Dawnell Dryja

Company Member since 2002

Dawnell is a Michigan native now in her twelfth season with the Grand Rapids Ballet. Dawnell was trained under her mother, Dawn Greene. She also studied at Chicago Ballet School, Cleveland Ballet School and Milwaukee Ballet School on scholarship. Dawnell previously danced with Tulsa Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, Dayton Ballet, and Metropolitan Ballet Theatre of Detroit before joining the Grand Rapids ballet in 2002. Her repertoire includes many leading roles from the classics to contemporary master pieces. Dawnell has had the opportunity to work with esteemed choreographers and teachers such as Nils Christe, Frederick Franklin, Kirk Peterson, Val Caniporoli, Suzanne Farrell, and Raymond Lukens to name a few. While dancing with the Grand Rapids Ballet, Dawnell has had the opportunity to perform in concert with Bela Fleck and the Flecktones and the John Jorgenson Quintet.

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Original Leading Roles:

Black Swan White Swan, Mario Radacovsky
Gift of the Magi, Gordon Peirce Schmidt
Peter Pan, Gordon Peirce Schmidt
Aladdin, Gordon Peirce Schmidt
Firebird, Gordon Peirce Schmidt
Jack The Ripper, Gordon Peirce Schmidt

Leading Roles:

Who Cares?, George Balanchine
Con Amore, Lew Christensen
Le Corsaire Pas de Trois, Marius Petipa
Paquita, Marius Petipa
Diana and Acteon Pas de Deux, Marius Petipa
Dracula, Roger Van Fleteren & Wes Chapman
Red Angels, Ulysses Dove
Serenade, George Balanchine
Nine Sinatra Songs, George Balanchine
Sleeping Beauty, Marius Petipa
Where the Wild Things Are, Septime Webre
Cinderella, Gordon Peirce Schmidt

Original Featured Roles:

Romeo & Juliet, Mario Radacovsky
The Sofa, Olivier Wevers

Featured Roles:

This is Not a Raincoat, Olivier Wevers

Cincinnati Ballet:

Titania, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Peter Anastos
Fingerprints, Stanton Welch
Don Quixote Pas de Deux, Marius Petipa
Paquita, Marius Petipa
Il Distratto, Lew Christensen
Company B, Paul Taylor
Four Temperaments, George Balanchine
Divertimento No. 15, George Balanchine
Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, George Balanchine
Concerto Barocco, George Balanchine
Jewels, George Balanchine
Sync, Nils Christe
Belling the Slayer, Kirk Peterson

Other Collaborations:

Allegro Brilliante, George Balanchine, Metropolitan Ballet Theatre
Odette/Odile, Swan Lake, Southold Dance Theatre
Giselle, Southold Dance Theatre
Celts and Rapture, Lila York, Tulsa Ballet
Carmina Burana, John Butler, Metropolitan Ballet Theatre
Going For Boroque, Val Caniporoli, Tulsa Ballet
Misa Criolla, Val Caniporoli, Tulsa Ballet


I am the owner and Artistic Director of the Academy of Dance Arts in Comstock Park.

Bryce, my husband, and I recently welcomed our daughter into the world. Tevyn Elizabeth, born on June 6, 2013.

I have 2 Iitalian greyhounds.