Fall 2021
Dear Friends,

As we are about to celebrate Thanksgiving in the United States, we could not be more thankful for the opportunity to finally return to our highly anticipated LIVE international semi-finals in Europe and South America – after a nearly two-year hiatus.

If you follow YAGP on social media, you may have noticed a difference in the naming of some YAGP events. This is because Youth America Grand Prix will now operate in several parts of the world as Youth Grand Prix, with each region adding its country name to the name of the new entity – for instance, Youth Grand Prix Japan.

The updated names reflect the international nature of Youth America Grand Prix – and honor each of the regional locations around the world where YAGP semi-finals and auditions take place. We wanted to emphasize the inclusive, global community that is not only focused on the United States of America, but is truly reflective of the international dance community served by YAGP: the world’s largest global dance family.

Read on for an exclusive backstage pass to our first few semi-final events of the 2021/2022 Season. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Larissa and Gennadi Saveliev
Founders, Youth America Grand Prix
YAGP's 2022 season international Semi-Finals began with the inaugural Youth Grand Prix event in Germany.

Hosted by the state-of-the-art Admiralspalast Theater and Berlin State Ballet School, a longtime YAGP scholarship presenter, hundreds of young dancers from Germany and all over Europe had the opportunity to perform, attend master classes with esteemed directors and artists, and receive scholarships to some of the world’s most prestigious dance academies.
Catarina Bykadorova (PORTUGAL)
Felipe Meijueiro Gozález (SPAIN )
Sofia Naumenko (UKRAINE)
Oliver Matz, Director of Zurich Dance Academy (SWITZERLAND)
Luca Masala, Artistic Director of Princess Grace Academy (MONACO)
Tadeusz Matacz, Artistic Director of John Cranko School of The Stuttgart Ballet (GERMANY)
Enjoy this compilation of highlights from YGP Germany
Berlin Gala
In partnership with Mikhail Kaniskin and Berllett Art Productions, the YGP Germany Semi-Final included a spectacular Gala performance.

The cast featured international ballet stars Maria Khoreva and YAGP Alumnus Kimin Kim of the Mariinsky Theatre, Lucia Lacarra and YAGP Alumnus Matthew Golding, Dorothée Gilbert and Hugo Marchand of the Paris Opera Ballet, and others, along with brilliant rising young talent such as YAGP Alumni Ava Arbuckle (currently a student of John Cranko Schule of Stuttgart Ballet) and Brady Farrar (YAGP 2021 Grand Prix winner).
Maria Khoreva and Kimin Kim
Brady Farrar
Ava Arbuckle
One of the biggest and most exciting annual events in YAGP’s international tour schedule, this year’s Japan Semi-Final was once again brimming with talent. With over 800 participants, a record number of scholarships were presented to the leading dance institutions worldwide. They included the Dutch National Ballet Academy (NETHERLANDS), John Cranko School of Stuttgart Ballet (GERMANY), Princess Grace Academy (MONACO), The Royal Ballet School (UK), and many others.

Like last year, the travel restrictions that prevented YAGP’s esteemed jury panel from attending in person actually worked to the dancers’ benefit, allowing more than 30 judges and scholarship presenters to tune in virtually from 12 countries, 4 continents, and many different time zones.
Ayaka Ito
Akane Settsu
Anne Takahashi
Eito Ishiguro
Mona Flora Kokuryu
For many more videos from Japan, visit the YAGP YouTube channel!
YGP Mexico’s 10th Anniversary was celebrated in the historic town of Orizaba, where a lively festival of dance was held to commemorate the occasion. Several hundred young dancers from Mexico, Cuba, Chile, Panama, and all over South America performed, took master classes, and auditioned for scholarships. The 10th Anniversary Festival was held at the Poliforum Mier y Pesado, known as “The Castle of Orizaba,” and featured performances by the scholarship winners from the past season, YAGP Alumni, and international ballet stars.

Over 100 scholarships were awarded for dancers to attend the leading dance schools in the United States, Europe, and Canada. 

The Gala celebration, with a cast led by New York City Ballet’s Unity Phelan and Amar Ramasar, included a fiery performance by YAGP’s very first Mexican scholarship recipient (in 2003), Anais Bueno – who is now a leading dancer of the Joffrey Ballet. Anais danced a spectacular version of “Bolero,” demonstrating the power of the opportunities YAGP creates for young dancers worldwide. 
Eric Poor, CityDance School & Conservatory (MD)
Arabela Alvarado, Dance Center of San Antonio (TX)
Unity Phelan and Amar Ramasar, Principal Dancers of New York City Ballet, in Christopher Wheeldon's "Bitter Earth"
Anais Bueno and Artists of the Joffrey Ballet in "Bolero" by Yoshi Arai
Nicole Liu, MorningStar Dance Academy (GA)
Sydney Upchurch, Cary Ballet Conservatory (NC)
Lexi McCloud, MOGA Conservatory of Dance (UT)
Michelle and Jermy Avilla, ProVer (MEXICO)
Carola Espadas, ABC Danza (MEXICO)
Cynthia Harvey, Artistic Director of the ABT JKO School (USA)
Ashley Wheater, Artistic Director of the Joffrey Ballet (USA)
Claudio Muñoz, Ballet Master of Houston Ballet II (USA)
Enjoy this stunning and memorable piece choreographed by Julieta Martínez for the opening night ceremony, performed by young Mexican dancers.
After two years, YAGP was thrilled to return to Paris, France, for its international semi-final.

As the first outside organization to be welcomed at the legendary Paris Opera Ballet School in its 300 year-history, we were honored to once again be hosted at the School's state-of-the-art facilities in Nanterre. Young dancers from all over Europe presented thrilling performances onstage, and numerous scholarships were awarded to the world’s leading dance academies. 

The esteemed jury panel included Jason Beechey (Paluca University of Dance Dresden, GERMANY), Paola Cantalupo (Rosella Hightower's National Center of Higher Education in Dance Cannes-Mougins, FRANCE), Jean-Yves Esquerre (European School of Ballet, NETHERLANDS), Élisabeth Platel (Paris Opera Ballet School, FRANCE), and Steffi Scherzer (Zurich Dance Academy, SWITZERLAND).
Élisabeth Platel, Artistic Director of the Paris Opera Ballet School (FRANCE)
Jason Beechey, Rector of Palucca University of Dance Dresden (GERMANY)
Chloé Rigal (FRANCE)
Matthis Laevens (BELGIUM)
Núria Fernandes (PORTUGAL)
United States
This fall, YAGP held its first U.S. Semi-Finals of the season in Philadelphia, Austin, and San Diego. For the first time since March 2020, in addition to their onstage performances, dancers attended live, in-person master classes with the YAGP jury panel. We look forward to continuing our North American audition tour this winter!
Ava Louise Winer, Marat Daukayev School of Ballet (CA)
Maya McDaniels, Mid-Atlantic Center for the Performing Arts (MD)
Zoey Reese, The Dallas Conservatory (TX)
YAGP 2022 Season
Upcoming Auditions

Berlin, GERMANY - Sept 30-Oct 3, 2021
Osaka, JAPAN - Oct 19-24, 2021
China Virtual Competition - November 2021
Orizaba, MEXICO - Oct 28-Nov 1, 2021
Paris, FRANCE - Nov 11-14, 2021
Barcelona, SPAIN - Dec 4-6, 2021
Riccione, ITALY - Dec 16-19, 2021
Seoul, KOREA - January 22, 2022
International Virtual Competition - February 17-20, 2022
*NEW* Kiev, UKRAINE - March 26-28, 2022


Philadelphia, PA (Oct) - Oct 29-31, 2021
Austin, TX - Nov 6-7, 2021
San Diego, CA (Nov) - Nov 12-14, 2021
Seattle, WA - Jan 6-9, 2022
Tampa, FL - Jan 6-9, 2022
Phoenix, AZ - Jan 14-16, 2022
San Francisco, CA (Jan) - Jan 15-17, 2022
Los Angeles, CA (Jan) - Jan 20-23, 2022
Pittsburgh, PA - Jan 20-23, 2022
Atlanta, GA - Jan 27-30, 2022
Dallas, TX - Jan 27-30, 2022
Las Vegas, NV - Jan 27-30, 2022
Los Angeles, CA (Feb) - Feb 4-6, 2022
Salt Lake City, UT - Feb 4-6, 2022
Chicago, IL (Feb) - Feb 10-13, 2022
Boston (Worcester), MA - Feb 10-13, 2022
New York, NY - Feb 13-15, 2022
Winston-Salem, NC - Feb 17-20, 2022
San Francisco, CA (Feb) - Feb 18-20, 2022
San Diego, CA (Feb) - Feb 24-27, 2022
Kansas City, MO - Feb 25-27, 2022
Denver, CO - Feb 25-27, 2022
Philadelphia, PA (Mar) - Mar 4-6, 2022
Indianapolis, IN - Mar 10-13, 2022
Houston, TX - Mar 10-13, 2022
Orlando, FL - Mar 10-13, 2022
Chicago, IL (Mar) - Mar 17-20, 2022
Toronto, CANADA - Mar 18-20, 2022
San Diego, CA (Mar) - Mar 20-22, 2022


Tampa, FL - April 13-20, 2022
From our sponsors
Dance has the power to inspire, uplift and transform – but when it comes to young minds, its power to elevate goes far beyond the stage. 

Sharing the stage at YAGP with fellow dancers from around the globe creates an environment where diversity and inclusion are not just aspirational goals, but a shared reality – helping students become not only better artists, but better global citizens. 

Photography Credits: James Kelly, Alfredo Morán, Carlos Quezada, Staff TES, Star Action Shots, April Wexelman