Meet the Artists of Allegro Dance Project
2019 Company Dancers
Angelito has danced for Dance Theatre of Tennessee, Lexington Ballet, and Kentucky Ballet Theatre.
He has been featured in leading roles as a guest artist with the Bluegrass Youth Ballet and Gloria Deo School of the Arts. This is his fourth season with the Allegro Dance Project.
EveMarie has danced professionally with Lexington Ballet, Dance Theatre of Tennessee, and Hosanna Sacred Arts, as well as four seasons with Missouri Ballet Theatre as a demi-soloist. She earned her Masters in Arts Administration from the University of Kentucky and a Bachelor of Arts in Dance Pedagogy from Butler University, Summa Cum Laude with Highest Departmental Honors. EveMarie is an instructor in the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Kentucky, and her choreography has been presented at BalletMet Dance Academy, Indy Convergence, and Magnum Opus. This is her second season as a company dancer with Allegro Dance Project and her first season as the Director of Development.
A graduate of Douglas Anderson School of the Arts in Jacksonville, FL, Mr. Littlejohn toured throughout Mexico with Ballet Eddy Toussaint de Montreal. He subsequently joined the Lexington Ballet in Kentucky, dancing leading roles in “Giselle” and “The Nutcracker”. While dancing in Nicaragua’s International Ballet Gala, he also worked extensively with disabled children. In 2015, he joined Ballet Palm Beach, dancing the title role in “Gatsby”. Having been an apprentice to the Ensemble, he now joins Cleo Parker Robinson Dance for his second season as a member of the Ensemble. This is his fourth season with Allegro Dance Project.
Kate is a Junior in the University of Kentucky Honors College, majoring in Agricultural and Medical Biotechnology, minoring in dance. She trained with Bluegrass Youth Ballet for twelve years where she performed roles such as Sugar Plum Fairy and the title roll in both The Little Mermaid and Arabella's Journey. She attended the Kentucky Governor's School of the Arts in 2014 and returned last summer as a Residential Advisor. She received additional training at summer intensives with Cincinnati Ballet and Kentucky Ballet Theatre and continues to expand her training by attending the American College Dance Association Conferences each spring. Kate assists with our weekly Adaptive Dance classes and this is her fifth season with Allegro Dance Project.
Elizabeth (Katie) Durham
Katie is a sophomore at The University of Alabama majoring in Psychology and Dance and minoring in Spanish and Human Development. She has been dancing since the age of two and currently teaches at Nu Revolution Dance Studio. She has trained in various styles including contemporary, jazz, tap, ballet, musical theater, and comes from a competition background. Katie has traveled all over the country to receive training from the best choreographers in the world including: Travis Wall, Stacey Tookey, and tWitch. Katie was an assistant for our weekly Adaptive Dance classes and Healthy Movement Dance classes at the Down Syndrome Association of Central Kentucky for two years and we are delighted to welcome her back for her third season dancing with Allegro Dance Project.
Ainsley Thomas is a Senior at Lafayette High School. She is a contemporary dance major at SCAPA and has been training at Bluegrass Youth Ballet for twelve years. She is a part of Lafayette Theatre and has participated in several shows. Ainsley has been featured as lead roles in Alice in Wonderland, Dia de los Muertos, and The Nutcracker. She is excited for her Third season with Allegro Dance Project.
Rio started taking dance classes when she was five years old at a recreational studio in Lawrenceburg, KY. Since then she has trained in several studios in Louisville, Kentucky, enhancing her ballet, contemporary and modern dance techniques. She performed for two years in the nationally recognized Moscow Ballet’s The Great Russian Nutcracker. Through invitation she attended the Northern Ballet’s summer intensive in Leeds, England in 2017. Rio had a great experience performing with Allegro Dance Project in 2015 and is very excited to be back this year.
Benjamin takes ballet classes with Bluegrass Youth Ballet and is active in the LEXSwing swing dancing community. In addition to dance, Ben also loves traveling and learning about other cultures. He is also a proud partner with the Urban Ninja Project here in Lexington and this is his fourth season with Allegro Dance Project.
Lindsey has been dancing for about eight years and found a home at Bluegrass Youth Ballet where she first discovered ballet, and later, contemporary dance. She attends Lafayette High School as a Junior, where she continues as a pre-engineering student and orchestral viola player. She is excited for her second season with the Allegro Dance Project!
Megan is an upcoming freshman at Lafayette High School where she is on the Dance Team and takes part in the SCAPA program as a contemporary dance major. She has danced with Bluegrass Youth Ballet for the past 11 years, where she just recently danced the lead role in the Sorcerer's Apprentice. This is her second season with Allegro Dance Project.
Marian trained in classical ballet for five years with Bluegrass Youth Ballet. She has since graduated from the University of Kentucky with a bachelor's in Kinesiology with plans to pursue a Doctorate in Physical Therapy, and is currently a personal trainer with Proof Fitness. This is her first season with Allegro Dance Project.
Gwendolyn has danced with Bluegrass Youth Ballet for 12 years. She attends Lafayette High school as both a SCAPA ballet major and as a Pre-Engineering student. She was also the first chair flute in the Lafayette Symphonic band. This is her second season dancing with Allegro Dance Project and her flute debut with the Allegro Dance Project band.
Isabelle has been dancing for thirteen years and has received the majority of her training and support at Bluegrass Youth Ballet. She attends Bluegrass United and will be a Junior in the fall. She has received additional training at Kentucky Ballet Theatre and has attended Summer Intensives with both Louisville Ballet and Cincinnati Ballet. She has performed in the Ballet Under the Stars Pre-show for several years. This is Isabelle’s second season with Allegro Dance Project.
Natalie attends Lafayette High School in the SCAPA Dance Program and the Pre-Engineering Program. She has been dancing with Bluegrass Youth Ballet since the age of three and danced the lead role of Clara in the Nutcracker this past year. This is her first season with Allegro Dance Project.
Quinlan has been dancing at Bluegrass Youth Ballet for six years. She is a student at Lafayette High School and is in the gifted and talented program for visual arts, which is her favorite thing to do other than dance. This is her first season with Allegro Dance Project.
Tessa has been training with Bluegrass Youth Ballet for seven years. She uses one of her elective classes in school to help in the middle school special education room, where she helps the students with their science, accompanies them to speech therapy, and loves to see them every day. She also assists with our weekly Adaptive Dance Classes and this is her first season dancing with Allegro Dance Project.
Reese has been dancing with Bluegrass Youth Ballet for twelve years and danced the lead role of Clara in the Nutcracker this past year. She attends Lafayette High School as a SCAPA Ballet major and as a pre-engineering student. This is her first season with Allegro Dance Project.
Aerial & Circus Artists
Company Dancer & Pole Artist
Amberly is a dancer, aerialist, and choreographer living in Louisville. She attended Purdue University where she earned a minor in Dance, and Bachelors degrees in Psychology and Creative Writing, as well as Bellarmine University where she earned a Master of the Arts in Teaching. She is now the full-time Dance teacher at Noe Middle School and has also presented works with her own company, Ambo Dance Theatre, for venues such as Voices HeaRD, Fund for the Arts Opening Night at Churchill Downs, and the Louisville Dance Series. Additional credits include Blackbird Dance Theatre (2015-2016), the 6th No Borders Project (2018), and Suspend Productions (2016-present). This is her fourth season with Allegro Dance Project.
Aerial Silks & Aerial Ladder Artist Jacey has been training in the aerial arts for ten years and teaching aerial arts to children as young as three years old for seven years. Her speciality is Lyra, but her first apparatus was aerial silks. She is currently a sophomore at Spalding University where she is majoring in Social work. This is her first season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
Spanish Web Artist
Olivia became intrigued by circus arts at the end of her freshman year in high school. She started taking classes at a local circus gym in Louisville and very quickly learned that she had found her passion. Aerial silks and Spanish web are her main specialties, but she has also trained and performed on lyra, aerial sling, trapeze, aerial cube, and aerial sphere. She has performed in many showcases and productions with the Louisville Turners Circus and has her own business, Olivia Aerialist. This is her first season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
Aerial Straps Artist
Elias is a third generation circus performer. Born in Cuba, he began training at the age of five at the National Sport Institution before moving to the United States in 2012. His talents include: acrobatics, aerial straps, Chinese Pole, fire eating and spinning, stilt walking, unicycle, juggling, clowning, rolling globe walking, singing and playing guitar. He is the owner and coach at Cirque Skills Aerial Arts School and this is his first season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
Spinner & Juggler
Aaron started juggling in the summer of 2018 as a way to pass time while his girlfriend was training in aerial arts. He started with balls and quickly found himself moving to clubs and knives. He spent a lot of his youth focusing on music and art, so has always been drawn towards creative outlet, but juggling was never something he thought he would pursue. Aaron has really enjoyed this past year of learning new techniques and making friends from all the amazing people in the community. This is his first season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
Jolene Davis- Violin
Jolene is a violinist, pianist, composer, arranger and studio musician. She has performed at Disney's Top of the World, Sea World, and with headliners like Johnny Mathis, Red Skelton and Liberace. Jolene also directs the Bluegrass Kid's Theatre troupe in Springfield, KY. This is Jolene's fifth season performing and composing with Allegro Dance Project and we are delighted to have her on our Outreach team as an outreach accompanist as well.
Marcus Wilkerson- Percussion & vocals
Marcus is a singer, songwriter, guitarist and percussionist from Louisville, KY. When he's not working on musical projects, he spends the majority of his time making his product Jūn Bug Probiotic Honey Soda which is growing widely popular across the region. Check out the website kentuckyjunbug.com to see what "the buzz" is all about! . Marcus Wilkerson's "rock-n-soul" style is influenced by jazz, world music as well as the seminole folk, gospel and soul songs of his and his parent's generation and even a bit of hip hop. This is Marcus's fifth season with Allegro Dance Project and he also provides music accompaniment for our Inclusive Dance Outreach Program.
Smith Donaldson- Bass
Smith has been laying down bass lines for over 20 years. He has played most of the major cities west of the Mississippi River with a number of different bands. He currently plays regionally with the Tallboys of Kentucky, Coralee and the Townies, the Northside Sheiks and in the DeBraun Thomas trio. This is Smith's fourth season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
DeBraun Thomas- Guitar & Vocals
DeBraun grew up surrounded by many different musicians in the San Francisco Bay Area and began playing in music clubs with father's bands at the age of 15. In 2009 he moved to Lexington,KY to attend the University of Kentucky. After graduating in 2012 he has been focusing on music in addition to working at the local NPR affiliate WUKY. Since 2013, DeBraun has been performing his original music as the DeBraun Thomas Trio. His influences range from artists like Jimi Hendrix to Otis Redding and he describes his music as Rock N Soul. He released his first solo album, All My Colors are Blind, in 2015 recorded at Shagri-La Productions by Duane Lundy. DeBraun is an accompanist for our Inclusive Dance Outreach program & Adaptive Dance classes and this is his fifth season performing and composing with Allegro Dance Project.
Thomas Usher- Music Director, Percussion & vocals
Thomas is a musician from Hoover, Alabama. He graduated from Berea College where he studied percussion with Tripp Britton. Thomas has performed with The Studio Players and in Kentucky Conservatory Theatre's Winterfest and Summerfest, with numerous bands and provides live music accompaniment for Allegro Dance Project's Inclusive Dance Outreach program. This is his third season performing with Allegro Dance Project.
Christian Hayden - Saxophone & Keyboard
Christian has been playing the Saxophone for four years and the piano for seven years. He is a piano major and band minor at SCAPA where he will be a Eighth grader in the fall. He plays saxophone for The Groove Merchants Jazz Band, and he played in the Tri-State Gold Honor Band this year. He loves Jazz music and in addition to Piano and Saxophone he also enjoys playing the drums in his church worship band. When he isn’t playing music he can be found on the pitching mound enjoying his other love, baseball. He was chosen as a member of the 13u Western Little League All-Start District Team This is his second season performing with Allegro Dance Project.