Bios

Jennifer Cafarella

Jennifer Cafarella

ARTISTIC DIRECTOR
Ms. Cafarella has returned to Arizona after spending some time dancing in other parts of the world. As a child she studied at Ballet Arizona under Donald Dadey, Walnut Hill School for the Performing Arts and SUNY Purchase. Her career began with Ballet de Cali, Colombia, and continued with Granite State Ballet, Northern Ballet Theater, Portland Ballet, Ballet New England, and Jose Mateo's Ballet Theater.

Since she has been back in the valley, she has performed with Center Dance Ensemble, Terpsicore Dance Company and AZ Dance Group. She has been dance captain and most recently choreographed Carousel for Mesa Encore Theater. Ms. Cafarella has recently graduated from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee with her MFA in Dance.
Eric Rivera

Eric Rivera

CHOREOGRAPHER
A native of Puerto Rico, Eric Rivera earned his MFA in Choreography from SUNY Purchase College. During his performing career he danced with Ballet Hispanico of New York for 13 seasons where he helped to create over 20 original works. He also performed with Minnesota Ballet as principal dancer, Ballet Theater of Pennsylvania, Danza Jazz de San Juan and in the European tour of West Side Story. He has appeared as guest artist in different companies such as Connecticut Ballet, Thomas Ortiz Dance, Ballet Concierto de Puerto Rico, Westchester Ballet and Brooklyn Ballet. Eric had the pleasure of performing choreographies of Ann Reinking, Mark Morris, José Limon, Kenneth McMillan, Margot Sapinton, Graciela Daniel, Kevin Wynn, Vicente Nebrada, Talley Beatty and George Balanchine.
His works have been presented by Dance Iquail, Ashani Dance, Owensboro Dance Company, ACDFA Gala at Little Rock, AR, NY Summer Stage and the show They Called it Rock. His television appearances include PBS’ Setting the Stage, NBC’s 20th Hispanic Heritage Awards, Hispanic Day Parade with Brenda Blackmon, Puerto Rican Day Parade with Ernie Anastos and the documentary “Pedro Ruiz Home Coming” among others.
Mr. Rivera works as Assistant Professor of Dance at Virginia Commonwealth University. Eric taught at Western Kentucky University as an assistant professor where his works were funded by grants from WKU Research and Creativity Activity Program (RCAP). In his creative work as well as in his teaching, he is constantly exploring ways in which to dialogue with and share his Hispanic heritage. Mr. Rivera is an ABT Certified Teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT Teachers Training Intensive in Primary through level seven of the ABT National Training Curriculum.
Joan Rodriguez

Joan Rodriguez

CHOREOGRAPHER/DANCER
Joan Rodriguez was born in Havana, Cuba in 1992. After eight years of dance study he graduated as a ballet dancer and dance instructor at the School of Ballet in Cuba. From the time he was a student he felt a special interest in contemporary dance. After graduation he danced professionally with the Danza Abierta Company for three years. At the same time he collaborated with other dance companies. He has taken workshops taught by choreographers and teachers from such countries as France, Poland, Germany, Hungary and United States.
His first experience dancing in the United States was in June 2013 where, in collaboration with the University of Arts and Sciences in Alabama, he participated in a workshop of dance theater that was performed in the cities of Tuscaloosa and New York. He then started working for the Cuban dance company, Malpaso Dance. In this company he worked under the tutelage of Osnel Delgado, resident choreographer of the group and also had the opportunity to work with Trey McIntyre and Ron K. Brown, two American choreographers.
From 2013 to date Joan has danced in about fifteen cities around the United States and has danced in theaters and festivals such as the Joyce Theater and Guggenheim Museum in New York, The Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts, The Yard in Martha’s Vineyard and the Laguna Dance Festival in California, among others. He also participated in the Luminato Festival in Toronto, Canada. During this time he gained experience not only as a dancer, but also as a teacher, choreographer and even as artistic director. Joan recently decided to make his life in the United States and now lives in Phoenix where he hopes to continue contributing to the world of dance.
Alexander Patrick

Alexander Patrick

DANCER
Alexander Patrick, PhD recently relocated to Phoenix, from New Orleans, LA and is a Residential Faculty member in the Department of Social Sciences at Glendale Community College. Prior to and throughout his dancing timeline, he continued to enjoy being a theater performer. Alex began his dance training with the Baton Rouge Ballet a few years ago and has since danced for Of Moving Colors, the Cangelosi Dance Project, The Atlanta Dance Connection, Magnolia Dance Theatre, KM Dance Project, Scorpius Dance Theatre, Desert Dance Theatre, and CaZo Dance just to name a few. In addition, he has also danced for a number of charities, and is currently dancing as a new member of Convergence Ballet Company. He enjoys a large variety of dance styles and is very thankful for all of the amazing and inspirational teachers, dancers, choreographers, family, and everyone who has supported and nurtured his talents over the past years.
Anna Dobbins

Anna Dobbins

DANCER
Anna began her training at Belliston Academy of Ballet, under the direction of Jeannine Belliston, in Littleton, Colorado. She also spent summers training with Houston Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Boston Ballet, and Miami City Ballet. Anna is a recent graduate of Point Park University, with her BFA in dance. While at Point Park, Anna performed in works by Peter Merz, Ernest Tolentino, Emery LeCrone and in Nicholas Petrov’s Romeo and Juliet. Anna is excited for her first season with Convergence Ballet.
Antoinette Klimek

Antoinette Klimek

DANCER

Antoinette Klimek lived and trained throughout the United States, studying at Ballet Omaha, American Ballet Theatre, Visceral Dance Chicago, Lou Conte Dance Studio, Western Arkansas Ballet, and on scholarship with Dayton Ballet.  After graduating from the University of Chicago, where she studied on academic scholarship, she joined Chicago’s professional dance community as a classical and contemporary artist.  She holds a large repertoire of classical roles, her favorites including the title role in Giselle and Dulcinea and Mercedes in Don Quixote.  These she danced primarily with Ballet North as well as in guest artist appearances with Midwest Ballet Theatre and Western Arkansas Ballet.  She also worked in the contemporary genre through Geiger Dance Project, Jaxon Movement Arts and Elements Contemporary Ballet.  Antoinette moved to the Phoenix area in 2013 to pursue teaching opportunities and continues to train and perform locally.  She has since appeared as an independent artist as well as with Center Dance Ensemble and Terpsicore Dance Company.

Belinda DePasquale

Belinda DePasquale

DANCER
Belinda DePasquale began her training in Massachusetts and has trained with Maria Vegh, at Boston Ballet’s Dance Lab, and at David Howard’s Summer Dance Intensive, and trained privately under Daniel Baudendistel. This is Belinda’s fourth season dancing with Convergence Ballet. She has also danced with Terpsicore Dance Company and as a guest artist for Yuma Ballet Theater and Southwest Ballet Theatre. As a choreographer, she has worked with Bard College dance majors, Terpsicore Dance Company and as Assistant Choreographer to Daniel Baudendistel for Southwest Ballet Theater’s production of The Nutcracker. Belinda is Assistant Director and Ballet Mistress at Ballet Theatre of Phoenix. As a ballet instructor, she has also taught at Arizona School for the Arts, The School of Ballet Arizona, Scottsdale School of Ballet, and at Mesa Community College as Adjunct Professor of Dance. Belinda DePasquale is an ABT® Certified teacher, who has successfully completed the ABT® Teacher training Intensive in Pre-Primary through Level 3 of the ABT® National training Curriculum. Belinda is also certified in Progressing Ballet Technique (PBT).
Dustin Crumbaugh

Dustin Crunbaugh

DANCER
Dustin Crunbaugh, of Houston, TX, initially trained with Rose Thayer of Thayer Dance Academy in Orange until he joined Houston Metropolitan Dance Center’s Houston Met Too. He spent two years as a dance major at Point Park University where he worked with choreographers such as Alan Hineline, Margo Sappington, and Robert Battle. While in school he also performed in the award-winning tap show “The Rhythm Chefs” at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, VA, and with Neil Goldberg’s Cirque. He then completed his traineeship with Ballet Austin, in which the performed works by Stephen Mills, Septime Weber, and Dwight Rhoden. Dustin joined Houston Metropolitan Dance Company in 2005, trained at Alonzo King’s LINES Ballet School and in 2007 joined Luna Negra Dance Theater and continued his training with Hubbard Street Dance Center. Dustin is happy to be in his sixth season with The Big Muddy Dance Company under the direction of Brian Enos, and enjoys teaching for several dance schools around the greater St. Louis area.
Haydehn Tuipulotu

Haydehn Tuipulotu

DANCER

Haydehn started his dance training at Scottsdale Community College in Fall 2011, but has been dancing since 2008 at Washington High School. Since then he has performed with all over the valley and internationally with Scorpius Dance Theatre, CaZo Dance Company, SCC Moving Company, SCC S.A.J.E, and SCC Instinct Dance Corps. He has been in shows presented by Grace Gallagher, Liz Ann Hewitt, and Angel Castro.

Jadyn Reddy

Jadyn Reddy

DANCER
Jadyn Reddy graduated with a BFA degree from University of Arizona's School of Dance on a Fine Arts scholarship. She was a featured performer at UA Commencement and was awarded the "Future In Dance" graduate scholarship. UA's triad of ballet, modern and jazz prepared her for Principal roles in several exclusive UA commissioned works including Ben Stevenson's, "Four Last Songs" and Jerome Robbins, "Antique Epigraphs" where she worked with original cast members and famous repetiteur, such as Janie Parker and NYC Ballet's Helene Alexopoulos.
Jadyn's training is comprised of several intensive programs including three summers with American Ballet Theatre, River North Dance Chicago, BalletX, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, and Master Ballet Academy.
Miss Reddy is currently a 2016 company member with James Sewell Ballet in Minneapolis that has tours and projects in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Grand Rapids, New York City and Montana. Her early professional roles include working with Tony Award Winner, Ben Vereen, as a hired soloist, as well as lead roles in the Ernie Flatt Tribute concert and Jazz in Arizona Showcase. She has performed as a Principal with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra in the annual "Magic of Christmas" show and most recently in Myron Johnson's "Nutcracker (Not So) Suite" by James Sewell Ballet.
Lauren Ganther

Lauren Ganther

DANCER

Lauren was born and raised in Appleton, WI. She received her training from Jeanette Makaroff at the Markaroff Youth Ballet. She also studied at Milwaukee Ballet, Jose Mateo Ballet Theatre's extension program, and Batsheva Dance Company in Isreal.
She continued her training at The Boston Conservatory where she received her BFA in dance. At the conservatory she performed a lead role in Gerald Arpino's ballet "Light Rain" along with works by: Paul Taylor, Jose Limon, Larry Kegwin, and many others.
Lauren joined the Jose Mateo Ballet Theatre as an apprentice in 2013 and was promoted to the company in 2014. Lauren is now doing soloist work with the company. Lauren is very excited to join Convergence Ballet for her first season.

Nolan Austin

Nolan Austin

DANCER
Nolan Austin began his dance training at Barbara Driscoll's School of Ballet in El Paso, Texas. Under the teachings of Barbara Driscoll and Ann Gavit, Mr. Austin established a strong foundation in both ballet and modern technique as well as an enduring love for dance and the arts. After attending summer intensives with Washington Ballet and Ballet Austin, Mr. Austin was invited join Ballet Austin's year-round Professional Division Trainee program. There he gained professional experience training and performing with company members of Ballet Austin. Mr. Austin then went on to join the University of Arizona's prestigious School of Dance. Working with a variety of choreographers, from professionals to fellow students, Mr. Austin greatly broadened his understanding and mastery of dance. In addition to performing featured roles in ballet, modern, and jazz, he discovered a love and talent for choreography and many of his works were selected to perform in School of Dance main-stage productions. Upon completing school Mr. Austin joined Ballet Tucson where he performed roles both classical and contemporary. This is Mr. Austin's first season with Convergence Ballet and is thrilled to be a part of such a talented company.
Samantha Kelly

Samantha Kelly

DANCER
Samantha began her training at the Arizona Ballet School, then later at Scottsdale School of Ballet and Ballet Etudes. She has also spent time training at State Street Ballet, Orlando Ballet School, the Sarasota Cuban Ballet School, the Cuban National Ballet School, and most recently, under Daniel Baudendistel in Phoenix.
Samantha’s professional career has included dancing with the San Diego Ballet and Ballet Arizona, and is currently a performer for Showstoppers Interactive Entertainment and AZDance Group.
Taimy Miranda

Taimy Miranda

DANCER
Taimy Miranda was born in Havana, Cuba. She graduated from the National School of Modern Dance and Folklore as a Dancer and Professor. Taimy danced with Danza Contemporanea de Cuba and had the opportunity to collaborate with several notable national and international choreographers such as Mats EK, Itzik Galili, Pedro Ruiz, George Cespedes, Osnel Delgado. She has also danced with Malpaso Dance Company where she worked with Ronald K. Brown and Trey McIntyre. She has been featured in festivals such as Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts, Laguna Dance Festival in California, The Joyce Theater in New York, Luminato Festival in Toronto, Guggenheim Museum in New York, Dance Place Theater in Washington DC, The Yard in Martha’s Vineyard.

Past Choreographers

- Keven Jenkins
- Dana Metz
- Nicole Olson
- Diane McNeal Hunt
- Tracy Marion
- Ryan Orion Beck
- Rusty Toth
- Thom Dancy

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