Charlotte Ballet has added five new dancers to the first company: Drew Grant, Lexi Johnston, Michael Matthews, Peter Mazurowski and Shaina Wire! Read below if you want to find out who these dancers are and why they are so excited to start their first season with Charlotte Ballet!
ABOUT | Drew is from Devon, PA and this will be his first year at Charlotte Ballet. He has been dancing since he was 12 years old, but outside of dance, Drew enjoys reading, taking long walks, and lounging around with his cat Lucas.
BALLET FAVORITES | Drew has enjoyed every role he’s performed, even the ones he didn’t enjoy at the time, because they all brought him to where he is today as a dancer. His favorite choreographers include Balanchine, Tudor, Macmillan, Forsythe, Bausch, Tharp, Maillot, Pickett, Wheeldon, Hampson, Dawson, Lange, Neenan, Naharin, Rhoden and Seiwert.
ADVICE FOR ASPIRING DANCERS |”Perseverance is key. There’s going to be plenty of disappointment, but if you work smart and believe in yourself, you tend to end up where you’re meant to be.”
“What I find most exciting about joining Charlotte Ballet is the diverse repertoire we perform. It’s my first season, so I’m excited for all the programs and just getting to know all the dancers.” – Drew Grant
ABOUT | Lexi is thrilled to start her first season with Charlotte Ballet. Born in Kilgore, TX, Lexi has been dancing since she was three years old. Besides dancing, Lexi also enjoys practicing yoga, reading, shopping and spending time with family and friends. If she weren’t dancing, she would be a physical therapist.
BALLET FAVORITES| Her favorite ballet is Serenade by George Balanchine, and her favorite choreographer is Dwight Rhoden. Out of all the roles she has ever danced, she has most enjoyed performing The Sugar Plum Fairy in Nutcracker.
ADVICE FOR ASPIRING DANCERS | “Work hard, stay positive and always keep an open mind. Dance can lead you in many different directions, so enjoy where it takes you, how you get there, and the people you meet along the way.”
“I am most excited to dance alongside extremely talented dancers who embrace each other like family, while performing a challenging and diverse repertoire for the Charlotte community.” – Lexi Johnston
ABOUT | Michael was born in Moorestown, NJ and has been dancing since he was five years old. This is his first season with Charlotte Ballet. He dances because he loves creating art with his body. He says being on stage and sharing his emotions and joy through movement is the most gratifying experience, and he loves the connection he shares with the audience.
BALLET FAVORITES | His favorite ballet is Serenade by George Balanchine and his favorite choreographer is William Forsythe.
ADVICE FOR ASPIRING DANCERS | “Ballet is a form of self expression through dance. Don’t get discouraged by any limitations you place on yourself. Artistry is limitless!”
“The company members all demonstrate incredible versatility in their movement in such a broad range of contemporary and classical movement. It’s inspiring as a dancer to be surrounded by such artistry.” – Michael Matthews
ABOUT | Peter is from Bow, NH and has been dancing since he was six years old. This will be his first season dancing with Charlotte Ballet. He says he loves dancing because it gives him a voice when he can’t find his own. On his days off, Peter likes to explore the city.
BALLET FAVORITES | His favorite ballet is The Vertiginous Thrill of Exactitude by William Forsythe, who is also his favorite choreographer. His favorite role he has ever performed is Billy in Billy Elliot: The Broadway Musical where he performed the lead for a year and a half!
ADVICE FOR ASPIRING DANCERS | “Get out of your own head. Dancing feels so much better when you’re not overthinking.”
“What I find most exciting about joining Charlotte Ballet is the repertoire because it’s so exciting and diverse. I’m excited to explore what I’m capable of and expand my artistry.” – Peter Mazurowski
ABOUT | Shania is starting her first season with Charlotte Ballet. Born in Sussex Countey, NJ, she has been dancing since the age of eight. She dances because she loves the challenge it brings forward each day. It is a learning process that has taught her so much about herself and who she is as a person. When she is not dancing, she loves to catch up with friends over coffee.
BALLET FAVORITES | Out of all the roles she has ever danced, she has enjoyed performing the principal girl in Balanchine’s Valse Fantaisie. Her favorite ballet is Serenade by George Balanchine, and her favorite choreographer is Gerald Arpino.
ADVICE FOR ASPIRING DANCERS | “Keep going, even when it gets tough, because everyone is destined for great things.”