Summer Master Class Series

Summer Semester Programs          Master Class Series       


MASTER CLASS SERIES – $100 per Series

You are invited to take Master classes with Louisville Ballet Artistic staff and professional company dancers! These classes are open to all pre-professional minded ballet students throughout the Louisville community and surrounding areas!

Each weekly Master Class Series consists of a daily class Monday – Thursday, 6:00 – 7:30 pm, at Louisville Ballet Studios located at 315 East Main Street.

Receive a 20% discount for enrolling in 4 Master Class Series.
Receive a 25% discount for enrolling in all 5 Master Class Series.

(Min age of 13, with at least 1 year of pointe).

Each Master Class Series is limited to 25 students.

Click here to download a paper registration form.
Click the blue registration button above to begin online registration!


Series 1
June 3 – 6
Natalia Ashikhmina
Louisville Ballet 
Company Dancer

Born in Bratsk, Russia, Natalia graduated from the world-renowned Novosibirsk Ballet Academy studying under Tatiana Sulimova and Tatiana Kapustina. She accepted Vyacheslav Gordeyev’s invitation and became the youngest prima ballerina of the Russian National Ballet in Moscow where she worked with Andrey Kudeline and partnered with Yuri Burlaka. Five years later, Eldar Aliev offered Natalia a principal position with Ballet Internationale in Indianapolis where she worked with legends Irina Kolpakova and Vladilen Simeonov. Natalia joined the Louisville Ballet as a principal dancer in 2006. Here, she had the privilege of working with Bruce Simpson, Helen Starr, Alun Jones, Harald Uwe Kern and a multitude of wonderful choreographers and stagers. Her repertoire includes Princess Aurora in (The Sleeping Beauty), Giselle (Giselle), Nikiya (La Bayadere), Belle (Beauty and the Beast), Zabeida (Scheherazade), The Sylph (La Sylphide), Kitri (Don Quixote), Daisy (Andre Prokovsky’s The Great Gatsby), The Dying Swan, Helen Picket’s Etisian, Val Caniparoli’s Vivacé and over 100 performances as Odette/Odile (Swan Lake). Natalia won the Audience Award at the 1998 International Ballet Competition Arabesque, a gold medal at the 1999 Competition of Professional Ballet Academies in Russia, performed at the 2004 Gala des Etoiles in Montreal and holds a Master of Fine Arts Degree from the Novosibirsk Choreographic College. She and her family now call Louisville home.
Series 2
June 11 – 14
Tuesday – Friday
Brandon Ragland
Louisville Ballet 
Company Dancer

Born and raise in Birmingham, Alabama, Brandon received his early training from Jacqueline Crenshaw Lockhart and continued his dance training at the Alabama School of Fine Arts. In 2007, he graduated from Butler University with a B.S. in Dance-Arts Administration. Since joining the Louisville Ballet in 2010, he has had the opportunity to perform leading roles in classical and neoclassical works such as, Andre Prokovsky’s The Three Musketeers; Val Caniparoli’s The Brown-Forman Nutcracker, Lamberena, Lady of the Camellias, and Spaghetti Western, Robert Curran’s Coppelia, Serge Lifar’sSuite en Blanc, George Balanchine’s Square Dance, Kammermusik #2, and Western Symphony. Other works include Bruce Simpson’s Swan Lake, La Slyphide, Ma Cong’s Tethered Pulse, and works by Adam Hougland, Lucas Jervies, and Alun Jones.  Before joining Louisville Ballet, Brandon spent 3 seasons with the Alabama Ballet, where he performed works by George Balanchine, Roger Van Fleteren, Christopher Bruce, and Twyla Tharp. As an aspiring choreographer, he has created works for Louisville Ballet, Louisville Ballet Youth Ensemble, Alabama Ballet, Alabama Ballet School, AROVA Contemporary Ballet, Ballet Arkansas, Next Generation Ballet, J. Lockhart Performing Arts Institute, and Sedona Chamber Ballet.
Series 3
June 17 – 20
Helen Starr
Former Louisville Ballet  Associate Artistic Director
Helen Starr was born in England and trained at the Royal Academy of Dance and the Royal Ballet School. She spent 7 years with the Royal Ballet as Soloist and Assistant Ballet Mistress. She then joined London Festival Ballet as a Principal Dancer and danced leading roles in all the classics and contemporary repertoire. Her partners have included John Gilpin, André Prokovsky, Peter Schaufuss, Peter Martins, Frank Augustyn and Mikhail Baryshnikov with whom she danced La Sonnambula, Petrouchka and the pas de deux from Le Corsaire, right here in Louisville. During her 38 years with Louisville Ballet, Miss Starr staged Swan Lake, The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, Coppelia, Les Sylphides, La Fete Etrange, Paquita & Sir Frederick Ashton’s Les Patineurs. Recognized nationwide as a fine ballet teacher and coach, she continues to stage ballets and give Master classes.
Series 4
July 15 – 18
Mark Krieger
Louisville Ballet 
Company Dancer

Mark, a Virginia native, studied dance under Jefferson Baum at Grand Valley State University in Michigan. In 2004, Mark joined Ballet Tucson where he danced for two seasons before joining Columbia City Ballet. He spent the last five years with the Columbia City Ballet as a Principal Dancer. Mark has been a member of Louisville Ballet since 2012.
Series 5
July 22 – 25
Robert Curran,
Louisville Ballet Artistic & Executive Director
Trained at The Australian Ballet School and having enjoyed a thrilling and fulfilling career with The Australian Ballet as a Principal Artist, Robert Curran took the passion and discipline he developed as a dancer and set his sights on diversifying his knowledge, skills and abilities. Education and experience continually expanded his ability to move his own body on stage and through this, move an audience through a wide range of emotions. Beyond his dancing career he strives to continue to move people towards a satisfying encounter with dance. Robert is motivated by the form that a dancer gains from training in the traditions of classical ballet, where respect and discipline can facilitate breathtaking strength and freedom. He is also inspired by the innovation that forms the function of any artist, that being to bravely and boldly express oneself through art for the greater good of a community. As Artistic Director of Louisville Ballet, Robert continues to contribute to the global arts community, enriching his knowledge of the art form to which he has devoted his life. He is excited by, and committed to, the Louisville community with its abundant respect for the arts and its exciting perspective on the future.