Teaching Faculty

Jasmina Stefkovski

Principal 

Jasmina has been a part of the dance industry for over 29 years,  she commenced her training as a student at the National Theatre Ballet School and the Australian Ballet School.  Jasmina been trained in many dance styles with specialist teachers, choreographers and industry professionals from some of the world’s top dance companies, including The Australian Ballet, Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, Nederlands Dance Theatre and many more.

Her classical ballet training in the Vaganova, RAD and Borovansky methods were mentored by some of the best teachers in the world including;

  • Marilyn Jones OBE, Australian Prima Ballerina
  • Leigh Rowles, Australian Ballet School’s head of student training, Australian Ballet
  • Eileen Tasker ARAD, OAM, Borovansky Ballet (Now known as the Australian Ballet)
  • Gailene Stock, Royal Ballet School Director (1999-2013), Australian Ballet School Director (1990-1998), Australian Ballet
  • Ann Jenner, Principal Dancer of the Royal Ballet
  • Mark Annear,  Audition Director and Head of Teacher training at the Royal Ballet School, Previous Australian Ballet School Faculty, Australian Ballet
  • Michaela Kirkaldie, Pedagogic Instructor & Specialist Ballet Coach at the Australian Ballet School, Australian Ballet Dancer
  • Mark Brinkley OAM, Australian Ballet
  • Margaret Wilson, Nederlands Dance Theatre
  • Christine Howard, Character Teacher at the Australian Ballet School, Kolobok Company
  • Mary Renouf, Australian Ballet
  • Adrian Fryer, Australian Ballet
  • Rosemarie Starke, Berlin Ballet
  • Joanne Adderely, State Opera Company
  • Beverley Jane Fry, English National Ballet
  • Spencer Parker,English National Ballet
  • Joanne Canning, Australian Ballet
  • Slava Zolminksi, Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet Russia, State Theatre of Gera Germany
  • Xiuyung Tang, National Ballet of China
  • Mary Li, English National Ballet, Houston Ballet

Qualifications, Committees & Panels

QUALIFICATIONS: 

Teaching: 

  • Registered Teacher;  Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) Certificate of Classical Ballet Teaching Studies (Diploma)
  • Registered Teacher (Associate Status)- Australian Institute of Classical Dance (Borovansky Method)
  • Register & Completed Australian Conservatoire of Ballet (ACB) Teacher Training & Assessment Program  (Pre-primary- Level 4)
  • Affiliate Teacher Status-  Australian Teacher’s Of Dance (A.T.O.D. Ltd.)
  • Registered Teacher – British Ballet Organisation (BBO)
  • Registered Teacher International Character Dance Syllabus
  • Currently studying Bachelor of Arts- Performance Studies

Committees & Panels: 

  • Royal Academy of Dance Vic/Tas Panel representative (4 years) & friend of the panel (2 years)
  • Australian Institute of Classical Dance Committee Member (2015 – present)
  • Ballet Teacher’s Workshop (BTW) Committee member (2012- present)
  • Ballet Teachers’ Workshop- Audition Class Teacher (2012- present)
  • International Association of Dance Medicine & Science Member (2012- present)

Former & Current Student Success & Accolades

Jasmina has an artistic eye and an innovative outlook on performance and choreography, with over 10 years of teaching experience, alongside producing over 11 full scale productions and ballets, she devotes her time to technique, style, musicality & artistry and strives to bring out the best in her students. Her strengths are Classical Ballet, Contemporary, Variations, Repetoire, Pointe Work, Limber & Conditioning, Private Coaching, Audition Preparation, Musical & Historical Theory of Dance and Choreography.

Former & current students trained by Jasmina have achieved accolades and success world wide, and have been accepted, invited to participate, or placed in prestigious events, schools, company performances and national/international competitions noted below;

  • Paris Opera Ballet School
  • Vaganova Academy, St Petersburg
  • Bolshoi Ballet Academy
  • Brussels International Ballet School
  • Royal Ballet School
  • English National Ballet School
  • Academie de Danse Classique Princesse Grace
  • Ecole Superior de Danse Cannes Rosella Hightower
  • The Australian Ballet School
  • Queensland Ballet Academy (School of the Queensland Ballet)
  • Victorian College of the Arts (VCASS)
  • Petipa International Ballet Competition
  • Joffrey Ballet School, NY
  • Singapore Ballet Academy 
  • Australian Conservatoire of Ballet
  • Ballet Theatre Australia
  • Indiana Ballet Conservatory (IBC) 

Jasmina has coached repetoire and variations & choreographed solos for students who have been acknowledged and awarded a place in;

  • Asian Grand Prix
  • Ballet Teachers’ Workshop Vic Inc.
  • Australasian Ballet Challenge 
  • RAD Audrey Nicholls Graded Awards
  • RAD Kathleen Gorham Awards
  • McDonald Sydney Eisteddfod
  • RAD Autumn, Winter, Spring Schools
  • AICD Ballet Awards 
  • Local Eisteddfod & Competitions

Former students have been guest performers in;

  • Graham Murphy’s ‘Nutcracker, the story of Clara’ with the Australian Ballet 
  • Stanton Welch’s ‘Romeo & Juliet’, with the Houston Ballet
  • Ken Ludden’s Ne Roi” Ballet premiere
  • Australian Ballet’s ‘Coppelia’

To view Miss Jasmina’s Acknowledgement on The Australian Ballet School’s Teacher Recognition Page, please click on the link below.

http://www.australianballetschool.com.au/content/supportus/teacherRecognition.html

Alida Segal

Character Lecturer

Alida Segal is regarded as Australia’s most respected dance lecturers and choreographers specialising in National and Character Dance. Graduating from the Moiseyev School of National and Character dance in Moscow, USSR, she has worked with professional companies and leading training institutions as an advisor, teacher and choreographer for more than 30 years.

Her early dance training in Melbourne includes studying classical ballet under Kathleen Gorham, Eileen Tasker, Madame J. Ciunovas and Laurel Marten OBE and Character dance under Madame Marina Berezowsky AM.

Being offered a place at the Victorian College of The Arts, she decided to further her dance training overseas and travelled to Moscow where at the age of 17, Alida graduated with honours from the Moiseyev School of National and Character Dance. She went on to study Teaching Methodology and Choreography and was awarded a Diploma in National and Character Stage Dance from the USSR’s Ministry of Culture. She was later offered a position in Doctorate studies in Choreography at Moscow’s State institute for Performing Arts and was the sole Australian delegate at UNESCO Symposium “Preservation and Development of Folk Dance” held in the USSR.

She has performed across Australia with Kolobok Dance Company and at the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, Moscow, with the Moiseyev School. Her many teaching and choreographic engagements include The Australian Ballet school (lecturer and member of assessment panel), The Australian Conservatoire of Ballet, Shalom Australia Dance Company, the Queensland University of Technology (Dance Department), The Victorian College of the Arts and The National Theatre Ballet School. Also being fluent in both English and Russian she is often called upon to translate and assist visiting Russian teachers and choreographers working in companies and elite training institutions. While Head of Character Dance studies at the VCA & VCASS, her choreography was performed for HRH Queen Elizabeth II and on the schools international tours to Scotland, Hong Kong & Singapore. Other engagements include directing, producing and presenting “From Folk Dance to Footlights” for Multicultural Arts Victoria; Assistant Ballet Mistress for VIC Arts Dance Company; Dance Consultant for Monash University (Drama) & VCA (Drama); and her expertise in dance training was sought by Olympic Gold Medal winning skaters Christopher Dean & Jane Torvill.

Currently, as well as teaching & choreographing across Australia, Alida is writing her syllabus and mentoring ballet teachers in the training methods she has developed over the past 35 years.

Alida is the Academies specialist character dance teacher in 2016.

Emma Lippa

Ballet Accompaniment, Solo Pianist & Honoured Artists of Russia

Born in Moscow, Russia, Emma Lippa studied at the Gnesin Institute under the famous artist and teacher Alexander Jocheles. On graduation she began what was to become her renowned career with the Bolshoi Theatre where she was employed as a ballet accompanist playing for classes and rehearsals of the complete repetoire.

In her 28 years with the Bolshoi ballet she worked with many luminaries of the dance world, became chief ballet accompanist and ballet master and performed in many gala concerts throughout Russia and over seas. During this time period Emma toured extensively overseas with the Bolshoi ballet including visits to Australis in 1970 and 1976. She took part in 11 international ballet competitions, 8 of which she was named the best pianist.

Emma joined the Australian Ballet in 1993, after she migrated to Australia under the category of distinguished talent. During her 20 years with the Australian Ballet, Emma played for classes, rehearsals and took part in all repetoire.

Emma;s career includes work with  numerous famous personalities of our time, including Russian composers Khachaturyan, Vlasov, Gavrillin, Shedrin, as well as choreographers Geoffrey (USA), Roland Petit (France), Dame Margaret Scott & David McCallister (Australia).

She was fortunate to accopmany dancing of such outstanding ballet performers as Maya Plisetskaya, Maris Liepa, Vladimir Vasiliev Ekaterina Maksimova, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Mao’s Last Dancer Li Cunxin.

Claire Campbell (Mahon)

Classical Lecturer

As a young girl, Claire trained at Utassy Ballet School under the Direction of Sue and Kevin Hayes and other wonderful teachers such as Laurel Martyn (OBE), one of Australia’s first Principal Ballerinas. A love for performance was fostered, which was further developed when she became a member of the Young Dancers’ Theatre from the age of 11-14.

At the age of 15, Claire began her training at the Australian Ballet School under the Direction Dame Margaret Scott (AC, DBE) and studied under the guidance of highly respected teachers like Aigul Gaisina, Timothy Gordon, Robert Ray, Kelvin Coe, Gayrie MacSween, Christine Howard and Barbara Nimmo. She was also a member of the graduate touring company under the direction of Marilyn Rowe (AM, OBE) and Gailene Stock (AM). And in her final year, she performed the role of Sugarplum in Robert Ray’s ‘Nutcracker’.

Upon graduation Claire was offered a contract with Scottish Ballet, where she performed many roles in traditional full-length ballets, triple bills and modern works for over ten years. Roles such as Princess Florine, White Cat, Fairy of Beauty (Sleeping Beauty), Fairy Doll (Kirov repertoire), Tinkerbell (Peter Pan), Nutcracker (Sugarplum) Divertissement, Walspurgisnacht Divertissement, White Swan Pas Deux as a Divertissement, Pas de Quatre (Giselle), Pas de Six (Tales of Hoffman, Peter Darrell), Monotones First Movement (Ashton), Cupid variation in Laurencia, Pas de Trois (Swan Lake), Swanhilda role in a restaged version of Coppelia, Principal female in Vespri, Waltz Girl in Les Sylphides, Diversions (Kenneth MacMillan) Exotic Birds in Cinderella (Peter Darrell) and Leading Lady in Lila York’s ‘Rapture’. She also performed in Galas, with the highly praised ‘Belong Pas de Deux’ (from ‘Till the Mesiah Comes’ – Norbert Vesak),

In this time Claire was extremely fortunate to be coached and influenced by many inspirational artists, in particular Galina Samsova, Lyn Seymour, Kenneth MacMillan, Sorella Englund and Lila York. And she has been equally fortunate to perform for, and meet, the Queen and Prince Phillip, and Princesses Margaret and Anne.

Since retirement, Claire has worked as a freelance classical ballet teacher, choreographer, examiner and adjudicator for various institutions and Dance societies in both Scotland and Australia such as Scottish Ballet for over 17 years.

Former students have been accepted into the Royal Ballet School, the Australian Ballet School, Dutch National Academy, English National Ballet School, Mannheim Academy of Dance Germany, New Zealand School of Dance, QLD Pre-professional Course and the Dance Academy. And past students have gone on to perform with companies like the Australian Ballet, Queensland Ballet, Western Australian Ballet, Manila Ballet, Badishces Staats Theatre Germany and Northern Ballet (UK).

Past students coached and choreographed for have been placed in the following competitions of note: Alana Haines NZ, Sydney Eisteddfod Elizabeth Albert Scholarship, Sydney Scholarships Awards, AICD International Scholarships, Ballet Teachers’ Workshop Finals and the Asian Grand Prix. And Claire has also choreographed for, coached and filmed students who have been successfully selected for the Prix de Lausanne 2016, 2017 and 2018, the Paris Opera Ballet School Summer Intensive and the Royal Ballet School (Upper) final round audition.

Claire also has a BA Degree in Economics and Human Resources Management and she has a Registered Teacher certificate (Australian Conservatoire of Ballet).

Sophie Briggs

Classical, Jazz & Contemporary Lecturer

Sophie began dancing at the age of 3 at the National Theatre Ballet School under the direction of Marilyn Jones O.B.E and Beverly Jane Fry. She went on to dance full time at Dance Factory, training in classical ballet, jazz, contemporary, tap, hip hop and musical theatre.

Sophie is also a qualified Pilates instructor & personal trainer with a lifetime of experience performing and training in dance, Pilates, aerial skills, gymnastics and fitness. With over ten years dance teaching experience, Sophie has Certificate IV & Diploma in Pilates (Mat, Studio and Rehab), Certificates III & IV in Fitness and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment. Sophie is an assistant teacher for Pilates teacher training courses with Positive Action Pilates and is co-founder and presenter of the Cueing the Dancer Franklin Method Workshops for dance educators. She has certifications in Progressing Ballet Technique, barre fitness, classical and fitness Pilates, and pre & post natal Pilates.

Performing professionally since the age of 7, career highlights include four years as a dancer, diver and aerialist at Tokyo Disney Resort, demonstrating for Positive Action Pilates at IDEA World Fitness Convention in Los Angeles and In-Trinity & Matrix Fitness at the Australian Fitness Expo, modelling for Pilates and fitness videos and teaching manuals, as well as countless appearances at public, corporate and commercial events as a dancer and children’s entertainer, both on stage and film. In 2017, Sophie was invited by the Ballet Teachers’ Workshop Vic competition to be their guest audition teacher for the 6 -7 yo category.

She was one of the first certified In-Trinity instructors in Australia and has completed Lisa Howell’s Level 1 Dance Teacher & Therapist Training. She is a member of the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science and continues to collaborate and work with noted choreographers and performers in the commercial dance industry. She was mentored by choreographer Dana Jolly and continues to both learn from and work alongside Dana to stay up to date with the latest trends in the commercial dance and musical theatre industries.

Sophie is passionate about sharing the benefits of Pilates with young dancers and using her knowledge of both dance and fitness industries to teach dancers efficient movement and sound dance technique.

Gaia Iasi

Classical Lecturer 


Originating from São Paulo in Brazil, Gaia started dancing when she was 3 years old at Ballet Paula Castro, where she attended classical ballet classes for ten years, tap dance classes for four years and professional theatre classes for four years. She then auditioned for ‘Escola do Teatro Bolshoi no Brasil” (Bolshoi Theatre Ballet Brazil). The school adopts the same principles as the Bolshoi Theatre of Russia, created in Moscow in 1773

After being one among a small group of people who were accepted, she obtained a professional graduation degree in Classical Ballet under the artistic direction of Wladimir Wassiliev and ballet mistresses Nina Speranskaia, Galina Kravchenko, Irina Ranchiskaya, Ludmila Sinelnikova, Elena Serebrova, Nadezhda, Larissa de Araújo, Fabiana Faraco and Jane Dickie. She continued her studies through the course in Character Dance with Galina Kravchenko and Ludmila Sinelnikova. Contemporary Dance with Philippe Trehet and Amarildo Cassiano. Historical Dance with  Irina Pyattkina, Fabiana Faraco and Larissa de Araújo. Drama with Sabrina Lermen, Fabiana Faraco and José Sizenando de Moraes Neto.Tap Dance with  Débora Hauer. Classical Pas de deux under Dmitri Lvovich Afanasiev, Ilia Osinovsky and Denys Nevidomyy. Respiratory Gymnastic with Daisy Carvalho e Flávio Sampaio. Musical Literature with Márcia Consentino. Piano with Pavel Kazarian and Medely Meinster Dib. Repertoire Classical Ballet with  Galina Kravchenko and rehearsals of major repertoire ballet pieces with ballet mistresses Ekaterina Maximova and Jô Braska Negrão, and masters Wladimir Wassiliev, Jair Moraes and Emílio Martins.

Gaia then performed as a ballet dancer in domestic and international festivals and presentations in Brazil and Italy and after graduating in 2007, she went back to São Paulo to continue her studies. In 2008, she started a part-time Education course at Pontifícia Universidade Católica  with the objective of teaching Classical Ballet and acquiring the necessary knowledge about the development of children and adolescents. She graduated in 2011, with the intent of preparing ballet classes focused not only on meeting students’ expectations, but also on developing their psychomotor learning and corporal awareness, she conceived and presented the course final paper entitled “Dance and Psychomotor Learning.”

While studying for her Education diploma, in 2008 she joined the Company Ballet Center school as a Classical Ballet teacher and also as a guest soloist dancer, studying with ballet mistresses Ady Addor and Toshi Kobayashi. In 2009, she attended the Pre-Primary and Primary Dance Course of Royal Academy of Dance in São Paulo and improved her English knowledge by studying in Boston-Massachusetts, USA.

In 2010, she participated in the 28eme Rencontre Internationale des Éducateurs Freinet (28th International Meeting of Freinet Educators) in (Nantes, France), attending “Mind and Body in Education” course, among others. In 2011, she attended the Vaganova Methodology Specialization Course, given by Denny Nevidomyy in São Paulo, Brazil. In the same year, she worked as a commentator for the Pathé Live (www.mobz.com.br) broadcastings in Brazil of “Ballet at the Cinema”.

Also in 2011, she completed a 4 year Drama Course at Teatro-Escola Macunaíma, which adopts Constantin Stanislavsky’s concepts. She took part in six plays representing characters by several authors including: Joseph Kesselring, Woody Allen, Garcia Lorca and Maurice Maeterlink.

In 2012, 2013 and 2014, she worked as assistant to the Artistic Director on the production of Company Dance Center’s end of year Performance at Teatro Alfa in São Paulo. During 2013 and 2014, she devised Company Dance Center‘s Classical Ballet Teaching Method – a structure based on studies of the major methods adapted to the requirements of the school.

In 2013, 2014 and 2015, Gaia attended the Bolshoi Ballet Academy teachers’ course, given in three levels in New York. The Teachers Certification Program provides a systematic and holistic method for classical ballet teaching and has been built based on the Academy’s traditional and respected curriculum, which is based on Vaganova method and is focused on musicality, strength and purity of classical ballet technique. The teachers course program is designed to combine the theoretical and practical work, under the supervision of Academy’s instructors. Her teachers were: Natalya Revich, Ludmila Kovalenko, Ludmila Kolenchenko, Yevgeniya Michkova e Anastasia Ovdienko. After being approved at all levels, she received the official certificate from the Academy.

In 2013, she started compiling the “Encyclopedia of Classical Ballet” originally the brainchild of Company Dance Center – an in-depth treatment of key terms and definitions used in Classical Ballet, mainly technical terms. She is currently working on the development of this project.

In July, 2014, she participated in the 37th World Congress in Dance Research (Athens, Greece) organized by the Conseil International de la Danse – CID (International Dance Council), Unesco.

In December, 2015, after living a long period in Europe, she returned to Brazil and was Stage Manager of the annual Philharmonic Christmas Concert of Universidade Positivo (Positivo University) named “Natal de Kolody”, under the direction of Jô Braska Negrão, in Curitiba, PR, Brazil.

In 2016, from April to September, during weekends, Gaia worked as choreographer, dancer and actress for Literatura e Arte em Cena (Literature and Arts on Stage) Project – this project reached all regions of Brazil (12 main cities). Originally the brainchild of Editora Positivo (Brazilian publisher) in partnership with Jô Braska Negrão, with the support of Brazil’s Ministry of Culture, this project provides a teacher’s course that encompasses cultural production and it is concluded with a dance performance based on an image-book.

Also in 2016, taught classical ballet for 3 to 15 year old students, adults and for pre-professional ballet dancers at Ballet Paula Castro, in São Paulo, SP, Brazil and attended the Methodology Course of La Escuela Nacional de Ballet de La Republica de Cuba (Cuba National Ballet School) with Maitre Ramona de Saá e Niurka Naranjo De Saá.

Moreover, in March, 2016, she attended the Functional Analysis in Classical Ballet Practice Course with Zélia Monteiro, who has Klauss Vianna’s movement principles as her primary basis of her creative and pedagogical research.

During January, 2018, Gaia worked as a volunteer for Limited Resource Teacher Training (LRTT) in Nepal. LRTT is a Global Teacher Movement working to make quality education a reality for all. It leads Teacher Training programmes in 12 countries around the world – in Africa, Asia, South America and the Caribbean. It focuses on building strong partnerships with organizations working in areas where teachers receive little or no formal teacher training.

Gaia has moved to Australia where she hopes to stay and grow with the Academy.

Emily Bleeker

Tap Lecturer & Administration 

Emily has been studying dance and performing arts all her life, learning styles such as Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre, Ballet, Singing, Drama and Contemporary. Emily has also had a wide variety of performance experience playing lead roles in the Academy’s productions, as well as in youth theatre productions around Victoria.

A student of MA Arts Herself, Emily first joined the MA Arts teaching faculty in 2013 as an assistant teacher, where she gained knowledge and skills to assist her transition into dance teaching in 2014. She has also assisted at MA Arts with administration, choreography, and teaching as part of a Work Experience program.

Currently, alongside her work at MA Arts, Emily is studying a Bachelor of Education (Honours) and Bachelor of Arts at Monash University, in order to further her knowledge and understanding of teaching and learning. Emily is passionate about dance as well as adolescent and childhood development and aims to create a nurturing and enthusiastic classroom environment in which her students can develop their own passions in dance technique and performance.