Our History 2004- Present
Great Lakes Youth Ballet began in 2004 as the Royal Youth Ballet Company under Joanne Hughes Morscher as the founding Artistic Director. We saw a great deal of success with outreach performances at Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital and local schools. Many of the company alumni went on to college programs and professional careers. In 2008 the Royal Youth Ballet Company went through a name change as well as a new artistic director. Ana Lobe became the new Artistic Director of the Great Lakes Youth Ballet Company. Under her direction we continued to be an integral part of the community as well as many individual student successes.
In 2012 we welcomed our 2nd Artistic/Executive Director Krista Morana. Ms. Morana led Great Lakes Youth Ballet Company until Spring, 2016.
Great Lakes Youth Ballet is excited to introduce our 3rd Artistic Director: Regina Pietraroia.
Ms. Regina will be providing leadership for the company as we move forward to fulfill our mission.
Great Lakes Youth Ballet Company is a 501(c)(3) non-profit youth ballet company. It’s mission is to provide excellence in dance education full of dynamic challenges for young dancers eager to learn and grow with discipline and respect. We are dedicated to nurturing meaningful cultural opportunities for our community and to encourage and inspire through the art of dance. Great Lakes youth Ballet has received public support with local tax dollars from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture to preserve and enrich our region’s artistic and cultural heritage.
Meet our Directors!The Great Lakes Youth Ballet Board of Directors consists of dedicated board members who along with 2016-2017 Artistic Director Regina Pietraroia, lead Great Lakes Youth Ballet in it’s mission, vision, and commitment to the community and it’s dancers.
Joe Nicklos is currently an elementary school principal in Cleveland Heights/University Heights School District. Formerly he was an associate principal at North Olmsted High School, principal at Green High School and principal at Garfield Middle School. He was a founding board member and serves as board president since 2010. Joe has served as Vice President of North Royalton Band Boosters for 9 years and also is a member of National Education Association and Ohio Administrators Association.
Marie Hoffart is a Licensed Social Worker affiliated with Catholic Charities in Medina. Marie has also served as a past President of the Hinckley Women’s Club. She has a background in journalism and media, and has been a Publisher/Editor of the Hinckley Independent, a monthly newsletter serving Eastern Medina County. Marie’s interest in the arts serves as an advocate for the youth of our area to explore the area of dance.