Performing, teamwork and unique opportunities

When: Sunday, April 28, 2024
Time: 2:00 - 3:30
Where: Nan Klinger Excellence in Dance
Dancers must be 8-16 (must have turned 8 as of Sept 2024)

$25 audition fee payable at registration.

There will be a parent information session in waiting room during the audition.




VISION: ROAD® is Ballet Excel Ohio’s outreach dedicated to educating underserved children through the art of dance. We serve students who otherwise would not have the opportunity to experience dance & positively change the trajectory of their lives

MISSION: ROAD ® is Ballet Excel Ohio’s outreach intended to educate children who would otherwise be unable to access the art of dance. ROAD ® fulfills this mission through in-school residencies, immersion in preprofessional dance instruction, and community educational performances.




Each year, more than 30 community organizations partner with us to bring the magic of ballet to as many young audience members as possible.

Ballet Excel Ohio provides free tickets to children and their families who might otherwise be unable to attend our annual storybook performance series at the Akron Civic Theatre*.

Please contact our Vice President of Development for more information on including your organization in this program.

*ADA Accessible


Laszlo Berdo was born in Grand Rapids, MI, where he began dancing at the age of five and Laszlo later intensified his studies at the National Academy of Arts in Champaign, IL.

Upon graduation, he first joined Ballet Austin and then the Louisville Ballet. He was later hired as a guest artist then later as a soloist with Cincinnati Ballet. Laszlo joined the Boston Ballet in 1990 as a corps de ballet member, was promoted to soloist in 1993 and became a principal dancer in 1995. As a principal, he danced numerous roles by Cranko, McMillan, Balanchine, Bournonville, Hynd Stevenson, Tharp, Taylor, Feld, Butler and York. Laszlo is honored to be the first to perform the lead role in Cranko’s Eugene Onegin in the United States.

He began choreographing in 1993, creating the pas de deux Eternal Being which later was performed for a Boston Ballet gala. Four Hands premiered in March of 1998, and was performed in the International Ballet Competition in Jackson, MS, and at a summer festival in Biarritz, France. In 1999, Laszlo created Below Down Under which premiered at the Shubert Theatre in February 1999. In March of 2001 he created Sanctuary for the Norwegian National Ballet in Oslo. He choreographed Bass Elements for the Boston Conservatory and participated in ChoreoPlan 2001 in which he created Concertante for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet. Laszlo staged Four Hands for the Finnish National Ballet in Helsinki which premiered in October 2002.

From 2000 to 2003 he was a faculty member for the Boston Conservatory and Harvard University. In 2003, he joined the faculty of CPYB full time. In 2008, Laszlo choreographed Snow White, premiered Peter Pan in 2009, restaged Swan Lake in 2011, and premiered Carnival of the Animals in 2011. In 2010, Laszlo was commissioned to choreograph for the Eglevsky Ballet, The Nutcracker premiered in December of 2010. He was appointed Artistic Director and School Director of Eglevsky Ballet in 2011. Under Laszlo’s leadership, Eglevsky Ballet opened its doors to the community with a brand new state-of-art facility in Bethpage, NY, reestablishing Eglevsky Ballet as the premiere ballet school and only professional company on Long Island.

Ms. Diniz is thrilled to have choreographed Gaga Games for Ballet Excel Ohio and has been commissioned to create new works for Jacob's Pillow, Performance Santa Fe, Avant Chamber Ballet, two ballets for Columbia Ballet Collaborative, Ballet Hartford, Woman in Motion and Central Utah Ballet. She made her Off-Broadway choreographic debut at the AMT Theatre with 'An Unbalanced Mind' and was awarded a grant from the New York Foundation for the Arts/City Artist Corps to present a full evening of her choreography in 2021.

She was a featured choreographer for DanceBreak (musical theater's leading platform for new Broadway choreographers) and will be Artist in Residence at Tribeca BMCC via CUNY Dance Initiative for the 2022/2023 season. She also presented work at the McCallum Theatre/Palm Desert Choreography Festival, Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning 'Making Moves' Festival and the New York Theatre Barn Choreography Lab at Baryshnikov Arts Center last fall and has a commission from Earl Mosley’s Diversity of Dance to premiere January 2023.

She is a winner of the New York Dance Project Choreography Competition, a junior board member of Jazz Choreography Enterprises, a choreographic mentor for We Are Queens and her work has been shown in Stars of American Ballet rep, New York Choreographers’ Forum, the Steps Beyond Foundation performance lab, Nebula Dance Festival and the Higher Ground Festival, among others. She also choreographed the AEA production of the Vaudevillian musical 'On the Air,' currently choreographs and assistant directs intermittent musical theater showcases at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy and has served as Associate Choreographer for Lorin Latarro.

She is on faculty at Kanyok Arts Initiative and Manhattan Youth Ballet and has also enjoyed teaching for Steps on Broadway, Peridance, EMIA (Earl Mosley), Manhattan Dance Artistry, Manhattan Ballet School, Montana Ballet, Ballet Hartford, Dance Conservatory of Charleston, NextGeneration Ballet and Dance Open.

Ms. Diniz has a B.A. in English (concentration in Shakespearean Studies, minor in Dance) from Cornell University.

Professor Michael Vernon started dancing at the Nest Brooking School of Ballet in London before studying at the Royal Ballet School in London with such legendary teachers as Dame Ninette de Valois and Leonide Massine. He performed with the Royal Ballet, the Royal Opera Ballet, and the London Festival Ballet before moving to New York in 1976 to join the Eglevsky Ballet as ballet master and resident choreographer. He retained those positions under the directorship of the famed Edward Villella, and himself became artistic director of the Long Island-based company in 1989. He remained in that position until 1996.

Vernon choreographed numerous ballets for the Eglevsky Ballet, in addition to ballets for many professional companies in the United States and worldwide, such as BalletMet of Columbus, Ohio, and North Carolina Dance Theatre. Mikhail Baryshnikov commissioned him to choreograph the highly successful pas de deux In a Country Garden for American Ballet Theatre (ABT). His solo S'Wonderful was danced by ABT principal Cynthia Harvey in the presence of President and Mrs. Reagan and shown nationwide on CBS television. He also served as assistant choreographer on Ken Russell's movie Valentino, starring Rudolph Nureyev and Leslie Caron.

Vernon has taught at Steps on Broadway (New York City) since 1980, working with dancers from New York City Ballet, ABT, and many other high-profile companies. He is an integral part of the Manhattan Dance Project, which brings New York-style master classes to all regions of the United States. He has been involved with the Ballet Program of the Chautauqua Institute since 1996 and is Artistic Director for the Ballet School of Stamford (Conn). In addition, he is permanent guest teacher at the Manhattan Youth Ballet and has had a long association with Ballet Hawaii. He taught for the Alvin Ailey American Dance theatre and its school for 18 years.
Vernon has been company teacher for American Ballet Theatre, Dance Theatre of Harlem, the Metropolitan Opera Ballet, and the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. He has guest taught in companies all over the world, including the West Australian Ballet, the National Ballet of China, the Hong Kong Ballet, the Birmingham Royal Ballet, Berlin Ballet, the Royal Swedish Ballet, and the Norwegian Ballet. He has been a guest teacher for The Juilliard School and The Joffrey School, and recently joined the panel of judges for the Youth America Grand Prix regional semi-finals.

Since being appointed Chair of the Ballet Department at the Jacobs School of Music, Vernon has choreographed Cathedral (2006), Endless Night (2009), Jeux (2010) and the ever popular seasonal ballet The Nutcracker. He has staged and provided additional choreography for the full-length classics Swan Lake (with American ballerina Cynthia Gregory) and The Sleeping Beauty. He re-choreographed Spectre de la Rose (the ballet that made Nijinsky famous) for New York City Ballet Principal Daniel Ulbricht.

He has choreographed for many IU Opera Theater productions, including Faust, Cendrillon, Rigoletto, and most recently supplied the movement for the world premiere of Vincent.

A native of Ohio holds degrees in both painting and dance from Ohio University. Upon graduation Tom moved to New York City to apprentice with The Murray Louis and Alwin Nikolais Dance Companies. From 1975-77 toured as a dancer and arts-in-education teacher with the Phyllis Lamhut Dance Company. His critical acclaim and maturity as a performing artist, however, developed while performing and touring nationally and internationally with "The Paul Taylor Dance Company" for eight years (1977-1985). In 1986 he founded the "Tom Evert Dance Company" and created a major body of work for which he has received Six Fellowships for Excellence in Choreography from the Ohio Arts Council and the Arts Council of Fairfax County VA. The company (currently DANCEVERT) presents a home season and has toured extensively and is dedicated to outreach and collaborative community projects. He has been commissioned to create works for professional and pre-professional dance companies, university ensembles, and art institutions and commercial enterprises including: Cleveland San Jose Ballet, Cuyahoga Valley Youth Ballet, The Cleveland Orchestra, The Cleveland Museum Of Art, the Darius Milhaud Society, the Leonard Bernstein Festival, the Kurt Weill Festival, the Cleveland Pops Orchestra, fashion shows, civic celebrations, and the list goes on. He has been on numerous dance faculties including The Hong Kong Academy of the Arts, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Lake Erie College, Cleveland State University, the University of Akron, and The Paul Taylor Dance Studio in New York City, Cleveland Ballet, and The Beck Center for the Arts, Ohio Northern University, and Dennison University among many others. Mr. Evert is regularly engaged to give master classes in tandem with company performances. After being involved in arts education programming in the schools for 31 years Mr. Evert has emerged as a prominent “teaching artist” nationally and internationally and on the artists rosters of Young Audiences Inc., The Ohio Arts Council and a Statewide Arts Talent Assessment Initiative (START-ID). Through the sponsorship of the Kennedy Center’s Ohio-State-Based Partnership, Tom has been actively presenting workshops for teachers on the integration of arts activities into the teaching of the core curriculum. Tom, who began his college career in the visual arts, designs and constructs many of the sets for his dances, is also a muralist and is a sculptor of figurative works for which he has received commissions and prizes in invitational shows.

“A force for good in the ballet world” (Wall Street Journal), Tom Gold is the founder and director of Tom Gold Dance. A 21-year member (1987–2008) of New York City Ballet where he rose to the rank of soloist, Gold has also performed with THARP!, New York City Opera, Donald Byrd/The Group and many other companies throughout the United States. At City Ballet, he performed leading roles in works by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins, Lynne Taylor-Corbett, and William Forsythe. In 2002 Susan Stroman created the ballet Double Feature for Mr. Gold. In demand internationally as a guest artist, choreographer, and instructor, Gold has created more than a dozen original works for Tom Gold Dance as well as for Vassar College, the Bermuda Arts Festival, Oregon Ballet Theater, the New York City Ballet Choreographic Institute, and many other dance academies, companies, festivals, television, and special events, including the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the Bravo series Odd Mom Out starring Jill Kargman, and the New York City Fringe Festival for which he won the 2016 award for Overall Excellence for his work in the Joey Variations: A Play With Dance. Gold has collaborated with composers John Zorn, Augusta Reed Thomas, and Thomas Lauderdale of Pink Martini, as well as numerous scenic and costume designers. He is the featured performer and choreographer of the 2wice Arts Foundation’s DOT DOT DOT, an interactive iPad application designed by Abbott Miller of Pentagram. Gold has been called “as fine a choreographer as…he was a dancer – perhaps better” (Critical Dance). He “sees dance, as Balanchine or Neumier, as a way to innovate and explore the boundaries of classical dance, pushing the envelope in a manner that is true to the fundamentals of the technique” (NYC Dance Stuff).

For more information visit his website at

Erich Yetter began his ballet training in Texas under Ingeborg Heuser (Staatsoper Berlin), and later with Fernando Schaffenburg (Ballet Russes de Monte Carlo) at Texas Christian University, and at the Houston Ballet Academy under Ben Stevenson, O.B.E. (Royal Ballet). He studied in New York City with David Howard and Maggie Black and Marjorie Mussman, and subsequently danced as a principal danced in London with Dance For Everyone, and also in Cork, Ireland with The Irish National Ballet. Upon returning to the states Yetter performed with Ballet Memphis in Tennessee for twelve years, after which he retired from the stage. During this time, he finished a Bachelor of Music cum laude from the University of Texas at El Paso.
After Memphis, Yetter served ten years as Artistic Director of Peoria Ballet in Illinois, working with international guest artists and building that company's national reputation. After earning a Master's of Science in Higher Education from Kaplan University in Chicago, Yetter accepted a position as Visiting Faculty Lecturer in Ballet at The University of Akron, where he taught Advanced and Intermediate Ballet technique, Pointe technique, Ballet History, and a general education course for non-majors entitled Viewing Dance. He also wrote articles for the Chronicle of Higher Education including an extensive interview with Jennifer Homans, who wrote the bestselling book on ballet history, Apollo's Angels.
Yetter has choreographed and directed over 70 works, from full-length ballets to small chamber dances. In addition, he has collaborated with and created movement for theaters, opera companies and symphony orchestras. As a dancer, he performed standard classical ballet repertoire as well as ballets by contemporary choreographers such as George Balanchine, Domy Reiter-Soffer, James Clouser and Trey McIntyre. In 1999 Yetter was awarded the Tennessee Commission for the Arts Individual Fellowship for Choreography and subsequently his dance work, Asturias, was featured at the American Choreographer's Showcase in Guatemala. For seven years he adjudicated on the Dance Grant Panel of the Illinois Arts Council, as well as the 2009 Federal Arts Jobs Preservation Grant Panel, dispersing government stimulus funds. In 2010, Yetter received a Challenge America Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for his production of Romeo and Juliet.
In addition to teaching ballet at Case Western Reserve University, Yetter serves on the ballet faculty for Cleveland School of the Arts and the Board of Directors of OhioDance. He has taught master classes for VERB Ballets, The American College Dance Festival, Ohio Northern University, Youngstown State University Dance Festival and the Dance Institute at the University of Akron. He lives in Akron with his wife, Mary Ragna Yetter, and their three children Evan, Clara and Jacob.

A Minneapolis native, Mr. Sewell moved to New York and studied at the School of American Ballet with David Howard, and began performing with ABT II. He was a lead dancer with Feld Ballets/NY for six years and has performed as a guest artist with the New York City Ballet, Zvi Gottheiner and Dancers, and Denishawn. He has choreographed more than 70 ballets for companies in the United States and around the world. Projects include the New York City Ballet's Choreographic Institute, the New York State Council on the Arts grant to create "Independence In Dependence" for Feld Ballets/NY; "Aida" (1998) for the Minnesota Opera and 11 other opera companies; James Sewell Ballet's "Amahl and the Night Visitors" (1995); "Musical Toys" (1996) and "Nutcracker: The Untold Story" (1997) for the Minnesota Orchestra; and "She Loves Me" (2005) and "1776" (2007) for the Guthrie Theater.