Nicole Ferreira-Dill began ballet training at age 5, qualifying in the Cecchetti Method with Joy Cooper and the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus with Michelle Naudé and winning the RAD Advanced 2 Bursary in 2006.
In 2008 she was awarded the RAD Solo Seal with Natasha Ireland as her coach. At Pro Arte Alphen Park School she also trained in Jazz, Spanish and Contemporary Dance. During 2004 and 2005 she participated in the Prix de Lausanne, Switzerland, and attended the Bartholin Dance Workshop in Copenhagen. She completed her Graduate year at South African Ballet Theatre (now Joburg Ballet) in 2007 and joined the company in 2008. She attained the rank of Principal Dancer in 2018.
In 2014 she danced as a guest artist with the Tivoli Ballet Theatre in Copenhagen. She was appointed a teacher for the Val Whyte Bursary in 2016. With Joburg Ballet, she has toured to Oman and represented South Africa at the SA National Day 2019 in Hong Kong.
Her repertoire includes principal and soloist roles in the Veronica Paeper and Iain MacDonald productions of Cinderella and in Coppélia, Carmen, Maina Gielgud’s production of The Sleeping Beauty, Giselle, Don Quixote, The Nutcracker, La Bayadère, Swan Lake, Le Corsaire and many roles in shorter ballets.
In 2016 she danced the title role in Iain MacDonald’s Cinderella for the first time, with guest artist Owen Thorne as the Prince. In 2017 she danced the title role in MacDonald’s new production of Snow White.
Shannon Glover was born in Durban and began dance training in Johannesburg at age four. She later attended the National School of the Arts, Johannesburg, and was winner of the SA Adeline Genée Silver Trophy Competition, subsequently representing SA at the international Genée Competition in the UK.
In 2004 she was accepted for South African Ballet Theatre’s Graduate Programme and was subsequently taken into the company. Her versatility and technical abilities lead her to principal roles and in 2011, at her début performance as Princess Aurora in The Sleeping Beauty, she was promoted to Principal Dancer. Her repertoire includes principal roles in The Sleeping Beauty, La Traviata, Cinderella (Veronica Paeper and Iain MacDonald versions), Coppélia, Carmen, Le Corsaire, The Nutcracker, Don Quixote, La Bayadère, The Nutcracker Re-Imagined, Swan Lake, Giselle and Romeo and Juliet.
She has choreographed a number of works for the company and in 2013 danced in the International Ballet Gala in Honour of Alicia Alonso in Johannesburg.
She danced the title roles in Iain MacDonald’s Snow White in 2017 and Veronica Paeper’s Carmen in 2018. She represented SA at the BRICS summit in China, performing the pas de deux from Romeo and Juliet.
In 2019 she danced the Queen in Snow White at Montecasino and attended a choreographic residency at the Centre for Ballet and the Arts at New York University. On her return she was commissioned to choreograph a new work for Joburg Ballet, I Think, Therefore I Am, which had its premiere in the company’s season of Unbound at Joburg Theatre.
Claudia Monja was born in Cuba. She graduated at the National Ballet School of Cuba in 2005 where her teachers included Moraima Martinez, Esther Garcia, Ramona de Saá and Ana Julia Bermūdez. That same year she joined Cuba’s Ballet de Camagüey, being promoted to soloist in 2009 and touring with the company to Colombia, Italy and Ecuador.
She has been a dancer with Joburg Ballet since 2013, making her début with the company in the title role in Giselle. Since then her repertoire has expanded to include leading roles in ballets such as The Nutcracker, Le Corsaire, La Bayadère, Cinderella, Don Quixote, Coppélia, Romeo and Juliet, Big City, Big Dreams, La Traviata, The Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Carmen and roles in many one-act works and divertissements.
In 2015 she won the Madge Cade Award for services to Joburg Ballet and toured with Joburg Ballet to China. In April 2018 she was promoted to Principal Dancer. As the first black ballerina in SA to achieve the rank of Principal Dancer, Claudia Monja occupies an important role in SA performing arts.
In addition to her stage career, Claudia Monja has worked with the Joburg Ballet School (JBS) in various capacities including assisting in training JBS teachers in the Cuban Ballet Methodology through a series of workshops from 2015 to 2017, serving as an examiner for the school’s internal examinations and sharing the stage with students in Joburg Ballet’s productions of The Nutcracker, Snow White, Carmen and Cinderella.
Together with fellow dancer Keke Chele she choreographed Havana, based on a popular Cuban salsa dance and performed by Joburg Ballet.