Arif Toleugazin

Originally from Kazakhstan, Arif began his ballet training at the age of 11, at the iconic Vaganova Ballet Academy in St. Petersburg, Russia where he studied under Denis Matvienko.
 Graduating from VBA in Classical Ballet and Pedagogy in 2022, Arif was invited to join both the Mariinsky and the Bolshoi Ballet, a dream he had since he was a little boy. However, watching the horrors of the Ukraine war unfold while being wholeheartedly anti-war, Arif realized he couldn’t in good conscience begin his ballet career in an aggressor country. Interested in getting exposure to a variety of American ballet styles, he auditioned for San Francisco Ballet School and received the prestigious Keith White Memorial Scholarship (awarded by Thomas E. Horn, President of the San Francisco War Memorial and Performing Arts Center and Bob A. Ross Foundation).
 Graduating from SFBS in 2023, Arif was invited to join Ballet RI. He describes his new ballet home as a dynamic and artistically exciting place to be.

Nia Lessard

Raised in Framingham, MA, Nia began her ballet training at the Boston Ballet School at age 4. She continued her training at Northeast School of Ballet, and later with principal dancers Erica Cornejo and Carlos Molina. She also explored her contemporary movement during her summers at BalletX, Arts Umbrella, and with choreographer Juliano Nunes at Orsolina28. In 2020 she was accepted into Pacific Northwest Ballet’s Professional Division, where she performed with the company in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker and Kent Stowell’s Swan Lake. After graduating from the Professional Division, Nia joined Grand Rapids Ballet as an Apprentice for the 2022/23 season. While at GRB she performed in numerous corps de ballet roles including George Balanchine’s Serenade and Who Cares?, as well as demi-soloist roles in James Sofranko’s A Dreamer and Penny Saunders’ Jump Cut. 

Jayden Towers

Born in South Florida, Jayden Towers began studying dance at the age of three at her parents’ dance studio. Jayden has attended intensives with Miami City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, the Harid Conservatory, and Ellison Ballet. In 2019, she was accepted into the Harid Conservatory’s year round program. From then on, she trained on scholarship at Fort Lauderdale Youth Ballet, Alberta Ballet School, and Ellison Ballet. 

In 2021, she awarded third place in the contemporary and classical category at Youth America Grand Prix, as well as receiving an invite to attend finals. In previous years, Jayden has preformed roles including Kitri(Don Quixote), La Vivandiere, Queen of Dryads(Don Quixote), Soloist in A Fine Line by Juan Rodriguez, and many others. Jayden has had the privilege to train under Aram Manukyan, Edward Ellison, Evgenia Singur, Bat Udval, German Dager, Magaly Suarez, Victoria Schneider, Misha Tchoupakov, and Juan Rodriguez.

Chloe Olson

Chloe grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, beginning her early training at Larry Cervi’s before enrolling in Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School at the age of 7. She continued to train in the school all the way through to the Graduate program under the directorship of Terrence S. Orr and Susan Jaffe. In her time there, she enjoyed opportunities to perform with the main company and featured roles in the school productions. In 2021, she was awarded a grant from the National Society of Arts and Letters. Additionally, Chloe has attended summer programs at Chautauqua Dance Institution, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Houston Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, and the Washington Ballet. She is excited to be dancing with Ballet RI for a second season!

Alexa Kearnan

Alexa is from Uxbridge, Massachusetts where she trained at Deane Dance Studio in Mendon, Massachusetts. Alexa started dancing with Ballet RI as a trainee during the 2021/2022 season. Prior to joining Ballet RI, Alexa went to the Boston Ballet summer intensive and recently Hubbard Street Summer Intensive. 

Alexa has been fortunate to have performed many roles as a trainee with Ballet RI. Some of her favorites include performing in Yury Yanowskiy’s world Premiere Es muß sein! and “Gwendolyn” in Gwendolyn the Graceful Pig. She is very excited for the upcoming works with Ballet RI for the 2023/2024 season! 

Erin Diehl

Erin Diehl was born and raised in Annapolis, MD. Throughout her training she studied numerous styles of dance spanning from ballet, to musical theatre, to Irish dance. Diehl performed with Chesapeake Ballet Company, Teelin Irish Dance Company, Dance Academy of Severna Park, and Edna Lee Dance Studio before graduating high school in 2018. Her Summer training credits include Boston Ballet, The Radio City Rockettes, and Gelsey Kirkland Academy of Ballet. 

Following graduation Diehl continued her education at The University of Utah, earning a BFA in ballet as well as minors in Korean Studies and Linguistics. Features roles include Paquita and Medora (Le Corsaire). Most recently she danced as a trainee with the Nashville Ballet during the 22-23 season. She has had the privilege to work with choreographers such as Maria Konrad, Susan Jaffe, Penny Saunders, Melissa Nolen-Bobick, and Mollie Sansone.

Elena DeGuzman

Elena deGuzman began her ballet training at age three in California. She trained at Philadelphia Dance Theatre, The Washington School of Ballet, The Rock School for Dance Education, and Philadelphia Ballet. She has attended various summer programs, including American Ballet Theatre and Boston Ballet. She has been awarded scholarships to the Chautauqua institute summer intensive, the Rock School for Dance Education, and most recently the trainee program at Philadelphia Ballet. Elena has performed works by George Balanchine including Serenade, Walpurgisnacht, and Who cares. During her time at Chautauqua Elena received a choreographic award and had her works showcased on stage multiple times.  

During her time as a trainee at Philadelphia Ballet, Elena performed as a flower, Spanish dancer, and tea dancer in George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, waltz girl in Ben Stevenson’s Cinderella, as well as touring with the company for Angel Corella’s Swan Lake. 

Grace Campbell

Originally from Duxbury, Massachusetts, Grace Campbell began her serious ballet training at South Shore Ballet Theatre, studying for five years under George Birkadze, Donna Silva, Marthavan McKeon, and Stephanie Moy. In 2017, she furthered her training in Erica Cornejo and Carlos Molina’s pre-professional daytime program in Boston. After the 2018 Summer Intensive, Kansas City Ballet School’s Daytime program invited her to stay year-round where she remained for two years studying under Grace Holmes, Racheal Nye, Kimberly Cowen, and Dmitry Trubchanov. Upon graduation in 2020, she joined Kansas City Ballet’s Trainee program for the 2021/2022 season. In 2022, she attended Tulsa Ballet’s Summer Intensive and was invited to their Trainee Program for the following season. Last season, she was a trainee at Ballet RI, and she’s excited about her recent promotion to Junior Apprentice, allowing her continued dancing with the company! 

Massiel Valderrama

Massiel Valderrama was born in the state of Lara, Venezuela, graduated in 2016 from the “María Teresa Alford School”  

Valderrama joined the “Teresa Carreño” theater company in Caracas, Venezuela, in 2017 

In 2018, Valderrama moved to Lima, Peru to begin his contract with the company “Ballet Municipal de Lima” where he spent four years of his career 

In 2021, he moves to Miami, where he begins to be part of the company “Dimensions Dance Theater of Miami” 

Throughout his career, Valderrama has interpreted different roles as corps de ballet and soloist 

Some are: Snow Queen and Arabian Dance of The Nutcracker, Lilac Fairy of The Sleeping Beauty, Spanish Dance, Big Swans and Waltz soloist of the Swan Lake, Pas de trois of the Le Bayadere, Juanita and Alicia by the choreographer Septime Webre, Lecuona and Adiemus by the choreographer Yanis Pikieris, Light Rain by the choreographer Gerald Arpino, among others.