Dance is a powerful tool. Our education and outreach programs inspire confidence, creativity, and health throughout the Greater Milwaukee community, reaching more than 30,000 people annually.Learn More
Rolando Yanes | Director
Rolando Yanes is a native of Villa Clara, Cuba. He received training at the Professional School of the Arts and the Vocational School of Ballet in Santa Clara, Cuba. While in Cuba, Yanes was a principal dancer with Ballet de Camaguey under the direction of Fernando Alonso. In 1995, he was awarded the Silver Medal at the prestigious International Ballet Competition in Brasilia, Brazil. Yanes came to the United States in 1996 as a principal dancer with Milwaukee Ballet Company.
Yanes expanded his diverse classical and contemporary repertoire at Milwaukee Ballet dancing leading roles in such ballets as Romeo & Juliet, Swan Lake, Coppélia, The Nutcracker and Giselle. His powerful technique and unparalleled partnering skills led to principal roles in La Esmeralda, Spartacus, Troy Game, Who Cares?, Diana and Acteon and Le Corsaire, as well as major works from leading choreographers like George Balanchine, Choo-San Goh, Robert Joffrey and Kathryn Posin. He has performed with numerous companies such as Ballet Taller de San Juan (Puerto Rico) and in The International Ballet Festivals in Havana, Cuba and Maracaibo, Venezuela.
Yanes became the director of Milwaukee Ballet II in 2001. Since 2004, Yanes has also been directing Milwaukee Ballet School & Academy. He has created original work for the school including Alice in Wonderland, The Adventures of the Cipollino and The Giant’s Garden. He has been a judge in international and national ballet competitions including the American Youth Competition, DATE Competition in Sendai, Japan and the Japan Grand Prix.
Mireille Favarel | Associate Director
Mireille Favarel was born in Toulon, France. After studying with Rosella Hightower at the Centre de Danse International in Cannes, Lydia Menchova from the Bolshoi, Robert Bestonso from the Royal Ballet and Raymond Franchetti from the Paris Opera, Favarel began her professional career at 17 with Ballet du Rhin in Strasbourg. She subsequently joined Royal Ballet of Flanders in Belgium as a soloist, where she performed her first principal role as Swanhilda in August Bournonville’s Coppelia at 19. Favarel later joined Ballet der Deutsch Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf, Germany as a soloist, under the direction of Paolo Bortoluzzi as well as Ballet du Nord in Roubaix, France, under the direction of Alphonso Cata as a principal dancer.
In addition to appearing with the Ballet du Nord during many of its international tours, Ms. Favarel represented France in the first New York International Ballet Competition. She was invited to perform in the gala performance for the next competition, and later returned as a coach and teacher for the NYIBC.
Ms. Favarel joined Milwaukee Ballet as a principal dancer in 1989, where she performed all of the major roles in the company repertoire. The most memorable are her interpretations of Swan Lake, Romeo & Juliet, Coppelia, and Giselle. In 1990, dance critic Tom Strini named her “Dancer of the Year” for her work in Swan Lake, Serenade and Coppelia. During her time with Milwaukee Ballet, many choreographers created works for her, including Kathryn Posin’s Tehillim and Bach’s Lunch, as well as Simon Dow’s Spartacus. In May 2000, Favarel gave her farewell performance and became Ballet Mistress for the Company.
Mireille Favarel is currently Associate Director of the Milwaukee Ballet II (MBII). She also teaches and coaches Milwaukee Ballet Company and MBII. Favarel is a frequent guest teacher at major ballet schools and companies in Bulgaria, California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Texas and in her native country of France. In March of 2012, Favarel staged Kathryn Posin’s Scheherazade for the National Ballet of Bulgaria, in Sofia. She staged Scheherazade again for Milwaukee Ballet in 2016. She continues to perform character roles for Milwaukee Ballet, most recently as James’ mother in La Sylphide and the Queen in Swan Lake.
Timothy O'Donnell | Ballet Master
Timothy O’Donnell began training at his mother’s ballet school at age seven. He continued at The Australian Ballet School where he received several awards, including The Australian Institute of Classical Dance’s national choreographic competition. After graduating, he joined West Australian Ballet where he performed principal and soloist roles and worked closely with many celebrated international artists such as Paul Lightfoot, Petr Zuska, Simon Dow, Matjash Morzewski and Ivan Cavallari. In 2007, he won Outstanding Performance by a Male Dancer at the West Australian Dance Awards.
In 2009, O’Donnell won Milwaukee Ballet’s international choreographic competition, Genesis, for The Games We Play. As part of his grand prize, he returned in 2010 to create Boléro–Let There Be Light. Shortly after, he appeared as a choreographer on “So You Think You Can Dance–Australia.”
Since joining Milwaukee Ballet in 2012, O’Donnell has been featured as Marcello in La Bohème, Verdigris (the green stepsister) in Cinderella, and the title character in Dorian Gray.
As the Company’s resident choreographer, he has staged five world premieres: Children of the Wall, Talk to Me, The Sixth Sin, Sans Pleurer and More Truth Than Poetry.
O’Donnell semi-retired from the stage in 2019, and transitioned to become a Character Leading Artist and Ballet Master of the second company.
Michael Pink is the longest serving artistic director in Milwaukee Ballet’s history. Since arriving in 2002, he has demonstrated his commitment to the future of dance through new work, education, and collaboration. His artistic vision for Milwaukee Ballet continues to excite and challenge.Learn More