Founder, Artistic Director
Egle Spokaite is having a stellar career as a Ballet dancer, Actress, Ballet Educator, Fashion model, public speaker across the continents.
Egle Spokaite grew up in Vilnius, Lithuania. After graduating from National Art School in 1989 she became the principal soloist of the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theater. Between 1994 and 1996 Egle became a winner of four international ballet competitions around the world (Perm, Russia Gold medal; Maya 94 Sant Peterburg, Russia Bronze medal; Helsinki International, Gold Medal; Nagoya International, Gold Medal). She has bestowed the highest National award of Lithuania. During her career between 1989 and 2011 Eglė Špokaitė performed leading classical and neoclassical roles such a “Zizel”, “Sleeping Beauty”, “Swan Lake”, “Copellia”, “Nutcracker“, “Romeo and Juliet”, “Carmen”, “Anna Karenina” and many more at the Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theater. She worked with the grand masters of the international caliber and prepared classical heritage roles with leading Mariinsky theater pedagogues: Ninel Kurgapkina, Kseniya Ter-Stepanova. Egle collaborated with the most prominent of art figures: Mstislav Rostropovich, Maya Pliseckaya, Gidon Kremer. Performed under the direction of choreographers Gerald Arpino, Georgy Aleksidze, Krzysztof Pastor, Boris Eifman, Alexei Ratmansky, Alla Sigalova, Eva Wicichovska, Kiril Simonov. As a guest artist, she created major roles in Georgian National Opera, Latvian National Opera, Finish National Opera, Karelian Music Theater.
In 2008, Egle graduated from Lithuanian Music and Theater Academy with the degree in choreography and pedagogy (ballet education) and started her teaching career. In 2009, Egle Spokaite co-founded first private ballet school in Vilnius, Lithuania. The school grew over the years to become the biggest ballet school in the Baltic countries, counting over 700 students.
In 2012, Egle Spokaite moved to live in Boston and subsequently moved to San Diego. In 2016, she founded the Ballet Institute of San Diego the school dedicated to Pure ballet, and the highest levels of ballet education.
The curious gallery of the images of Egle scattered all over the internet was spotted for your educational and informational, and emotional pleasure.
Renee Kester knew she wanted to be a professional dancer at age 12 after a gymnastics injury led her to find a more artistic way of athleticism. Renee was trained first in breakdancing by Hokuto Konishi, Ryan Conferido, and later contemporary with Jessie Riley, and became the youngest member of Entity and Sonya Tayeh’s company, dancing professionally at age 15. After getting serious about ballet and eventually got scouted at World Ballet Competition to be a trainee with Washington Ballet. Renee danced and toured with Houston Ballet before coming back to California to explore herself as a choreographer. Since then, she has danced and choreographed for several music videos, live shows, and commercials including Prius, Nair, Lenovo and Timberland. Renee has also been hailed for her YouTube videos and nominated for several awards, particularly for her and Phillip Chbeeb’s viral sensation video, ‘Slip’. She has been choreographing and teaching at many prominent Ballet Schools worldwide
Contemporary dancer and choreographer Jeremy Zapanta has professionally performed with Malashock Dance, San Diego Opera, San Diego Dance Theater, Traverse City Dance Project among others. Los Angeles native, he began his ballet training at Burbank School of the, graduated from the UC Irvine with a BFA in Dance Performance where he was a W. J. Gillespie and G. Kaufman scholar. He developed his love for contemporary dance after training at Northwest Dance Project: LAUNCH 8, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Alonzo King LINES Ballet and Complexions Contemporary Ballet programs. Jeremy is currently a dancer and choreographer with The Rosin Box Project.
Before the City Ballet, Geoff was awarded a full scholarship to the University of Arizona’s (BFA) dance program. In 2007, Geoff was a Vegas finalist of “So You Think You Can Dance”. The same year was honored by the Dance Masters of America organization as Mister Dance of America in 2008.
In 2010, he was cast as lead dancer opposite Rasta Thomas for two seasons with the Bad Boys of Dance in the hit show “Rock the Ballet” traveling around Europe. Back in San Diego, his focus turned to growing as a dance creator. Since 2012, Geoff has created nine world premiere ballets for City Ballet and been commissioned to build his pieces for other arts organizations around the country. Among these works were those to which Geoff was chosen to join the New York Choreographic Institute and workshop a new piece for the advanced students of the School of American Ballet.
Stretching and Body Conditioning
Yulia was born and raised in Russia and started Rhythmic Gymnastics training at the age of four and began competing at the age of six. Yulia was a competitive gymnast for eleven years until she went on to obtain a higher education in law. In 2008 she returned to the sport as a Gymnastics Coach at Star Gymnastics Studio in her hometown. In 2012 Yulia moved to the United States and again began coaching at Champion Rhythmic Gymnastics Academy. Yulia has a great deal of passion for working with young girls and enjoys helping them to achieve their goals and succeed.
Head Teacher for the youngest levels
Ballet. Contemporary. Chinese Dance
Ethan holds MFA degree from U. California, Irvine, and a M.S. in Electrical Engineering from the same school and calls himself a dancing engineer. Ethan received classical training in Chinese dance, Ballet and is a seasoned modern dancer. He was personally coached by Donald McKayle, a modern dance pioneer, to performing Mr McKayle’s original work. He trained modern dance with Bonnie Oda Homsey (M. Graham technique).
Ethan is also an explorer in the realm of dance and technology and showcased dance works created with motion capture and 3D rendering technologies.
Boys' Ballet Teacher
Jaroslav hails from the Czech Republic where he began his ballet training at the Theater of J.K. Tyl in Pilsen. He began his professional path with eight years of ballet education at the Dance Conservatory in Prague. His gateway to America was receiving a full scholarship to the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington DC where he completed two years in the pre-professional program. Jaroslav competed in the Tanzolymp Festival in Berlin in 2018 where he took the 3rd Prize in the Classical Pas de Deux category, then he was a finalist in YAGP New York in 2018 and the Korean International Ballet Competition in 2018. Jaroslav performed in the City Ballet of San Diego’s productions of Carmina Burana, Straw Feet, The Nutcracker, Hallelujah Junction, Who Cares?
Modern and Contemporary teacher
Besides inspiring Ballet Institute’s students to embrace the Contemporary Dance, Tanya Lewis is also the Assistant Artistic Director and choreographer of Visionary Dance Theatre and has been dancing with the company for years. Tanya graduated from UCSD with BA in Dance and a minor in Theater in 2012 and received the Stewart Prize in Choreography. She has performed with Eveoke Dance Theatre, Patricia Rincon Dance Collective, KO Dance Co, Monica Bill Barnes & Company, Eric Geiger, and Somebodies Dance Theater to name a few. As an independent artist Past projects and choreographies include Prism, You’re Late, Ebb & , and Between Two Ends which was selected as part of 40 North, an international dance film festival. Her choreography for a short film won the Silver Award for best choreography from International Film Awards.
Yoga. Body Conditioning
Embodying the yogi lifestyle and becoming a yoga teacher has given me the opportunity to share my gift of healing through yoga. My purpose is to wake up awareness by listening to your physical and emotional body needs through the practice of postures (asanas) breath work (pranayama) and meditation. In this process you will learn the connection between mind, body, and spirit to create a space to be yourself.
“In my classes, I like to create a sacred and safe space so you can embrace the healing that comes from your practice.”
I completed my 200 YTT, at Yandara Yoga Institute, in Todos Santos Baja Sur, Mexico.
Leslie Stevens is a performer, choreographer, teacher, writer whose choreography works are performed at the Walt Disney Concert Hall and 3-D Theatricals (www.3dtshows.org) to name a few. She has been teaching Musical Theatre and related disciplines at the universities, colleges, operas. Her full CV is worth exploring. Follow this link to have a glimpse of Leslie’s first class at The BISD