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Professional dancers with WSFB bring their specialized skill set, training, and life experiences to the classroom along with professional teaching faculty.  Ensemble students experience a variety of instructors/master classes on a rotating basis for maximum training diversity.

Rita Taylor


R Taylor

RITA TAYLOR, CEO and  Executive Director of WSFB is also Director of  Festival Dance Center. Rita oversees all scheduling, curriculum, and faculty.  Rita has a BFA in performance & choreography and a BA in psychology, Graduate studies in clinical counseling and has been a dancer, teacher, choreographer, and director for the past 30 years. With a diverse background in the performing arts and over 100 productions in classical ballet and musical theatre, she is a respected member of the arts community.

Gary Taylor


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GARY TAYLOR, Founder and Artistic Director of Winston-Salem Festival Ballet takes a very active interest in the school.  He visits classrooms and consistently teaches master classes to upper level ensemble students.  Gary is considered a premiere expert in classical ballet, pointe, and partnering training. Students also receive the mastery of his choreography as his works are often adapted for student performance.






Elizabeth Fowle
Ballet Master



ELIZABETH FOWLE, Ballet Master, Faculty. Elizabeth, is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts with a BFA in  Contemporary Dance focusing on contemporary, ballet and composition. Ms. Fowle has a diverse training background in ballet, pointe, partnering,  contemporary, ballroom, jazz, hip hop, musical theatre, and tap, and was a member of the pre-professional companies Taylor Dance/Moore OnStage  and High Point Ballet. Currently, Elizabeth performs with Winston-Salem  Festival Ballet.  elizabeth

Carol  Johnson



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CAROL JOHNSON, Faculty. Faculty Liason.  Carol holds a BS degree in Dance from Radford University and also studied with the Eglevsky School of Ballet and PointPark College in Pittsburgh,PA.  Carol has choreographed numerous musicals and industrials for theatre companies, schools, and businesses in North Carolina and Virginia.  She has served on the faculty of University of  N.C.School of the Arts Winter Dance Festival since 1997.

Julia Cox-Taylor



JULIE COX TAYLOR, Faculty. Julie trained with Virginia School of the Arts and then joined Nashville Ballet's Second Company, Paradise Ballet Theatre, and Richmond Ballet. She was a guest artist, teacher, and choreographer for Appalachian Ballet Company, Oak Ridge Civic Ballet, Tennessee Children's Dance Ensemble, and Go! Contemporary Dance Works. Julie also trains competitively in Ballroom and Latin dance and performs with Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.

India Green



INDIA GREEN, Faculty, India has trained in both Cecchetti and Vaganova techniques and studied tap and clogging with mistress Heather Ellis.  White obtaining her Arts degree scholastically, she toured with Arts Evangelica’s Dance Company and has attended Ballet Magnificat summer intensives for two years.  EMT certified with a focus on injury prevention, India serves as a faculty member and performs with Winston Salem Festival Ballet.

Jessica McAlister



JESSICA FRY MCALISTER,  Faculty, trained and performed with the New Orleans Youth Ballet, Delta Festival Ballet and Joffrey II in New York. Professionally, Jessica performed with Ballet Austin, Colorado Ballet, Greensboro Ballet, and the Ballet Theatre of Maryland.  SHe and her husband, David worked with Long Island Ballet Theatre, Eglevsky Ballet, Brooklyn Ballet, Hartford City Ballet and Montgomery Ballet. She has also worked for 13 years with the Burklyn Ballet Theatre. Jessica has been teaching for over 15 years and performs with Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.

Ryan Taylor Guest Faculty


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RYAN TAYLOR, Faculty, Ryan, a graduate of UNCSA in contemporary dance, has a diverse training background in ballet, partnering, contemporary, ballroom, jazz, hip hop, musical theatre, Tap, and aerial work.  He performed with the pre-professional company, High Point Ballet and also performed professionally with Momix. Ryan currently works with Royal Carribean Cruise Lines and performs with Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.

Guest Faculty



 LEVIZADIK BUCKINS, (Shadeek), Guest Faculty, Shadeek began his dance education at the Educational Center for the Arts in New Haven, Connecticut. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, under the direction Ethan Stiefel. During his time at UNCSA, he worked with choreographers such as Brenda Daniels, Trish Casey, and Diego Schoch.  He has also had the chance to work with well-known choreographers Maurya Kerr, Larry Keigwin, Scott Rink, and Trish Lent. Shadeek frequently teaches nationally and performs with Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.

Jake Stainback Guest Faculty



JAKE STAINBACK, Guest Faculty, is a native of Winston-Salem, NC. He began his training at the Wake Forest Community Ballet and later went on to attend high school at UNCSA. Jake is an alumnus of The Juilliard School, He is also an alumnus of The Stella Adler Studio of Acting, and of Circus Warehouse.  Jake has also attended the National Circus School in Montreal. Professionally, Jake has performed with Larry Keigwin, Alonzo King LINES Ballet, Mark Dendy and Dancers, and tours worldwide with MOMIX Dance Theater. He also performs with Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.

Brandon Woods Guest Faculty



BRANDON WOODS, Faculty. Brandon has a BFA from UNC School of the Arts where he has been featured in performances by Eric Oberdorff, Sean Sullivan, Trish Casey, Zane Booker, Juel Lane and many others. He has taught dance and choreographed for various Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools and performed for Cyrus Art Productions, Theatre of West Virginia, and Shenandoah Ballet, and Winston-Salem Festival Ballet.


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GARY TAYLOR, Founder and Artistic Director

RITA TAYLOR, CEO and Executive Director


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Home (Let’s start at the beginning)

About The Company (Who are we?)

Original Works (By Gary Taylor)

Meet Gary Taylor (Founder & Artistic Director)

Calendar of Events (What’s happening)

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