Local 12-year-old ballerina sets her sights on NYC

  • Written by Woodinville Weekly Staff

Woodinville Elementary student raising money to attend the renowned School of American Ballet Summer Course  
After watching the auditions of over 2,000 promising students recently, the School of American Ballet (SBA) in New York City announced the select list of those who have been invited to attend their prestigious and intensive Summer Course starting in June of this year. 

dancer1(Courtesy photo)McKenzie Wilson of Woodinville is one of only 200 students nationwide, between the ages of 12 and 18, who have been extended an invitation to attend this distinguished program. A dancer since age 2,  McKenzie’s abilities have gone on to exceed expectations and have now earned her a seat at a national table. 

“McKenzie strives for excellence both in her learning process and performances, regardless of the challenge. I believe McKenzie’s love for ballet and work ethic will help her develop into a professional ballet dancer.” – Viktoria Titova, Artistic Director/Ballet Master at Emerald Ballet Theatre and Former Ballerina with the Bolshoi Grigorovich Company

SAB holds auditions in approximately 20 cities around the United States every January and announces results in early February. This unique program offers students the chance to follow in the footsteps of ballet greats like Maria Kowroski, Daniel Ulbricht and Wendy Whelan. Led by Peter Martins and Kay Mazzo, the summer faculty includes many alumni and current members of the world-famous New York City Ballet, who share their knowledge and experience. 

During the Summer Course, students focus on varied curriculum to help prepare them for a career in classic ballet. Subject matter includes:

• Technique
• Pointe
• Adagio
• Character
• Ballroom 
• Pilates

“At SAB I will be learning from amazing teachers, some of which had worked with George Balanchine himself. George Balanchine is the founder of the world-renowned New York City Ballet and a famous choreographer. This is an amazing opportunity that not many ballet dancers get. When I heard that I had gotten into SAB I was super excited—it was a dream come true!” – McKenzie Wilson, Ballerina at Emerald Ballet Theatre

To support McKenzie’s goal of attending this once-in-a-lifetime event, please visit her GoFundMe page where she is working to raise $8,500 by 6/25/17.

Since age 2, McKenzie has been on a dance floor. What started as a childhood hobby of mirroring her teachers, learning a variety of styles from classical ballet to tap, and dreaming about being a prima ballerina quickly turned into a serious passion.

As the years have passed, McKenzie’s talents have become more evident and her list of accomplishments have grown.  

She has participated in the Youth America Grand Prix Seattle Semi-Finals 2015-2017 (recognized in the “Top 12” for her age category each year), 2016 & 2017 Youth America Grand Prix Finals in New York City with her ensemble from Emerald Ballet Theatre. She has also appeared in Emerald Ballet Theatre’s yearly productions of The Nutcracker, as well as productions of Cipollino, Peter & the Wolf, Paquita, and the 12 Dancing Princesses. 
McKenzie currently studies at Emerald Ballet Theatre under Viktoria Titova, an accomplished ballet artist who toured with the famous Bolshoi Ballet Grigorovich Company in Russia prior to moving to the Pacific Northwest.

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