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Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre announces hires, departures

| Tuesday, May 12, 2015, 9:11 p.m.
Hannah Carter has been promoted to soloist for the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre.
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre
Hannah Carter has been promoted to soloist for the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre.

Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre will have a roster of 30 dancers next season as a result of three hires, one promotion and two departures announced on May 11.

Hannah Carter, who was promoted to soloist, is a graduate of the Royal Ballet School in London and danced with the Estonian National Ballet before joining Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's corps de ballet two years ago. She has danced several leading roles with the company, including Nikiya in “La Bayadere,” Marie in “The Nutcracker” and the Lilac Fairy in “Sleeping Beauty.”

The three dancers hired as apprentices, who will perform with the corps de ballet, have each performed in many Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre productions while in the ballet school's graduate program.

• Jessica McCann also trained with Alonzo King's Lines Contemporary Ballet in San Francisco and completed summer intensives with American Ballet Theatre in New York City.

• Emily Simpson was born in England, trained in Russia, Thailand and England, and performed internationally before coming to the ballet's school.

• Kurtis Sprowls studied at the Ohio Conservatory of Ballet in Akron and the Nederlands Dans Theater's summer intensive program in The Hague, Netherlands.

The three will perform at the school's pre-professional showcase, May 15 to 17, and spring performance, May 22.

Principal dancer Nurlan Abougaliev, who joined the company in 2006, and soloist Elysa Hotchkiss, who joined in 2004, are leaving to pursue other opportunities.

— Mark Kanny

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