(Classical Ballet) Irina graduated from a nine year
program at the Professional Classical Ballet School of Cluj, Romania. She
became a solo dancer at the Iasi Opera performing in Giselle, Swan Lake, Don
Quixote, Faust and other classical and modern ballets. Upon completion of
the three year program in ballet education at the Bucharest Institute of
Choreography, which included courses in history of dance, ballet
methodology, physiology and pedagogy, she obtained her degree in Ballet
Education. She began teaching ballet in 1974, and since 1981 has offered
Classical Ballet classes in Highland Park, bringing the Vaganova-Tarasov
method to the North Shore.
LILLA MAKKAI DANIELS
(Ballet, Pointe, and Pre-Ballet) Lilla started her
ballet education with Irina Makkai. She has also studied with Larry
Long, Dan Duell and Homer Bryant. For years she has been a scholarship
student at the Houston Ballet Academy, Joffrey Ballet School and the
School of American Ballet. Lilla has performed with Bryant Ballet,
Ballet Chicago, Ballet Theater of Chicago, and the Lyric Opera of
Chicago in such ballets as; Giselle, Coppelia, and the Nutcracker. She
will continue teaching Pre-Ballet, Ballet and Pointe classes. Lilla also
established the Ballet Makkai Youth Company which participates in such
festivals as the Dance Chicago Festival, Annual Student Choreographic
Workshop and produces the school's annual performance of the Nutcracker.
For details on this program please e-mail Lilla at:
(Jazz, Tap) Sara attended the National Academy of Arts, in
Champagne, Illinois, where she also began her career as an instructor.
Sara has taught at Western Kentucky University, Gus Giordano Dance
Center and Dance Educators of America. Her professional performing
experience has been with the Linda Martha Dance Company, Especially Tap
Company, Gus Giordano Dance Chicago, and is a founding member of the
River North Dance Company. Sara is currently the Assistant to the
Artistic Director and Workshop Coordinator of River North Chicago. She
is also a recipient of the Ruth Page Award for Excellence in Dance. Sara
has been on the School's faculty for the past twenty years, and will
continue teaching, and overseeing our Jazz, Tap, and Modern classes.
(Pre-Dance, Ballet) joined
the faculty of the school two years ago. She studied ballet with Dmitri
Ruednev in Chicago, at the Harid Conservatory and was a scholarship
student of our school. Upon graduation from highschool Ashley continued
her ballet education at the University of Utah. She performed with Dance
Alive National Ballet in various roles from The Nutcracker and other
classical and modern pieces choreographed by Kim Tuttle and Judy
Skinner. In 2013 Ashley returned to the Chicago area and started
teaching Pre-Dance and Ballet classes at our school. Students, as well
as parents like her very much and we are happy to have her back as one
of our talented teachers.
LEVIZADIK BUCKINS (Modern) began his dance
education at the Educational Center for the Arts in New Haven,
Connecticut. He is a graduate of the University of North Carolina School
of the Arts, under the direction Ethan Stiefel. During his time at
UNCSA, he worked with choreographers such as Brenda Daniels, Trish
Casey, and Diego Schoch. He has also had the chance to work with
well-known choreographers Maurya Kerr, Larry Keigwin, Scott Rink, and
Trish Lent. He has performed professionally with the Winston-Salem
Festival of Ballet under the direction of Gary Taylor in North Carolina,
and River North Dance Chicago under the direction of Frank Chaves.
Levizadik currently lives in Chicago, Illinois.
(Ballet) Terry began his dance training at the Ruth Page Foundation
School of Dance. He spent twelve years there before joining Pittsburgh Ballet Theater in 1994.
He was then invited to join Nationaltheater Mannheim in Germany. Terence joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in 2006.
While dancing with the company Terence was commissioned to create two works with Hubbard Street 2 and
began teaching in the newly created summer intensives as well as teaching regular company class. In 2010,
Terence retired from dancing and became Rehearsal Director for Hubbard Street. In 2013 Terence became
director of Hubbard Street 2 where he commissioned new works from choreographers, created original
programming and toured the company internationally. In 2019 Terry founded COMMON Conservatory.
We are very excited to have Terry join our faculty!
(Pre-Dance, Ballet) We are so
excited to welcome home Meghan Howe teaching for us since last fall.
Meghan trained at Ballet Makkai and attended Summer Intensives at
Milwaukee Ballet and Joffrey Ballet. She recently graduated from
Vanderbilt University where she was the captain of the Vanderbilt Dance
Team and Performed various works with the Vanderbilt Dance Theatre under
the direction of Jennifer McNamara, Kelvin Amburgey, and Tom Shoemaker.
We are so happy to have her back with the Ballet Makkai Family! Meghan
will be teaching Pre-Dance along with Miss Ashley, Miss Helen and Miss
(Ballet)Olivia was born and raised in Haslett, Michigan.
She received her early training at the Happendance School under the direction of Diane Newman
and Patricia Villanueva and performed for several years with Capitol Ballet Theatre of Michigan
under the direction of Gregory George. Accepted into the Joffrey Academy, Official School of
The Joffrey Ballet in 2014, Ms. Duryea danced as a Trainee from 2014-2016. She was then invited
to join the Joffrey Studio Company for the 2016-2017 season.
In 2017 Ms. Duryea joined the Joffrey Ballet. Since dancing with the company, she has performed in the
world premiere of Christopher Wheeldon’s “The Nutcracker” and Yuri Possokhov’s “Anna Karenina”. She also
performed featured roles in Jerome Robbin’s “Glass Pieces”, George Balanchine’s “The Four Temperaments”,
Liam Scarlett’s “Vespertine”, and Justin Peck’s “The Times are Racing”.
Ballet Makkai Youth Company & The Ballet Makkai Nutcracker
2126 First Street,
Highland Park Illinois 60035 (847) 433-1449