDX CB, and also serves as the company’s rehearsal director.
Maranda Jory is a 2019 summa cum laude graduate of University of Cincinnati, where she received a BFA in Dance Performance from the College Conservatory of Music and a BA in Political Science. She received her year-round training at Los Angeles Ballet School, the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis (JKO) School at American Ballet Theatre, and State Street Ballet. While at JKO, she had the opportunity to perform with American Ballet Theatre in Coppelia and Le Corsaire, and in 2010, she was a part of the original cast of Alexei Ratmansky's Nutcracker for ABT. In 2015, she received a full scholarship to participate in the National Security Language Initiative for Youth program and train at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow, Russia. Maranda is very excited to be joining PDX Contemporary Ballet for her first season.
Molly Rea began studying ballet at the age of 5 with The Columbia Conservatory of Dance in Columbia, South Carolina, where she performed regularly with Columbia City Ballet. At the age of 15 Molly decided to further her dance education at the South Carolina Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities and graduated in 2014. She then moved her studies to Cincinnati, Ohio where she graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s College- Conservatory of Music with a bachelor of fine arts in ballet. While in college, Molly’s love of the creation of dance and contemporary movement grew with a constant focus on a recurring question, “what does it mean to be human/artist?” She focused on building her choreographic foundation, setting original pieces on the CCM dancers in 2017, and 2018, and acted guest rehearsal director for Rebecca Krumel’s piece featured in the University of South Carolina’s Spring Production In 2016. Molly has had the privilege to spend time training in Ohad Naharin’s Gaga for Dancers Technique with Gibney Dance in NYC, and other programs such as, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, Ballet West, Cincinnati Ballet, The Limon Company, and perform pieces by Jose Limon, Jennifer Archibald, George Balanchine, and others. Molly has had the honor of dancing with Ballet Pensacola as a Soloist for their 2018-2019 season, performing as “Coffee” in Richard Steinert’s “The Nutcracker” and other various roles. Molly is excited to be in Portland, where she moved to hope to further expand her explorative experience of humans in Dance. Molly is excited to join PDX Contemporary Ballet for her first season!
Rodé Krige was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and began her dancing at age 4 in Atlanta, Georgia. In 2007, Rodé started seriously training under Susan Beebe, and at the age of 14, Rodé was asked to join Ms. Beebe's invitation only pre-professional division.
After spending various summer at Joffrey Ballet, Calolina Ballet, Orlando Ballet, and BalletMet, Rodé received a scholarship to join BalletMet as a trainee at 17. During her two years as a trainee there, Rodé performed with the professional company works by Edward Liang and Gerard Charles. In 2016, Rodé joined Nevada Ballet Theatre as an apprentice where she had the opportunity to perform soloist roles in The Nutcracker and also performed in Swan Lake set by the legendary, Cynthia Gregory. After her year in Vegas, Rodé joined Ballet Tucson as a senior apprentice and performed in many new works in addition to George. Balachine's Walpugisnacht. Rodé is excited to join PDX Contemporary Ballet for her second season.
Sara Gilbert was born and raised in Portland, Oregon. She began training in various dance styles at a young age. Throughout high school Sara was a part of Arts and Communication Magnet Academy's "Dance West," directed by Julane Stites. Sara passion for ballet intensified and she continued additional classical training with Sarah Rigles at the Classical Ballet Academy. Sara has studied ballet at the Joffery New York, Boston Ballet on scholarship, and the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Upon returning to Portland, Sara danced with Melissa St. Claire's company "Annapurna." Through her training and professional experience, Sara has performed notable pieces and roles including Sugar Plum Fairy, Dew Drop, and Mouse Queen in "The Nutcracker," featured roles in "Peter Pan," Alvin Ailey's "Reflections in D," Gerard Theoret's "Balletango" Pas De Deux, and Les Watanabe's "Tablao Flamenco." She holds a B.A. in Women Studies from Portland State University. She is thrilled to be joining PDX Contemporary Ballet for her third season.
Sarah Morris began her training at California Dance Theatre before moving to San Francisco to train on full scholarship with the San Francisco Ballet School. She also spent summers training with American Ballet Theatre, Pacific Northwest Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Ballet West, and State Street Ballet. In 2019, Sarah graduated with honors from Butler University with a BFA in Dance Performance and a second major in Psychology. While at Butler, she performed in a variety of classical ballets and contemporary works, including The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Giselle, Paquita, La Bayadère, Cinderella, Le Corsaire, and Sleeping Beauty, as well as Susan McGuire’s ¡a bailar!, Cynthia Pratt’s Streamlines (an outdoor installation piece and part of a grant from The National Science Foundation), and Ramon Flowers’ Like Water for Dancers.Sarah has also choreographed several of her own works, including Home, Museum of Broken Relationships, The Yellow Wallpaper, Only light can do that., and Spectrum, and served as the director of the Butler Ballet Student Choreography Showcase. Additionally, Sarah is passionate about sharing her art form in ways that are enriching and therapeutic to the community. She taught dance outreach classes for Butler Community Arts School and studied Dance Movement Therapy at Antioch University New England. She currently works part-time as a behavioral therapist for children with Autism. Sarah is thrilled to begin her first season with PDX Contemporary Ballet.
Victoria began dancing at the age of four in Carson City, Nevada. She studied ballet, jazz, tap and modern at Ayako's Dance Studio (formally Pinkerton Dance Academy) for fourteen years. Victoria continued her ballet training at Friends University in Wichita, Kansas under the direction of former ABT principle, Stan Rogers. While earning her BFA in ballet, she was featured in several of Stan's work including "Les Sylphides," "A Midsummer Nights Dream" as Titania, and "The Nutcracker" as the Dew Drop Fairy and Harlequin Doll. She was a soloist in Dominic Walsh's "Piano Works." After graduating Summa Cum Laude in 2015, Victoria moved to Portland and had the opportunity to perform with Northwest Dance Project in the world premier of Yin Yue's "Distant Fold." This is Victorias fourth year with PDX Contemporary Ballet.