Luminario is a contemporary ballet company also presenting classic modern dance repertory and aerial dance. Our dancers live in LA, but come from everywhere, representing the region's diversity and excitement.
Our choreographers range from classically inspired such as San Francisco Ballet's Michael Smuin and Polish ballet Maestro Stefan Wenta, to edgy contemporary choreographers such as Josie Walsh and Jamal Story. 2013 guest choreographer was Debra Lynn Brown.
Debra Lynn Brown's piece, "Brace...Yourself" was seen in our Season 4 Rep Shows at the El Portal. at the Ford Amphitheatre, at the LA/SoCal Dance Invitational, and at the World Dance Awards, October 13, 2013.
Luminario Ballet is honored to have performed two Bella Lewitzky modern dance pieces. "Recuerdo" in 2009 and "Turf" in 2010 set by Lewitzky Dance members, John Pennington and Diana MacNeil. (see right)
Luminario Ballet is also at the forefront of the synergy happening between aerial and dance with Judith FLEX Helle's "Lift Ticket" (below left), and Alexandre Magno's "Cheers darling" ("So You Think You Can Dance", Madonna) his first combined aerial/ballet piece in 2010.
From 2013-2018, Luminario Ballet artistic director Judith FLEX Helle has been a judge at the World Choreography Awards, and in 2017 and 2018, a judge, lecturer and workshop instructor at the Reno Aerial Dance Fest (RADFest)
Dance Magazine's Wendy Perron names Luminario Ballet director Judith FLEX Helle to her Top 5 List of Women in Dance Leadership in Southern California*, in 2014.
World Dance Award nominates Luminario Ballet artistic director and choreographer, Judith FLEX Helle for Outstanding Choreographer Concert/Live Performance in 2011
Judith grew up in Boston, MA and studied dance at the Walnut Hill School, Boston Center for the Arts, and the Alvin Ailey School of American Dance NYC. She has a BFA in Film from the San Francisco Art Institute, where she made dance films of the experimental modern punk dance company, the Oblong Rondas. In 1981, she left the US to dance in Berlin, Germany at the Deutsche Opera Berlin, where she formed her first dance company, "FLEX", with dancers from the Deutsche Opera and other fine US and European ballet/modern companies.
Alongside her dance and choreography career, Judith became well known for her daring, exciting, tempermental, and emotional performances on the trapeze, allowing her to have a dual career as a dancer and a trapeze artist, prior to Cirque du Soliel's conquering the world. While in Berlin, she also appeared in movies, TV shows, theatricals of all kinds, cabaret, industrials, and experimental theater.
She moved to LA in 1988, where she taught dance at Idyllwild School of the Arts, performed in Los Angeles with various companies, and signed with dance agent Julie McDonald. After retiring from dance in 1996, she continued to have a very successful career in performing as a single trapeze artist, surfing the wave of popularity via Cirque du Soleil. At this time she also became highly sought after as a private aerial dance coach, and her students are now stars of the international cirque world. She has unlocked the key to integrating aerial dance into terra dance, and the dancers in Luminario Ballet truly are venturing into new uncharted territories in the air. Her choreography career took off with the founding of Luminario Ballet, and Judith has choreographed many ballet and aerial dance works for the company, as well as commissiones ballets and aerial dances for 5 symphony orchestras, including the LA Philharmonic. Judith is a representative of the global conversation about dance here in LA, and holds up her end with Luminario Ballet!!
Daukayev received his professional training at the Vaganova and Perm Ballet Schools. In 1972, he won the Bronze Medal at the Varna International Ballet Competition. He was subsequently invited to join the Kirov as a soloist where he was quickly promoted to principal dancer. During his 20 year career he danced the leading male roles in the complete repertoire of classical ballets with numerous international ballet tours. He has also performed in both film and television. St. Petersburg audiences loved him for the brilliant technique and exceptional dramatic ability that he brought to his roles. Nowadays he leads the Youth America Grand Prix students at Marat Daukayev School of Ballet to success, and contributes to TV shows such as "BunHeads", "So You Think You Can Dance", and Dancing With the Stars".
Borda is the president and CEO of the New York Philharmonic. Previously with the New York Philharmonic for eight seasons as its executive director, Borda spent 17 years as the president and CEO of the Los Angeles Philharmonic prior to returning to the New York Philharmonic in 2017.
Jann Berman, owner of PRBUZZ and Berman Singer PR is one of LA's most creative and thrilling PR firms.
Dr. A. Phoenix Delgado is the assistant dean for advancement at the USC Thornton School of Music. He received his Bachelor of Music and Master of Music degrees from the USC Thornton School of Music in flute/vocal performance and orchestral conducting, respectively. Most recently, he completed his Doctor of Musical Arts degree at USC Thornton in flute performance, with elective fields in conducting, theory & analysis, and transformative executive leadership.
Joel A Feingold is a 25 year industry veteran. During his 10 years as an agent he represented several well known bands and artists including Diana Krall and The James Montgomery Band.
Charles Evans Jr. is a film producer at his company, Acapella Films. (The Aviator)
Mr. Evans generously founded Luminario Ballet in 2008 with funds from the Charles Evans Foundation, NY
Managing and Artistic Director of Luminario Ballet
Pamela Sapetto has been a leader in government and community relations in California for nearly 30 years and founded Sapetto Group, Inc. in 1990 to assist the real estate industry with their entitlement needs. Ms. Sapetto has been responsible for the approval of approximately 70 million square feet of commercial, industrial and retail development and approximately 55,000 residential units throughout Southern California.
Martin Sapetto, architect's practice is located in Orange, California and encompasses a variety of projects currently focusing on different forms of residential and commercial work.The foundation for his work is rooted in California, but has also has been greatly influenced by his exposure to Europe. Pamela and Martin were board members of Ballet Pacifica prior to becoming board members of Luminario Ballet.
Owner of Luminario Ballet's rehearsal and performance space, Fais Do-Do in the West Adams District.
Special thanks to Yablok for hosting Luminario Ballet at FaisDoDo as the resident ballet company!