Founder and Artistic Director of Sierra Nevada Ballet, Rosine Bena was a professional ballerina who danced throughout the US and Europe with the Stuttgart Ballet, The Washington Ballet, and Peninsula Ballet Theatre. She received critical acclaim as a “Prima” for principal roles in ballets such as Giselle, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Romeo & Juliet, Coppelia, La Fille Mal Gardee and contemporary works by choreographers such as John Cranko, Jiri Kylian and many others. In addition to guest performing with various ballet companies, Bena danced opposite Patrick DuPond of the Paris Opera in the movie, She Dances Alone.
Bena has choreographed and directed over 60 professional productions and numerous non- professional productions and her choreography has been favorably compared to the work of choreographers such as George Balanchine, John Cranko, Kurt Joos and Michael Smuin.
She is a guest master teacher for the Regional Dance America Ballet Festivals, and was elected as RDA Adjudicator for the national festival in 2012, as Adjudicator for the Pacific Region in 2013 and as a master Teacher for the Southwest Festival in 2014. Bena is a member of the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science lecturing and teaching ballet and injury prevention throughout the US and Europe.
Rosine was given the title of “Outstanding Individual Artist 1992” by the San Mateo County Arts Council and honored by the US Congress and the Ca. State Legislature for her work in the arts. Rosine moved to Nevada in 2000 and founded SNB in 2001. In 2008 she was awarded an Endowment from the Sierra Arts Foundation and a Fellowship from The Nevada State Arts Council for her outstanding artistic work as a choreographer and director in northern Nevada.
The recipient of numerous grant awards, Ms. Bena received the 2015 Challenge America Award from the National Endowment For The Arts for her SNB holiday classic, Peanutcracker – The Story In A Nutshell.
As a former graduate of the Academy of the Washington School of Ballet, Rosine was one of the alumni honored at the Kennedy Center and the White House by the Clintons and in Who’s Who in America in the category of Outstanding Americans. Bena is one of the first of 60 master teachers in the world to be fully certified to teach all levels of the American Ballet Theatre National Training Ballet Curriculum and act as ABT ambassador. Bena joined the staff of ABT in 2010 teaching in two of their five national ballet summer programs.
In addition to her work with the SNB company, Bena is the founder and Artistic Director of Sierra Nevada Ballet Academy, based in Reno, Nevada and is also the Director of Ballet for SNB affiliated school, Western Nevada Performing Arts Center, in Carson City, Nevada. Ms. Bena writes a monthly column on dance for the Reno Gazette Journal and continues to guest teach and choreograph throughout the USA and Europe.