Artists

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James Sewell,
Artistic Director
(32nd Season)

A Minneapolis native, Mr. Sewell moved to New York and studied at the School of American Ballet with David Howard, and began performing with ABT II. He was a lead dancer with Feld Ballets/NY for six years and has performed as a guest artist with the New York City Ballet, Zvi Gottheiner and Dancers, and Denishawn. He has choreographed more than 100 ballets for companies in the United States and around the world, and collaborated with countless other artists across disciplines.

Projects include the New York City Ballet’s Choreographic Institute, the New York State Council on the Arts grant to create “Independence In Dependence” for Feld Ballets/NY; “Aida” (1998) for the Minnesota Opera and 11 other opera companies; James Sewell Ballet’s “Amahl and the Night Visitors” (1995); “Musical Toys” (1996) and “Nutcracker: The Untold Story” (1997) for the Minnesota Orchestra; “She Loves Me” (2005) and “1776” (2007) for the Guthrie Theater; and "Titicut Follies" (2017) with acclaimed documentarian Frederick Wiseman. James also has received commissions, including “Schoenberg Serenade” (2006) and “Passions” (1998), a work with composer Augusta Read Thomas, for the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra; “Metamorphosis” (2004) for the Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus; “Awedville” (2004) for the Wharton Center for Performing Arts and “Turf” (2006) for the Minnesota Orchestra. Mr. Sewell received a Bush Foundation Artist Fellowship (2002), a Choo-San Goh Award for Choreography from the Choo-San Goh & H. Robert Magee Foundation (2006), and a McKnight Artist Fellowship for Choreography (2007). He is a past trustee of Dance/USA and a past director of the American Composer’s Forum.


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Eve Schulte,
Executive Director
(13th Season)

Eve is a dance artist and administrator based in Minneapolis, MN. She grew up training in ballet and modern at Minnesota Dance Theatre, and transitioned to company member in 2007. In 2009, she joined James Sewell Ballet, where she has also served as Artistic Associate (2017-2020) and currently as Executive Director.

She has collaborated with physical theater group Live Action Set, which is pioneering innovative immersive and interactive moving stories. Some of her more memorable performances include roles in Glenn Tetley’s Mythical Hunters; Leralee Whittle’s Displacement Activity; Live Action Set's Unset; and Sharon Eyal & Gai Behar’s Killer Pig. In the summertime, she often teaches at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp, and has twice served as co-director for their International Ballet Ensemble. She has been teaching various forms of dance for over a decade, and has performed or taught in France, Germany, Denmark, Canada, nationally in 17 states, and in 30+ Minnesota communities. Her choreographic work Any Offered None, developed as part of JSB's Ballet Works Project, was nominated for a 2016 MN Sage Award for Outstanding Performance. Eve also holds a B.A. in English from the University of Minnesota. “Dance should allow people to shed and discover many things about themselves, whether participating on stage or from the audience. The ways in which it can permeate one’s heart are boundless.”


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Chloe Duryea,
Artist & Rehearsal Director
(5th Season)

Chloe received her early dance training near her hometown of Haslett, Michigan. Upon attending the American Ballet Theatre (ABT) Summer Intensive in Detroit, she was selected by ABT as a National Training Scholar in 2007 and 2008 and subsequently attended the ABT Summer Intensive for two years as a full-scholarship student. Chloe graduated from Indiana University’s Jacob School of Music with Highest Distinction, earning a Bachelor of Science in Ballet with an Outside Field of Kinesiology. While dancing with Indiana University Ballet Theatre, she was featured in Twyla Tharp’s Sweet Fields, Dwight Rhoden’s Dear Frederic, and as Princess Aurora in Act II and Act III of The Sleeping Beauty. After graduating from IU, Chloe was given the opportunity to perform George Balanchine’s Nutcracker Pas de Deux and Robert Rodham’s Snow Scene with the Indianapolis School of Ballet. Chloe then moved to Chicago, where she spent two years as a company dancer with Elements Contemporary Ballet, and performed as a guest artist in the Ruth Page Civic Ballet Nutcracker.


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Ashley Chin-Mark,
Artist & Marketing Associate
(4th Season)

Ashley discovered her passion for dance at the Hawkins School of Performing Arts in Folsom, CA under Deirdre Hawkins and Erin Hogan. Upon receiving a Youth America Grand Prix scholarship from Adam Sklute, she trained with Ballet West, then Ballet Austin, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Oklahoma City Ballet, and Hubbard Street Dance Chicago. Her dance credits include "Titicut: Follies - The Ballet" in the Festival de Danse de Cannes, Nu·topia: Tour the Mystery!, HATCH: Danceworks in Progress, RDT’s Emerge, Utah Ballet, SACDT’s Sign of Life, and Lexus GS Japan’s Kaleidoscope Commercial. Ashley is the Director's Assistant for Incheon Global Campus
- International Ballet Summer Intensive, a Performing Associate Instructor for University of Utah - Ballet Summer Intensive, and a former faculty member for Ballet West Academy. She has taught/choreographed at St. Paul Ballet, Reif Dance Center, Co.Mo. Collective, Northern Force Dance Company, Foothills Dance Academy, and Hawkins School of Performing Arts. Ashley graduated from the University of Utah with a Ballet, B.F.A. and a Strategic Communications, B.S. She holds certifications in ABT® National Training Curriculum, Progressing Ballet Technique, and University of Minnesota’s UX/UI Design Program.


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Da'Rius Malone,
Artist & Resident Choreographer
(4th Season)

Da’Rius Malone, from Chicago, IL, began his training under the direction of August Tye at Hyde Park School of Dance. Da’Rius is a 2014 graduate of The Chicago High School for the Arts (ChiArts), where he won the award for Scholar-Artist and had the privilege to perform works from leading Chicago dance companies such as DanceWorks Chicago, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Muntu Dance Theater, and Joffrey Ballet. Da’Rius continued his training at The Boston Conservatory at Berklee. Da'Rius is a 2018 graduate with his BFA in Contemporary Dance Performance with an Emphasis in Ballet. After his time at The Boston Conservatory Da’Rius was asked to join Jon Lehrer on his European Tour as a guest artist. After, Da’Rius then became a company member at James Sewell Ballet. Da'Rius has performed works by Doug Varone, Joshua Manculich, Merce Cunningham, and Danny Buraczeski. He has also danced in several world premieres of choreography by Gabrielle Lamb, MADBOOTS and Yury Yanowsky. Da’Rius has performed excerpts of Don Quixote and Raymonda restaged by former Boston Ballet principal dancer Adriana Suarez and Gianni DiMarco. Da'Rius has also trained with the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company (Israel), Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Alonzo King Lines Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Ballet Austin, Deeply Rooted Dance Theater and 10 Hairy Legs. Da’Rius wants to use his dance education and experience as a professional concert dancer to create a platform to make a positive impact in life.


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Arimee Gambill,
Artist & Content Creator
(4th Season)

Arimee was born and raised in Grand Rapids, MN, and received her dance training at Reif Dance, with summertime training at Royal Winnipeg Ballet School, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, San Francisco Conservatory of Dance, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. She appeared in a number of JSB/Reif Dance collaborations since age 11.


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Jarod Boltjes,
Artist & Company Liaison
(3rd Season)

Jarod is a Minnesota native from Adrian, MN. He started his dance training at Saint Mary’s University where he also obtained his BA Degree in Dance Performance and Studio Art. His formal dance training began at the age of 18 in college where he had the opportunity to train and perform internationally with Rose Bruford College in the U.K. and The Gaiety School of Acting in Ireland. Upon arrival to the Twin Cities, Jarod has worked with several local companies; Contempo Physical Dance, Twin Cities’ Ballet, Collide Theatrical, and St. Paul Ballet to name a few. If he is not in the dance studio, you can find him leading class as a certified barre and yoga instructor or under the big top tent coaching and choreographing for Circus Juventas.


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Connor Simone,
Apprentice
(1st Season)

Connor Simone is a Twin Cities dancer, performing artist, and IT specialist. He received training at Stage Left Dance Center, Saint Paul Conservatory for Performing Artists, the TU Dance School, and the University of Minnesota. Connor has previously danced with TU Dance and Threads Dance Project. Additionally, he has performed works by artists such as Marcus Willis, Kjara Wurst, Gregory Dolbashian, Berit Ahlgren, Gregory Vuyani Maqoma, Will Couture, Carl Flink, Sidra Bell, and Maurya Kerr among others. Alongside performing, Connor has worked for several arts organizations across the Twin Cities in IT and web development and is also teaching ballet and modern classes for Eleve’ Performing Arts Center. He will receive his BA in Dance with a minor in Computer Science from the University in the Fall of 2021.


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Hettie Stern,
Guest Artist
(2nd Season)

Hettie grew up dancing with the Hopkins Youth Ballet in Minnesota. She graduated magna cum laude from Carleton College with a BA in Cognitive Science. While at Carleton, Hettie performed with the college’s modern dance company, Semaphore and modeled for Jennifer Bader’s Ballet in Motion: A Moving Visual Guide to Performing Ballet Technique. After college, Hettie trained for a year with the Limón Dance Company and interned with the José Limón Dance Foundation in New York City. Other training highlights include summer intensives at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, and Ballet Austin. Hettie is currently pursuing an MEd in Learning Technologies at the University of Minnesota. She is also an avid photographer. Hettie has proudly performed with JSB in Amahl and the Night Visitors.


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Rachel Seeholzer,
Guest Artist
(1st Season)

Rachel Seeholzer was born and raised in Los Angeles, California where she first began her classical dance training at age nine. She set her focus in ballet after high school and traveled to further her training in cities such as Chicago, Seattle, San Francisco, Charlotte and Richmond. Rachel began dancing professionally in 2014 and has had the pleasure of working with the Charlottesville Ballet, The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, RVA Dance Collective, Oakland Ballet, Virginia Repertory Theatre, Stavna Ballet, and Ballet Co.Laboratory. She has worked with acclaimed choreographers and teachers such as Daniel Duell, Sheila Rozann, Alonzo King, Patricia McBride, Suzanne Farrell, Kim Jones, Graham Lustig, Starr Foster, Colby Damon, and Maggie Small. Rachel began choreographing in 2011 when she set a contemporary ballet on the trainees and apprentices of the Charlotte Ballet; again in 2013 when she choreographed and staged the production of The Nutcracker on the Degas Dance Studio in Encino, California; and then again in 2017 when she set a neoclassical ballet on the trainees of the Charlottesville Ballet. Rachel has been teaching for over a decade in California, Virginia and Minnesota, working with students (ages 3-adult) at more than a dozen dance studios, schools, and academies.


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Michael Walters,
Guest Choreographer
"New Works" ("TripTych")

Michael is originally from Detroit, Michigan. He attended The Juilliard School in New York City before dancing professionally with Nederlands Dans Theatre, Frankfurt Ballet, and Lyon Opera Ballet. During that time he has had the pleasure of working with an array of influential choreographers and perform on stages around the world. He then decided to take a sharp turn to redirect his artistic pursuits in the direction of theatrical arts. He attended and graduated from the prestigious Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, England. Since then Michael has had the pleasure of performing on stages in the West End of London as an actor. He is delighted to be a guest artist with James Sewell Ballet this season and make his return to the stage as a dancer in over ten years!


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Kerry Parker,
Guest Choreographer
"New Works" ("Holy")

Born and raised in St Paul, MN Kerry has been a company member of Pacific Northwest Ballet, Vienna State Opera Ballet, and Ballet of the Dolls. Kerry spent her early years studying with Jo Savino, Janet Smith, Frank Bourman, Bonnie Mathis, Lirena Branitski, Sylvia Bolton, David Voss, and Loyce Houlton. She also spent time studying at Milwaukee Ballet School, School of American Ballet, and Pacific Northwest Ballet School. Kerry brings nearly twenty years of teaching experience, and an extensive knowledge of ballet, to students of all ages. She also teaches the Gyrotonic Expansion System.


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Roots in the Sky Choir,
Collaborating Artists
"Earth Tomes"

Beyond professional musicians, members of Roots in the Sky include current and future doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, professors, dieticians, software developers, and business men and women, as well as chemical, biological, biomedical, mechanical, and industrial engineers. We are united by our art, community and deep sense of place.

CONDUCTOR— Andrew Major
ASSISTANT CONDUCTOR — Logan Henke
ORGANIST — Matthew O’Sullivan
SOUND DESIGNER — Luke Scheeler

THE CHOIR — Hannah Anderson, Isobel Anthony, Hannah Bares, Kaleb Biladeau, Kayla Bojkovsky, Mandy Bowker, Andrew Cantley, Cordelia Cluett, Derek Conder, Adam Copeland, Emily Copeland, Patrick Fischer, Lukas Graf, Erin Henke, Logan Henke, Eli Isbell, Ana Jarrett, Michael Juel, Rachel Juel, Annie Marshall, Natalie Mills, Robert Nack, Alan Newbold, Matthew O'Sullivan, Jack Reeder, Cara Robertus, Madison Stone, John Zirkle


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Andrew Major,
Director and Conductor of Roots in the Sky
"Earth Tomes"

Andrew is the artistic director and conductor of Roots in the Sky (formerly the Aoide Chamber Singers), a Bozeman-based chamber choir he founded in his first year at Montana State University where he earned a B.A. in Music, a B.S. in Cell Biology & Neuroscience, and an Honors College Baccalaureate, summa cum laude. In 2016, Andrew was honored with an MSU Award for Excellence, awarded to 40 of MSU’s top seniors for academic excellence, campus leadership, and community service. At this time, Andrew was also awarded the Torleif Asheim Community Involvement Award which recognizes one student from each college for community involvement.


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Heidi Eckwall,
Lighting Designer
"Earth Tomes"

Heidi Eckwall has over thirty years of experience designing lighting for live performance.  She has toured nationally and internationally with artists including Nora Chipaumire, Urban Bush Women, Compagnie Jant-Bi, Margaret Jenkins, HIJACK, Rosy Simas Danse, BodyCartography Project and Emily Johnson/catalyst.  Heidi is based in Minneapolis, MN, where she collaborates with dance, theater, music and puppetry artists. Heidi holds a BA in Middle Eastern and South Asian Studies from the University of Minnesota. She has designed and taught lighting at Colorado College since 2002.


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Paul Herwig,
Projection Designer
"Earth Tomes"

Paul Herwig (Live Animation Projection Design) Paul is a founding Artistic Co-Director of the dance and theater company, Off-Leash Area, which under the direction with his director/partner Jennifer Ilse, is now celebrating its 23rd year. Paul is a McKnight Theater Fellow, and with Jennifer is a one-time City Pages Artist of the Year. With Off-Leash Area his production work has received Ivey and Sage Awards, and has been listed in the local press Best of the Year lists 21 times. Paul also helms the community’s sole open juried interdisciplinary performance series focusing on local mid-career artists, The Right Here Showcase, now in it’s seventh year. Paul, a graduate of the internationally renown Lecoq School of Movement and Theater in Paris (1981-1983), has spent four decades performing lead roles, designing sets, and creating original work. In the 1980’s Paul performed throughout rural France, at the Szkene Theater in Budapest, and to festivals in Avignon, France and Edinburgh, Scotland, and with touring companies travelling across 25 US States, at a range of venues from the Painted Bride in Philadelphia to Theater Artaud in San Francisco. In the 1990’s in Canada he worked as a freelance actor at the Teatre Francais de Toronto, the Great Canadian Theater Company in Ottawa, and on the Canadian Fringe from Vancouver to Halifax. For the past five years Paul has transformed his scenic design practice, from using unusual scenic materials like wax, tin foil, burlap & rope, and fluorescent tubes, to live digital design, creating multi-layered collages of animated and projected imagery wit tablets and projectors, for dance, theater, and events. His new event design company is Future Projections, www.futureprojections.net.


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Ivan Konev,
Guest Pianist
"New Works Project"
"Earth Tomes" (Cowles Shows)

Ivan Konev was born in Ukraine and educated in Moscow. Upon completion of his undergraduate degree, he came to the United States to study and in 2010 received his Doctoral Degree in Piano Performance from the University of Minnesota. As a soloist, Dr. Konev has won prizes in a number of international competitions, including the Andorra International Piano Competition and the Corpus Christi International Piano Competition. He appears regularly in solo and chamber music concerts in the United States and Europe, performing not only standard repertoire, but also newly composed or rarely played masterpieces. Dr. Konev is on the faculty of the University of Wisconsin/ River Falls (UWRF) and is a Founder and Artistic Director of the UWRF Piano Festival & Competition. ivankonevpiano.com


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Hans Kruger,
Guest Composer
"New Works Project"

Hans’ childhood passion for creativity materialized through making visual art and VHS productions for fun as a child. This developed into a passion for music by learning to play guitar during his teenage years, and producing songs through early adulthood. Hans earned an A.S. in Sound Design in 2017, and finished his undergrad with a B.A. in Media Production at Metropolitan State University. As a former founding member and performer with the Twin Cities group “Black Market Brass,” and as a solo artist, Hans has collaborated with various local and national artists. Hans started working at GT Artistry in 2014 and collaborated closely with local choreographer Paula Mann and Gerry developing the sound score and producing “PIE EQUALS SQUARE.” Hans is currently incorporating his passion for sound and cinematography into an upcoming visual media project underway at GT Artistry called "The Craft."


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Laura Sewell,
Guest Cellist
"New Works Project"
"Earth Tomes"

Laura Sewell has performed as a cellist in Europe, Asia, Canada, and throughout the United States. Locally she has performed with the Minnesota Orchestra, Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Minnesota Opera, Guthrie Theatre, Minnesota Beethoven Festival, Dale Warland Singers, Cantus, and numerous chamber ensembles. Radio appearances have included “A Prairie Home Companion” and “Saint Paul Sunday.” Laura was the founder of the award-winning Lark Quartet, which was the bronze medal winner in the Banff International String Quartet Competition. She has performance degrees from the Juilliard School and the Cleveland Institute of Music. Currently she is the Associate Director of the International Cello Institute and is a 2020 recipient of an Artist Initiative Grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board to record a CD of works by Minnesota composers for cello and piano.


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Joe Strachan,
Guest Composer
"New Works Project"

Joe Strachan is a pianist, composer, and improviser based in St. Paul, MN. Recent works include Mixed Blood Theater: The Most Beautiful Home...Maybe, Tethered by Elayna Waxse commissioned by Threads Dance Project, and Ananya Dance Theater: Altars of Our Sacred Geometries. Joe is a 2020 Next Step Fund award winner and a 2013 graduate of the University of Minnesota.


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Soubrette,
Guest Singer
"New Works Project"

Soubrette is the interdisciplinary art-pop persona of singer Nelle June Anderson. Anderson performs in films, operatic productions, and the underground punk/jazz scene, and is developing new perspectives in performance art and improvisatory practices with an expanding collective. Recent highlights include singing Ramiro in Motezuma (Vivaldi/Maute, The Bach Society of MN+Ensemble Caprice+Early Music Seattle), releasing her first studio album, Any Dead Coquette, and opening for Dosh at the Turf Club. Anderson began developing Soubrette through experimental interpretations of Bellini, Poulenc, and Debussy vocal pieces arranged for piano, loop pedal, and voice (Center for Performing Arts, New Works Residency). She studied music and poetry at Bard College (NY) and operatic performance at Oberlin in Italy and OperaWorks. www.soubrettemusik.com / @soubrettemusik


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Hector Cortes,
Video Producer

Hector is the CEO and Partner of Snack Media Group, a creative engine with the goal of making snack-able content to help people and businesses reach their audiences. People-centric and brand-building are the names of the game. Hector has helped JSB with various marketing projects since 2014 and most recently crafted our outdoors “Winter” romp into a joyful artistic piece. He has previously worked with Hecco and Woodchuck USA, has a B.S. in Applied Economics, Business Administration and Management from the University of Minnesota, and originally hails from Rochester, MN.