The Ballet Academy of Central Florida was founded in 2000 by world-renowned dancer and director, Vasile Petrutiu, and "Orlando's ballerina" Heather Fryxell-Sanders. Upon opening, the Academy reached an enrollment of over 300 students in the first four months and continued with great success through its superior ballet training.
Known for providing the finest Vaganova ballet training in Central Florida, students have attained professional careers with prestigious companies including San Francisco Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Colorado Ballet, State Street Ballet, Ballet MET, and Louisville Ballet. The Academy's students annually receive scholarships to coveted dance schools and companies worldwide (totaling more than 30 schools and companies to date) among numerous accolades at international ballet competitions including the World Ballet Competition, IBC Jackson, American Ballet Competition, and Youth America Grand Prix.
Each year, students have performance opportunities through the Academy's annual Recital & through the Central Florida Ballet's professional programs including its Studio Company and acclaimed Nutcracker production.
Students can enroll in the Academy year-round. Please call 407-849-9942 for information on trial classes and programs.
Central Florida Ballet Academy Students: Where are they now?
SASHA DE SOLA
Now Soloist at the San Francisco Ballet
Sasha de Sola began her pre-professional ballet studies at the Central Florida Ballet Academy in 2000. Studying under the direction of CFB directors: Vasile Petrutiu, Vladimir Bykov, and Heather Sanders-Fryxell. She was featured as Maria (Clara) in the Central Florida Ballet's premiere of The Nutcracker among many featured roles in various productions including Paquita and Carnival to Save the Animals. In 2003, she began studies at the Kirov Ballet Academy in Washington, D.C. on full scholarship and joined the San Francisco Ballet in 2006 as an apprentice at the age of 17. Sasha was awarded the Silver Medal at the World Ballet Competition in 2008 (Professional Category). In 2012, she was promoted to Soloist with the San Francisco Ballet.
Now Training at the Royal Ballet School in London
Hannah began her pre-professional ballet studies at the Central Florida Ballet Academy in 2008. Studying under the direction of CFB directors, Vasile Petrutiu and Vladimir Bykov, she was featured as Maria (Clara) in the Central Florida Ballet's The Nutcracker and was awarded the Silver Medal at the World Ballet Competition. While attending CFB, she also furthered her contemporary training at studios including the Dance P.A.D. and later New Dimensions Dance Company. This Fall Hannah will continue studies for the 2nd year under full scholarship at the world's most prestigious school: the Royal Ballet School of London.
Now Corps de Ballet at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater Born and raised in Florida, JoAnna Schmidt began training at Central Florida Ballet when she was seven years old. After ten years under the instruction of Vasile Petrutiu, Heather Fryxell, and Vladimir Bykov, she graduated from the Central Florida Ballet Academy in 2010. In the fall of the same year, JoAnna joined the Graduate Program in the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre School on scholarship. After spending two years as a Grad student, JoAnna is excited to be in her 2nd season as a company member at Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. She has received additional training from summer programs at Miami City Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet Academy and Jacob's Pillow.
Now Corps de Ballet at State Street Ballet
(Meredith is in the turtle neck leotard in the video above)
Meredith was born in Westlake Village, California. Up until the age of eleven, Meredith dedicated the majority of her time to Competitive Gymnastics. At the age of ten, she won the eleven and under Level 8 Washington State Gymnastics Championship. After attending a Central Florida Ballet performance of the Ugly Duckling Meredith decided to pursue ballet full time. Meredith then joined the CFB Academy, Studio Company and competition team while taking private lessons under the direction of Vasile Petrutiu. At the World Ballet Competition USA, she received the 2008 Encouragement Award in the Pre-Professional Category and was awarded a scholarship to the Cincinnati Ballet in 2010. She then joined the full year program of the Kirov Ballet Academy of Washington, D.C on full scholarship. After her graduation, she joined the Joffrey Ballet as a trainee for two seasons and the following season joined Ballet MET. For the 2013-14 season, she is a member of the State Street Ballet in California.
Now Trains at the School of Pittsburgh Ballet Theater
Hunter Finnegan began his ballet training at the Central Florida Ballet Academy at a very early age. Originally training in gymnastics, he soon transferred his focus to ballet while also studying Irish dancing. He appeared as Fritz in the Central Florida Ballet's Nutcracker as well as being featured in many soloist roles of CFB productions including those in Peter and the Wolf, 9/11 An American Moment, The Toy Shop, and The Ugly Duckling. Since the 2011-12 school year, he has studied at the School of Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, where he has even instructed ballet classes.