Milwaukee Ballet II (MBII) is a unique program designed to take excellent ballet students and transform them into artists, ready for a professional career. Dancers from around the world are offered daily training with their own artistic staff led by Director Rolando Yanes (Cuba), Associate Director Mireille Favarel (France) and Ballet Master Timothy O’Donnell (Australia). In addition to class with Company and artistic staff, there are multiple opportunities for master classes with visiting choreographers and guest teachers from various disciplines.
This program provides a safe place for growth, experimentation and achievement in dance through rigorous training and performance opportunities. Developed in 1978, MBII has graduated dancers who have danced all over the country, who run their own companies and dance projects, who now make up almost half of our own professional Company and others who have gone on to new adventures and career paths.
Over the course of a season with MBII, dancers grow as artists and people. They learn to live on their own and become a strong, united team working together for shared goals and individual dreams. They learn to advocate for their art form and to work with all kinds of people. They are in an environment where they can experiment with their artistry, open their minds and push their personal boundaries. They leave being ready for the professional world—in dance and in other arenas.
In addition to the artistic endeavors of the program, MBII is a vital part of the Milwaukee Ballet Community Outreach department. MBII dancers are the face of the Company in the community and help bring the power of dance to life through workshops and performances at schools, senior centers and community organizations. Many people in Milwaukee experience the ballet for the first time by seeing the MBIIs perform.