Taylor Kelley

Winston-Salem, NC | Trainee | Joined Cincinnati Ballet in 2015

Taylor Kelley joins Cincinnati Ballet this year after spending a year as a trainee with The Washington Ballet. She started her training at In Motion Dance Center under the direction of Michelle Nicholson and was privileged to be coached by Guyla Pandi during her later years there. She studied in the High School program at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts before moving to San Francisco to train at the San Francisco Ballet School. She attended summer programs (2010 – 2014) at Houston Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, San Francisco Ballet School and Washington Ballet. Her repertoire includes Helgi Thomasson’s The Nutcracker, Septime Webre’s The Nutcracker, Sleepy Hollow and ALICE (in wonderland), George Balanchine’s Serenade, and Kirk Peterson’s Swan Lake. Her favorite role was performing Cygnets in Swan Lake alongside Washington Ballet company members because of the precision and focus that the iconic part of the ballet demands.

2015-2016 Sponsors: Elizabeth & Ken Kuresman and Christopher & Nancy Virgulak and Mr. Cedric W. Vogel

Touchet will never forget her 19th birthday. That was the day Victoria Morgan came to Pacific Northwest Ballet, to audition Touchet’s professional division. “Directors from everywhere auditioned us, but nobody ever picked me,” she says. “I remember thinking she wouldn’t like me anyway, so I told myself to just have fun, and after it was over, she said, ‘I’d like to talk to Janessa’.” Crossed wires with communicating Touchet’s acceptance of Morgan’s apprenticeship offer led to a planned spot with Memphis Ballet, but Morgan called one last time and Touchet was able to come to Cincinnati Ballet instead. “It was meant to be here. I started as an Apprentice and moved all the way through the ranks. I had always had my heart and mind set on Cincinnati Ballet.”

Professional History

  • InMotion Dance Center (2003-2015)
  • University of North Carolina School of the Arts (2011-2013)
  • San Francisco Ballet School (2013-2014)
  • The Washington Ballet: Trainee (2014-2015)
  • Cincinnati Ballet: Trainee

Favorite Roles

  • Cygnet in Swan Lake
  • Red Riding Hood in Sleeping Beauty
  • Balanchine’s Serenade
  • Duet from William Forsythe’s New Sleep
  • Columbine Doll in Ethan Stiefel’s The Nutcracker
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