Courtney Collier was raised in Northern Virginia and at the age of 16 moved to Connecticut to start her professional training at the Nutmeg Ballet Conservatory. After a year, she accepted the offer to train at the Houston Ballet, then returned to Virginia two years later and accepted a traineeship at Richmond Ballet. This is Courtney’s second season with RBII.
Education & Training
The Dance Academy of Loudoun, The Nutmeg Ballet Conservatory, Houston Ballet Professional Academy, Richmond Ballet Trainee
What inspired you to become a professional dancer?
Ever since I can remember I would dance around our family room and create little dances to show my family. For Christmas one year, my family bought tickets to see The Richmond Ballet perform The Nutcracker. I instantly fell in love and knew I’d want to be up on that stage one day!
What do you enjoy about being part of Richmond Ballet?
I really enjoy the supportive community Richmond Ballet has to offer between the Artistic Staff and Company Dancers. I love the diverse repertory we perform as well!
What do you like about living in Richmond?
Richmond is such a vibrant city with a beautiful cityscape! I love that there are so many fun places to explore.
What hobbies or activities do you enjoy doing off-stage?
I love traveling, spending time with my friends, and exploring everything Richmond has to offer!
Our professional company is made up of elite dancers from around the world who have helped earn Richmond Ballet critical acclaim. Dance/USA says Richmond Ballet is “a jewel among U.S. dance companies,” while The Washington Post calls it “a company to which dance fans everywhere ought to pay attention.” We’re proud of all that our company dancers bring to Richmond, and the world.
Richmond Ballet II, our second performing company, is comprised of talented young dancers between the ages of 18 and 22. RBII members perform their own diverse repertoire on tour across the Commonwealth as well as alongside the main company in mainstage productions.
RBII Apprentices are the top level of the Pre-Professional Division of School of Richmond Ballet. They receive an intensive training program, full scholarship, living stipend and are the bridge to RBII, our second company. Their time is divided between RBII rehearsals and the Trainee Program, performing in Lecture Demonstrations, Richmond Ballet Company mainstage performances and the end of season showcase performance with RB Trainees.
Richmond Ballet II Apprentices
Seated (L-R): Gianna DeMassio, Rachel Nash
Standing (L-R): Michael Duncan, Hannah MacLeod, Darius Mealy
Founded in 1993, the nationally recognized Richmond Ballet Trainee Program offers select advanced students a transitional experience to bridge the gap between the academic ballet setting and the world of professional dance. The Richmond Ballet Trainee Program is one of the few in this country that enables aspiring dancers to pursue formal dance training and gain valuable performance experience with a professional company.
Richmond Ballet Trainees - Second and Third Years
First Row- Senior Trainees: Kennady Jackson, Sarah Shaw, Gabrielle Goodson
Second Row: Katrina May Thomas, Sheridan Brown, Anna Orzulak, Parker Edmondson, Kendall Taylor, Ella Warren
Third Row: Carter Bush, Gavin Haas, Cade Bolz, Garrett Janiak, Daniel Miller
Richmond Ballet Trainees - First Year
First Row: Anne Pearson Gremer, Kristen Soyars Green, Isabella Vanik
Second Row: Gillian Carr, BriAnna Binzak, Savannah Wyatt, Claire Kehoe, Alexis Dawson, Kinsey Phelps, Chelsea Hacking
Third Row: Kiera Luci Dulog, Gillian Grossman, Oliver Gardner, Sydney Stutzman, Benjamin Piner
The Artistic Staff at Richmond Ballet is made up of international professionals who each bring incredible talent, expertise, and credentials to their respective roles. With impressive backgrounds and world experience, they offer a unique perspective that has helped shape our organization over the years. For over 40 years, Stoner Winslett has served as the founding Artistic Director of Richmond Ballet, the first major company of professional dancers in the Commonwealth of Virginia. She is one of the longest tenured artistic directors of a major ballet company and one of the country’s few female artistic directors. In June 2020, acclaimed choreographer Ma Cong joined Richmond Ballet as its first ever Associate Artistic Director.