June 14-29, 2014

The 10th USA IBC opened Saturday, June 14, in the newly renovated Thalia Mara Hall. The Gertrude C. Ford Opening Ceremony included an “Olympic-style” Parade of Nations, introduction and recognition of dignitaries, and lighting of the official torch by past USA IBC medalist Joseph Phillips (2002 Junior Gold). Wes Chapman and Susan Jaffe were master and mistress of ceremonies. Complexions Contemporary Ballet performed “Innervisions,” featuring songs by Stevie Wonder. Jazz dance pioneer and innovator, Luigi, was tapped as the 2014 Honorary Chairman and recognized in a tribute by Janie Parker, one of the many dancers who studied with him.

Parker was the first American dancer to win a gold medal in the USA IBC, taking gold in the senior women’s division in 1982.

Edward Villella chaired the 2014 international jury, whose 11 members included former USA IBC medalists Nina Ananiashvili of Georgia and Gigi Hyatt of Germany. Ninety-two dancers from 20 nations accepted the invitation to compete in Jackson, following review of 232 applicants by the 2014 Competitor Selection Committee made up of Virginia Johnson, artistic director of the Dance Theatre of Harlem; Adam Sklute, artistic director of Ballet West; and Magaly Suarez, founder and director of The Art of Classical Ballet School. William Starrett, artistic director of Columbia City Ballet, and Ravenna Tucker, associate professor of dance at Belhaven University, were evaluators.

The official artist for the 2014 USA IBC was Andrew Bucci, a native of Vicksburg, Mississippi, and past recipient of top arts awards in the state. Bucci’s “Figure in Green” conveyed the celebratory feel of each USA IBC as the competition marked 35 years since its beginning. Present for most of the competition,  Bucci participated in a special Mississippi Homecoming reception, co-sponsored by Visit Mississippi and the Office of Governor Phil Bryant at the Mississippi Museum of Art. Many pieces of his work were exhibited there and in Thalia Mara Hall throughout the competition.

The companion USA IBC Dance School welcomed 270 students from 25 U.S. States and three nations. The USA IBC Teacher Training Program drew 27 students from 11 states and three nations.

The Edward Stierle Contemporary Showcase, a Sunday, June 22, matinee at Jackson Academy Performing Arts Center,  featured contemporary performances by 20 competitors eliminated in Round I.

In one of its last performances as a full-time touring company, Trey McIntyre Project presented selections from “The Vinegar Works: Four Dances of Moral Instruction” and “Mercury Half-Life,” featuring music by Queen, on the competition dark night between Rounds 1 and 2.  As the two-day residency company, TMP also provided a master class and a lecture/demonstration that included founder and artistic director Trey McIntyre. Community members and students from the 2014 USA IBC Dance School attended the demonstration at Belhaven Performing Arts Center.

Other special events included “Lunches with the  USA IBC,”  a Tutu.Com workshop and fashion show, a Regional Dance America performance and the Entergy Grand Prix Ball.


  • Men’s Senior Gold Medalist–Jeong Hansol, Republic of Korea
  • Women’s Senior Gold Medalist–Shiori Kase, Japan
  • Men’s Senior Silver Medalist–Byul Yun, Republic of Korea
  • Women’s Senior Silver Medalist–Tamako Miyazaki, Japan; Irina Sapozhnikova, Russia;
  • Men’s Senior Bronze Medalist–Aaron Smyth, Australia; Ivan Duarte, Brazil
  • Women’s Senior Bronze Medalist–Ga-Yeon Jung, Republic of Korea

Junior Division:

  • Men’s Junior Gold Medalist–Taiyu He, Peoples Republic of China
  • Women’s Junior Gold Medalist–Gisele Bethea, USA
  • Men’s Junior Silver Medalist–Jinsol Eum, Republic of Korea
  • Women’s Junior Silver Medalist–Mackenzie Richter, USA
  • Men’s Junior Bronze Medalist–Gustavo Carvalho, Brazil
  • Women’s Junior Bronze Medalist–Yasmin Lomondo, Brazil; Paulina Guraieb Abella, Mexico

Special Awards:

  • Best Junior Couple–Yasmin Lomondo and Gustavo Carvalho, Brazil
  • Best Senior Couple–Ga-Yeon Jung and Ji Seok Ha, Republic of Korea
  • Choreography Award–Nicholas Blanc for Aaron Smyth “Rendez-Vous”
  • Jury Award of Encouragement Male-Yue Shi, Peoples Republic of China
  • Jury Award of Encouragement Female-Romina Contreras, Chile
  • Robert Joffrey Award of Merit–Daniel Alejandro McCormick-Quintero, Mexico

Contract and Scholarship Offers:

The Joffrey Ballet, under the artistic direction of Ashley Wheater, offered:

  • Dae Han Na and Jeong Hansol, Republic of Korea, positions with the company for the 2015-2016 season
  • Taiyu He and Yue Shi, Peoples Republic of China; Matthew Griffin, USA; and Gustavo Carvalho, Brazil; full scholarships to the 2015 Summer Program with continuation into the Studio Company
  • Blake Kessler, USA, a full scholarship to the 2015 Summer Program with continuation into the Trainee Program.

In addition to the Joffrey Ballet award:

  • Griffin was offered a trainee position with Ballet Memphis for the 2014-2015 season, a one-season contract with Columbia City Ballet and a full tuition scholarship to the 2015 Colorado Ballet Summer Intensive.
  • Ballet West offered Anisa Sinteral-Scott, USA, a position with Ballet West II for the 2014-2015 season.
  • Houston Ballet offered Mackenzie Richter, USA, a position with its Second Company, Houston Ballet II, for the 2014-2015 season.
  • Katherine Barkman, USA, was offered a scholarship for the 2014-2015 school year by The School of the Hamburg Ballet, a one-season contract with Columbia City Ballet and the opportunity to compete in the 2015 Tanzolymp Competition in Berlin.
  • Texas Ballet Theater offered Paula Alves, Brazil, a Trainee contract for the 2014-2015 season.
  • The Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre offered Gisele Bethea a full scholarship and stipend for Fall 2014 and a Studio Company position in Spring 2015.
  • The South Mississippi Ballet Theatre offered Olga Marchenkova and Ilya Artamonov the opportunity to perform leading roles in its 2014-2015 season’s production of The Sleeping Beauty.


  • Edward Villella, USA
  • John Meehan, Australia
  • André Lewis, Canada
  • Feng Ying, China
  • Nina Ananiasvhili, Georgia
  • Gigi Hyatt, Germany
  • Hideo Fukagawa, Japan
  • Alexei Fadeechev, Russia
  • Ashley Wheater, United Kingdom
  • Hae Shik Kim, South Korea
  • Trinidad Vives, Spain

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