Kaori Ito

Ferocious. Kaori is the tiny tiger. Her innocent looks and offstage-shy demeanor are quickly discarded as Kaori shreds the SEROS stage with fast feet and piercing pointe work. She crouches, vulnerable -- then pounces in acrobatic glee, inspiring audiences with her technical prowess. Within Kaori, SEROS has the perfect combination of fury and poise.

Born in Japan, Kaori began her dance training at the age of five under the instruction of Takagi Syuntoku. A prize-winning performer, she received honors in the Saitama Ballet competition and was recognized by Ryouiti Enomoto, earning marks both as a dancer and choreographer. She participated in the Bates Dance Festival, expanding her vocabulary as a modern dancer, before enrolling in the dance program at SUNY Purchase. While still a student, she danced and choreographed both at Purchase and in New York City. In 2002 she received the Yokohama Cultural Foundation Award for choreography and for a solo performance in the Yokohama Dance Collection, Solo and Duo Competition. Her performance was aired by NHK Japanese National Television as part of a documentary. Kaori was the featured soloist in Philippe Decoufle's new work Iris, and has performed at Kanagawa Kenmin Hall, Yamaguchi Center for the Arts and Media, and the Theatre National de Chaillot, Paris. Kaori received the 2004 National Conference Award for choreographing and performing a duet in Rencontres Choregraphiques Internationales de Seine-Saint-Denis. She is currently in New York as part of an exchange program for Artists, courtesy of the Japanese Government.



Amanda Paquette

What Vesuvius-sized eruptions within this oh so tiny package! Seros discovered power and control within this little ballerina. She can balance as easily on pointe as she can her partner's fingertips. Amanda cuts the sharpest classical line, but then can relax into loose contemporary movement, before being tossed, caught, balanced, then tossed again. Fearless and agile she flies with SEROS.

Since she could walk, Amanda would tuck tiny toes under bare feet and dance across the floor "en pointe." Amanda studied at the Alvin Ailey School and at the University of the Arts, earning her BFA in Ballet. Amanda danced in the Ensemble in Fernando Bujones's Jazz Swing, was the soloist in Eva Szabo's staging of Napoli, and the featured soloist in Les Sylphides staged by Scott Jovovich. She worked with Andrew Pap as a soloist in his staging of Paquita, and in the Corps de Ballet of his original work Temps Leve. While with Scarsdale Ballet, Amanda was in the Corps of Balanchine's Stars and Stripes, staged by former NYCB dancer Diana White.



Khiara M. Bridges

Legs a mile long. Lines that stretch across the stage and back. Jumps beyond gravity's constraints. Perfectly placed pointe work. Khiara could be a classical Sugar Plum Fairy as easily as she could be a postmodern Siren. It's that adaptability--along with the perfect combination of elegance, skill, and raw, unadulterated power--that Khiara brings to SEROS.

Although Khiara began a platonic relationship with ballet at the age of four, she came to passionately, lustily, obsessively, codependently LOVE ballet when she moved to New York City and met Kat Wildish--who essentially taught her how to dance. Khiara has performed with Ballet Deviare (an experimental ballet company) and has danced soloist roles in several pieces choreographed by Artistic Director Laura Kowalewski. She has worked with the MorganScott Ballet and performed in "Fiesta de Aranjuez," choreographed by former Joffrey Ballet principal Edward Morgan. She has also worked with former New York City Ballet soloist Carol Sumner and has performed a piece of Sumner's original choreography entitled "Spring Waltz." She was a guest of the Brooklyn Music School, where she danced a principal role in the school's adaptation of the Nutcracker, choreographed by Robin Osborne. Khiara has also worked with modern dance company Sidra Bell Dance NY where she performed in "Pulse," choreogrpahed by Sidra Bell. Additionally, she has danced with Eloquence Performance Company in a soloist role in "Kitchen," choreographed by Bryon Davis. If she's not dancing, Khiara is probably studying: She received her J.D. from Columbia Law School in May 2002 and is currently pursuing a Ph.D in anthropology from Columbia University.



Michelline Coonrod

Mmmm....Michelline! A melding of music and movement, she can be so sweet, sometimes saucy and mean. Boundless, bold and fearless energy drive this ballet machine, movement sharp and line clean. You can see grave purity in SEROS' Michelline.

Born of music, Michelline plants the seed of her dance career in the rich soil of her parents' lives, her father a concert pianist, her mother a professional cellist. With the Interlochen Arts Academy, Michelline performed under the direction of Sharon Randolph before moving to New York. In the city she studied at Steps on Broadway and Marymount Manhattan College, receiving her BFA in dance under the artistic direction of Katie Langan. As a member of the MMC dance company, she performed in "Variations" by Milton Meyers, "To Be Frank" by Chet Walker, "There is a Time" by Jose Limon, "Danse Creole" by Geoffrey Holder, "Marimba" by Lar Lubovich, and pieces by Virginia Johnson and William Soleau. Michelline has performed in "Concerto Barocco" and "Stars and Stripes" by George Balanchine, "Venus" by Martha Graham, "Ravel's Bolero" by Luis Montero, and the classics the Nutcracker and Coppelia. Michelline choreographed "Little Big Sky", "Short and Suite", "Past Curfew", and "Sun Salutation". Formerly a model for photographer Frank Capri, Michelline has appeared in dance and yoga calendars. Currently, Michelline is the owner of Pointe Work Designs, featured in Pointe Magazine and sponsored by Capezio. She makes art out of pointe shoes.



Damian Johnson

What is it about Damien? Is it just that he is gorgeous? Or graceful? Is it because he can be both strong and gentle, or loving and dangerous, or rowdy and shy? No dancer works harder than Damien and no one can compete with his long limbs making long lines in perfect form. Damien commands the stage like a tribal god of fertility. He is the classical line that slides into the Picasso masterpiece that is SEROS.

A Dallas native, Damien began his ballet training at Dallas Metropolitan Ballet and continued in New York at the School of American Ballet on full scholarship. Damien also studied with Boston Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, Miami City Ballet, and The Rock School of Pennsylvania. He studied with Peter Martins, Sean Lavery, Peter Boal, Kay Mazzo, Wendy Whelan, Darci Kistler, Kyra Nycols, Andre Kramareski, Edward Villela, Katrina Killean, Devon Carney, Bruce Marks, Helgi Tomasson, Gloria Govrin, Kent Russell, and Francia Russell. While at SAB, Damien performed the Pas de Deux in Who Cares and The Four Seasons, both originally choreographed by George Balanchine. Other Balanchine works Damien performed include a Principal role in La Source, Ensemble in Brahms Schoenburg Quartet, and Boys Regiment in Stars and Stripes for the Miami City Ballet. Damien danced the Pas de Deux in Jerome Robbins' Dances at a Gathering and Puss-in-Boots in Peter Martin's Sleeping Beauty. While with American Repertory Ballet, Damien danced a Principal role in the company's production of Urban Tangos, Demitrius in A Midsummer Night's Dream, and Moishe/Rag Doll in Septime Weber's Where the Wild Things Are. Currently Damien performs with Dance Theater of Harlem II, performing as a Principal in Leveen Naido's Virra and as an Acrobat in Dougla by Geoffrey Holder