FOUNDER & DIRECTOR

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HERMAN CORNEJO is one of the most celebrated dancers of our present age.


He was admitted to study at the Teatro Colón Institute for the Arts in Buenos Aires at the age of 9. At age 14 he received a scholarship from the School of American Ballet, after which he was summoned by Julio Bocca to join the Ballet Argentino, alternating the major roles of the repertoire with him during the world tour of the company.


At 16 he won the Gold Medal at the VIII International Moscow Competition, being the youngest dancer to get this award in the history of the competition until now. In 1998, at 17, he was invited to join ABT Studio Company. In 1999 he was selected to perform Bronze Idol in Makarova's La Bayadere with the American Ballet Theatre in Japan. He was promoted to soloist in 2000 and to Principal Dancer in 2003. Since then, he has been one of the greatest stars of the company. He has been acknowledged by the international press as the best technical dancer of the 21st century as well as one of the most charismatic and artistic interpreters on stage.


Considered a prodigy by teachers and critics alike, he has received numerous awards and honors. Among the most important ones, he was appointed Messenger of Peace by UNESCO; "Dancer of the Year" by The New York Times; The Star of the 21st Century Award in New York; Mr. Expressivity award in St.Petersburg; New York Dance Outstanding Performer “The Bessies Award”; the “Positano Award” as Best World Male Dancer. He is a winner of the Prix Benois de la Danse as the Best Dancer of the World; he was awarded the “The Platinum Konex” as the Best Argentine Dancer in last decade in 2019.


In 2012, he began an intense artistic collaboration with the great Italian ballerina Alessandra Ferri, beginning with the production of "Cheri", directed by Martha Clarke.  This collaboration has given impulse to various other projects, such as "Trio ConcertDance" and "Evolution".


In 2015, he debuted as artistic director of the "Latin American Stars" Gala, as a part of "BalletNOW", organized by the Performing Arts Center of Los Angeles County on the occasion of its 50th anniversary.

 

Throughout his career, Herman has become one of the favorite artists of the most famous international galas and guest artist with major companies in the world, including the Argentine Teatro Colón, La Scala de Milán, Universal Ballet of Korea, National Ballet of Japan, Kremlin Ballet, Dortmund Ballett, Hamburg Ballet, New York City Ballet, Boston Ballet, Pennsylvania Ballet, Martha Graham Company, Ballet Hispánico, Ballet Contemporáneo de Cuba.

 

He has also donated his time to perform in charity events for several organizations, such as The Rainforest Fund Benefit Concert at Carnegie Hall, where he performed with Sting, and in events raising funds for medical research to fight Cancer, Down Syndrome and Poliomyelitis.


His repertoire consists of more than ninety leading roles of classical, modern and contemporary ballets.
He also works regularly with today’s finest choreographers. Twyla Tharp, Wayne McGregor, Mauro Bigonzetti, Jorma Elo, Alexei Ratmansky, Stanton Welch, Martha Clarke, Natalie Weir, Russell Maliphant, Mark Morris, Demis Volpi and Justin Peck, among others, have created leading roles especially for him.


Cornejo has also choreographed for himself: “Tango y Yo” for Dance Open Festival 2010 in Saint Petersburg, “Two sunsets” for the “Dance against Cancer” event in 2012, “Transcendence” in collaboration with bandoneonist JP Jofre for the Kings of the Dance Tour 2014, “Milongon amigo” for the Vail International Festival in 2016 and “Momentum” with pianist Bruce Levingston for “Trio ConcertDance”.

In 2019 he celebrated his 20th Anniversary with the American Ballet Theatre.

BOARD OF DIRECTORS

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OLIVIA POWELL

Received her Ph.D. from Columbia University in Art History and Archaeology. 
Her academic training is in Italian Renaissance Art, with a particular focus on the intersection between the history of dance and painting--a subject she has lectured and taught on at Columbia and elsewhere. Her professional career began at The Frick Collection, where she managed academic programming and taught in signature public programs in the galleries.
Dr. Powell returned to Columbia University in 2014, where she has forged a career in development that spans the arts and sciences.

She currently serves as the Director of Development for Columbia's Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute.

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MARIA JOSE LAVANDERA

Journalist and writer. She is the creator of 'Revol', an online magazine on dance and ballet aimed to narrate the Latin American scene. 
She has an amphibious profile which oscillates between journalism and the performing arts, academic research on TV and radio broadcasting and the implementation of entrepreneurial online projects. Maria obtained her masters degree in Digital Media at New York University. She is an Emmy award winner recipient alongside her team of NYU Studio 20 class of 2018.

She is currently the Lifestyle Senior Editor at Impremedia, which owns La Opinión and El Diario NY, some of the mostly read legacy media outlets devoted to the Hispanic community in the United States.

 

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EMMA CILLEKENS

Award-winning multimedia storyteller and strategist who is focused on where the media is going. A former performing artist in her native Australia, she managed to make a successful jump into a career in journalism — first as a cadet reporter in daily newspapers and later, hosting leading radio shows for the country's public broadcaster for several years.
Cillekens completed a master's program in Digital Journalism at New York University. She has worked with WNYC, The Wall Street Journal, Barron's, ProPublica and MIT Technology Review.

She co-created a podcast on artificial intelligence called In Machines We Trust with MIT Technology Review, which recently won the Newswomen's Club of New York Front Page award for audio investigative reporting. In her spare time she teaches ballet. 

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER

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NICOLE MARTORANA

She is a creative producer specializing in the performing arts. Her work spans theatre and live events, audio, video, and digital projects.  
Currently, Nicole is Head of Creative Development for Tituss Burgess’ production company, Ohh K Productions, and Producer at Five OHM Productions. Previously, she worked under the late Jim Houghton at Signature Theatre in New York. Over the past decade, she has worked with a roster of world-class artists, including: Martha Clarke, Will Eno, Athol Fugard, Michael Grief, A.R. Gurney, Katori Hall, Quiara Alegría Hudes, Bill Irwin, Alan Menken, Thomas Kail, Tony Kushner, and Naomi Wallace. Her projects have appeared at Signature Theatre, Carnegie Hall, and The Kennedy Center, and premiered on Billboard and PopSugar.
Nicole sits on the board of Spring Lake Productions, the production company of MacArthur fellow Martha Clarke.  

She holds a Bachelor's degree in English from Boston University and an MA in Text and Performance from King's College London and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.