Valley dancers picked by Joffrey Ballet |

Valley dancers picked by Joffrey Ballet

Linda Hiller

Nine student dancers from the Pinkerton Academy of Dance in Carson City have been invited to attend a special 1997 summer school in New York City with the Joffrey Ballet .

Dance students from many area schools auditioned in Reno last month.

“Most of the students who auditioned were intermediate or advanced students,” said Vickie McMaster, co-owner of the academy and one of the instructors. “We are very proud of these kids. This is the first time Joffrey has come here and everyone who auditioned, made it. We hope they’ll come back.”

The summer workshop – eight weeks in New York – is a rare opportunity for students in ballet, tap and jazz dance to study with the well-known Joffrey Ballet school.

After being selected, however, students and their parents were faced with the cost of attending the program, which is around $8,000 per student. This doesn’t include the price of room and board in the city for two months. Additionally, each child must have a parent or guardian with them in New York.

Fortunately, the Joffrey school does offer some tuition scholarships. Unfortunately, this just covers tuition.

The students who were invited are: Anne Ristorcelli, Kristen Schell, Kaitlyn Harris, Misha Harris, Erica Chipp, Rachel Chipp, Jonathan Renwick (scholarship), Tiffany Renwick and Georgia Wright.

Their dance teachers are: McMaster, co-owner Ayako Britt, Gina Kaskie and Kyle Tucker.

According to mom, Peggy Ristorcelli, the school only accepts a total of 250 students. With the high costs of attending, she said it is doubtful that her daughter, Anne, 12, will attend this year.

“We can always shoot for the future and save up ahead of time, but it is a lot of money to come up with on such short notice.” Ristorcelli also has two other dance students in the family.

Instead, students will likely be attending Pinkerton’s own summer program, where teachers from as far away as Washington, D.C. and Hawaii will come to teach.