Paiter van Yperen
In 2007, Paiter started dancing at the age of 12. Under the direction of Elisa Schroth, he trained in both classical ballet and modern dance at the Christian Academy of Dance. He has had the privilege of performing many lead roles there and became an apprentice with Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet in 2013 while still a student in the school. In 2014, he was promoted to Company Artist and has performed at Project Dance New York and all throughout Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York, New Hampshire, Michigan, and Alabama. He continues to pursue excellence by regularly attending intensives at the Martha Graham School in NYC and Ad Deum in Texas. He has participated in master classes with dance professionals all over the country including Steve Rooks (former Principal Dancer with the Martha Graham Dance Company), Randall Flinn (Artistic Director of Ad Deum Dance Company), Freddy Moore (Alvin Ailey and Footprints Dance Company), and Durrell Comedy (Jose Limon Dance Company and Mark Morris Dance Group). Paiter has appeared as a guest artist with the Danbury Music Center as the Nutcracker Prince. He is currently on faculty with the Christian Academy of Dance and Jazz-N-Motion, both of which he has choreographed original works for.
Sydney Stouffer began her early to intermediate training in Grand Rapids, Michigan under the direction of James and Lucia Martin and Akop and Giane Akopian. When she was fifteen she was invited to join Turning Pointe School of Dance’s Senior Ensemble under Debra Burr and Tess Sinke. Just one year later she joined Michigan's first faith based professional ballet company, Soli Deo Gloria Contemporary Ballet. She was a Company Apprentice for two years and even had the opportunity to choreograph for their 2015-2016 season. In 2011, Sydney had the privilege of studying at ABT’s summer program in Detroit. In 2014, Ms. Stouffer was awarded a full scholarship to Ballet Magnificat’s summer intensive where she was placed in the pre-professional level. Ms. Stouffer has traveled all over the state of Michigan and in Chicago performing both classical and original works. Not only has she been a part of large-scale productions, but has ministered through outreach events and workshops for under-served communities. Ms. Stouffer has seven years experience in choreographing works for churches, nursing homes, hospitals, and fundraising events. Sydney is very thankful to be a part of Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet’s coming season and is very excited to see what God is going to do!
Richelle Trebilcock began dancing classical ballet at the age of five, studying Vaganova technique primarily at the Arizona School of Classical Ballet through the age of 18. Throughout her training, she attended several ballet intensives across the nation including Ballet Magnificat, Milwaukee Ballet Company, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, The Rock and Paradosi.
In 2015, she graduated summa cum laude from Grand Canyon University (GCU) with a B.S. in athletic training and a minor in dance education. While in college, Ricki had the opportunity to perform with the GCU dance team for three years and compete nationally. She additionally participated in dance education courses, earning graduation with honors through the National Honors Society of Dance Arts (NHSDA). She currently holds a license in athletic training and a certification in Pilates mat instruction.
Ricki spent the 2014/2015 season as a company artist of Terpsicore Dance Company in Phoenix, Arizona. She then moved to Tacoma, Washington to join Paradosi Ballet Company as an Apprentice and had the opportunity to minister all along the west coast. This year Ricki is excited and grateful to become a part of Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet and to see how the Lord works in this upcoming season.
Elijah Ryan began dancing in the 7th grade doing hip hop once a week at a local dance studio in Bellingham, Washington. By Ninth grade his curiosity of other movement genres expanded and he began taking Jazz, Contemporary, Modern, and Ballet. He received training from Ben Griffiths, Sarah Anne Lewis, Maluhia VanderGriend and Amanda Shroer. During his second year of Ballet training he decided to venture out and attended Summer Dance Lab for 5 weeks and got his first taste of professional dancing. For the past two years Elijah has been accepted into the Ballet Austin Summer Intensive with full scholarship. This year he got accepted to train with the academy at Ballet Austin, as well as dance with their “Butler Fellows.” He heard of a Christian Contemporary Ballet company in Connecticut and was very interested. After looking at his options he felt determined and led to work with Ekklesia and he cannot wait to see how much he grows in all ways this year.
Emilee Alexander began her dance training when she was 4 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. She has trained under many different teachers including Akop & Gaiane Akopian, Nikoloz Makhateli, Amy Wilson and David Wilcox. At the age of 9 she was selected to be a part of Grand Rapids Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker and again when she was 11. She has also participated in other productions with Michigan Ballet Academy and Long Beach Ballet, where she was able to train for a semester. To further her dance training she attended dance intensives with Ballet Magnificat, Long Beach Ballet, Ad Deum and most recently Joffrey Ballet School’s summer intensive on scholarship. In the summer of 2016 Emilee was selected by David Wilcox to become a member of the Ballet Ambassadors to China program, performing on stages across China. She was also blessed to be a part of His Dance Ministry under the leadership of Shani Englert during the semester she spent training out in California with Long Beach Ballet. All through her dance training Emilee has performed in many community events and outreaches throughout West Michigan, dancing both classical and contemporary works.
Alexis Nale, a native of Latrobe, Pennsylvania, began her training at Laurel Youth Ballet Theatre in Greensburg, Pennsylvania at the age of 10, where she studied under the direction of Eleanor Tornblom and Judy Rae Tubbs. During her time there she performed in numerous full-length ballets including Swan Lake, Coppalia, Sleeping Beauty, and Cinderella as well as their annual production of The Nutcracker accompanied by the Westmoreland Symphony Orchestra. She continued her training at several summer intensives including Bodiography Contemporary Ballet, Next Generation Ballet, and Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet. After enjoying the conditioning classes at Bodiography, Alexis returned to become a certified instructor of the Bodiography Fitness and Strength Training program.Â Upon graduating from Greater Latrobe Senior High School and Laurel Youth Ballet Theater, Alexis continued her dance education at Mercyhurst University. During her time there she performed with The Mercyhurst Dancers under the direction of Tauna Hunter and SoMar Dance Works directed by Mark and Solveig Santillano. She was also a member of the Dance Club, National Honors Society for Dance Arts, and was a founding member of the Mercyhurst University Marching Band. Alexis is an Orthodox Christian and very much values her faith. While at Mercyhurst, Alexis greatly enjoyed performing with the Liturgical Dance Ensemble under the direction of C. Noelle Partusch and travelled to Project Dance in New York City to perform in their open-air concert in Times Square. She also traveled with the ensemble to London, England to perform a concert as part of the Sacred Dance Guild. Alexis has recently graduated from Mercyhurst University in May 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts in dance, and is very excited to be a part of Ekklesia Contemporary Ballet.