Winter School

Winter School, 11 – 15 July 2016

West Australian Ballet is proud to present a full week of professional-level training for dance students across WA and Australia.

Held during the second week of the WA winter school holidays, WAB invites dance students aged 13 years and over to join us for a full week of classes in classical technique, pointe, men’s coaching, contemporary technique, and repertoire. Students will also be invited to attend presentations during the week with dancers of West Australian Ballet, experts in nutrition and physio as well as demonstrations on stage makeup. The week will conclude with a day of class viewing for teachers, family and friends.


Download the registration form here.

Email your completed registration form to learning@waballet.com.au.

Registrations close Friday 17 June 2016.


For any queries please read through the information below, or contact Donna Salmin, Winter School Coordinator at learning@waballet.com.au or 9214 0707.

Our elite group of teachers ready to share their knowledge and experience with passionate dance students include:

Juliet Burnett

(former Senior Artist, The Australian Ballet)


David Mack

(Sydney Dance Company)


Jayne Smeulders

(Principal, West Australian Ballet)


Sergey Pevnev

(former Principal, West Australian Ballet)


Donna Salmin

(former professional dancer, Dance Lecturer, WAAPA)




The Winter School will be held over 5 days from Monday 11 July to Friday 15 July. Classes will be conducted from 9.30am to 4.15pm with 1 hour for lunch.


Classes will be divided into Junior Classes aged 13 – 14 years, Senior Classes aged 15 years and over. (Note it will be at the discretion of West Australian Ballet to place applicants according to dance level and not age in some circumstances).


Each participant will take part in the following classes daily:

Classical technique class – 1.5 hours

Pointe work – 1 hour

Men’s coaching – 1.25 hours

Repertoire – 1.25 hours

Contemporary – 1.25 hours



Classical ballet technique – Barre and centre work in an open ballet class structure. This class will be divided into a Junior and a Senior level. Focus for both classes will be on refining and strengthening the ballet technique such a posture, alignment and weight balance while incorporating musicality, presentation and expression. Junior Class: for students who have had at least 2 years of recent experience in ballet and have a sound understanding of ballet technique. Senior Class: for students with a strong knowledge and a minimum of 4 years recent experience in ballet technique.


Pointe work – Classical barre and centre. The class will be specifically designed for pointe work and the pointe technique. This class will be divided into a Junior and Senior level. Emphasis will be placed on strengthening and improving pointe technique through the feet and legs with correct alignment and placement while working with quality of movement and presentation.


Junior Class – designed for students who have had at least 2 years ballet experience and 1 year pointe experience. Senior Class: designed for students who have had considerable experience with ballet technique have worked on pointe for several years.



Men’s coaching – A classical class specifically tailored to male dancers. The class will be taught by former professional male dancers who will coach the students in strengthening technique, alignment and presentation. The class will include working to improve pirouettes, tours, turns in second, jumps, batterie etc.


Contemporary class – The class will be based from the teacher’s previous training techniques learnt including Release, Cunningham, Graham and Norton. Focus will be closer related on the Cunningham methodology to centre work with floor work that follows with emphasis to connect through the centre and the possibilities of movement. Each class will be different including aspects of technical refinement, tumbling, travelling and quite often improvisation or movement exploration, all to a killer soundtrack.


Repertoire – Students will be taught solos and/or group dancers from well-known classical repertoire. They will be coached by a former professional ballet dancer who has previously performed the repertoire in major ballet companies. The students will work gradually over the 5 days to learn the sequences and perfect the technique, while emphasising musicality, quality of movement and presentation. As the repertoire dance is usually based on a ballet with a story line the students will also be taught to understand the interpretation and characterisation of the dance.



  • You can download the registration form here.
  • Registrations must be received in full by close of business on Friday 10 June, 2016.
  • The age of groups are as follows:
    —  Junior Level, 13-14 years (includes students turning 13 in 2016, ie born in 2003).
    —  Senior Level, 15 years and over (includes students turning 15 in 2016, ie: born in 2001).
  • All participants must have had previous ballet experience: Junior Level, minimum 2 years. Senior Level, minimum 4 years.
  • Submission of registration does not guarantee a place in the Winter School. As places are limited early booking is essential, applicants will be processed by date received.
  • Successful registrations will receive confirmation of participation via email.




  • Full rate: $600 (inc. GST) per student.
  • Discounted rate: $450 (inc. GST) per student. This applies for students involved in the West Australian Ballet Masterclass Programme in 2016.
  • Fees must be paid in full upon confirmation of participation. Registrations and fees must be received no later than the 10 June, 2016 – Failure to pay by the due date may result in the applicant’s place being forfeited and offered to another participant.


  • West Australian Ballet is unable to provide a full refund for the Winter School unless the programme is cancelled by the Company.
  • West Australian Ballet will provide an 80% refund of fees if participation is cancelled before 13 June, 2016 and a 50% refund of fees if participation is cancelled before 27 June, 2016.
  • In circumstances where the student is sick or injured, and a medical certificate is received, West Australian Ballet will refund 80% of the fee.
  • Refunds are not available once the Winter School had commenced except for exceptional circumstances where a reduced refund may be given.




  • The Winter School will be held at the West Australian Ballet Centre, 134 Whatley Cres, Maylands WA 6051.
  • Students are to assemble in the foyer of the West Australian Ballet building for daily registration half an hour to the commencement of the first class.
  • Classes will be conducted between 9.30am and 4.15pm (Mon – Fri).
  • There will be a lunch break of 1 hour where students may participate in daily presentations on ballet related topics.
  • Participants will be involved in a viewing day at the end of the week on Friday 15 July. Parents, teachers and friends are welcome to come and spend the day watching the classes being conducted, (further details will be provided once registrations have been confirmed).


  • Final details of the Winter School schedule will be provided to applicants once registrations and payment of fees have been completed.
  • Please note, the West Australian Ballet Centre and all studios and facilities used for the Winter School are strictly non-smoking.
  • No outdoor shoes or socks are to be worn in any of the studios.
  • No food or drink is to be taken into or consumed in the studios with the exception of bottled water. No glass or crockery is to be taken into the studios at any time.
  • West Australian Ballet provides supervision of participants during the Winter School hours only. No student is permitted to leave the building during these times without specific permission from a parent or guardian.
  • The following dress codes will apply to all students:
    — Girls – Leotard of choice, pink ballet tights with ballet flats and pointe shoes for pointe class. Black tights may be worn in contemporary class. Hair must be securely tied back from the face.
    — Boys: Fitted t-shirt and tights or unitard with socks and ballet flats.
  • West Australian Ballet does not provide any participant with individual feedback outside of the class sessions.

Juliet Burnett


Juliet grew up in Sydney, Australia, training in the Cecchetti method with Valerie Jenkins, and later with Christine Keith. She was also fortunate to receive special coaching and mentorship from the late Valrene Tweedie. Juliet was accepted into The Australian Ballet School in 2000, and upon graduation gained a contract at The Australian Ballet, where she started in 2003. Amongst her diverse array of repertoire highlights are the title role in Maina Gielgud’s Giselle, Odette in Graeme Murphy’s Swan Lake, the title role in Auguste Bournonville’s La Sylphide, Juliet in Graeme Murphy’s Romeo and Juliet, Polyhymnia in George Balanchine’s Apollo, Valse, Prelude and Pas de Deux in Mikhail Fokine’s Les Sylphides, Sugar Plum Fairy in Peter Wright’s Nutcracker grand pas de deux, 2nd movement pas de deux in Kenneth MacMillan’s Concerto, and leading roles in Wayne McGregor’s Chroma and Dyad 1929, Jiri Kylian’s Petite Mort, Christopher Wheeldon’s After the Rain, Nicolo Fonte’s The Possibility Space and Stephen Baynes’ Beyond Bach, Molto Vivace, Requiem and At the Edge of Night. In 2008 she was plucked from the rank of Coryphée to create the title role in Matjash Mrozewski’s Semele, and subsequently was named Soloist in 2009, and then Senior Artist in 2011. In mid-2015 she left The Australian Ballet and is now a freelance Guest Artist.


Juliet was named ‘Dancer to Watch’ in Dance Australia’s annual Critics’ Survey in 2008, 2011 and 2012, was nominated for the Telstra Ballet Dancer Award in 2009, and in 2010 was awarded the Khitercs Travelling Scholarship. She has been Ambassador for Bloch, NSW Friends of The Australian Ballet, charity CARE Australia’s Walk In Her Shoes Challenge, and was an active member of the Greening The Australian Ballet committee. In 2015, Juliet realised long-held dreams to dance in her mother’s home country of Indonesia in the 1st Indonesian Ballet Gala, and to teach ballet to children living in poverty in Jakarta, a project she hopes to expand.

Juliet has become highly sought after as a master teacher, having regularly taken classes for the Cecchetti Society in Australia, Sydney Dance Company and many ballet schools, including a master class series in Jakarta, Indonesia. She has also been on the adjudication panel for various Cecchetti awards, and the selection committee for The Valrene Tweedie Scholarship.


Juliet also writes regularly for various dance websites and publications, and her own blog, Dancing in a Turning World.



Jayne Smeulders


jayne-smeuldersBorn in Dampier, Western Australia, Jayne began her ballet training at Jody Marshall Dance Company and continued on to study at the Graduate College of Dance. In 1993 Jayne received a scholarship to finish her studies in Germany at Hamburg Staatsope GmbG Ballettschule.


Before joining West Australian Ballet in 1999, Jayne performed for four years with Nederlands Dans Theater II (NDT). She accompanied NDT on tours to most major theatres all over the world.

During her time at NDT Jayne worked with many internationally acclaimed choreographers such as Jiří Kylián, Hans van Manen, Paul Lightfoot, Nacho Duato, Ohad Naharin, Lionel Hoche, Johan Inge and Gideon Obarzanek. During the past 16 years with West Australian Ballet Jayne has danced many lead roles and worked with choreographers such as Ted Bransen, Natalie Weir, Adrian Burnett, Chrissie Parrott, Simon Dow, Matjash Mrozewski, Askhat Galiamov, Petr Zuska, Kim McCarthy, Ashley Page, Stephen Page, Gary Stewart and Ivan Cavallari. Jayne was nominated for a Helpmann Award in 2003, awarded a WA Dance Award for most outstanding female dancer in 2008, and promoted to Leading Artist in February 2008.


Jayne has danced the roles of Kate in John Cranko’s The Taming of the Shrew with Stuttgart Ballet’s principal artist Filip Barankiewicz, Clara in Ivan Cavallari’s The Nutcracker and the title role in Giselle with guest Principal Artist Ivan Gil-Ortega. Also in 2009, she was awarded the West Australian Citizen of the Year for her services to arts, culture and entertainment. In 2010 Jayne took a short break for the birth of her youngest child Cooper and returned for the company’s May season of to dance the role of Kitri in Lucette Aldous’ Don Quixote and the Lilac Fairy in Marcia Haydées’ The Sleeping Beauty.


Other roles that have been a highlight are Tatiana in John Cranko’s Onegin, Lise in Marc Ribaud La Fille mal gardèe, Myrtha in Scanella/Desasalle’s Giselle, Stephan Page’s Mundajali, Uwe Scholz’s 7th Symphony, Glen Tetley’s Voluntaries and Stairway to Paradise Principle Lady in Balanchine’s Who Cares?


Since returning to Perth, Jayne has choreographed a number of ballets to much acclaim including Sway for Ballet Under the Stars 2001 and multiple pieces for Ballet at the Quarry including When Strangers Meet (2004), Black Attitude (2006) and Tango Etudes (2008). In 2011, Jayne choreographed her first full-length show for West Australian Ballet Cinderella.


Inspired by Balanchine, Jayne created a Grande Tarantella that premiered in West Australian Ballet’s Embraceable You season 2015. Jayne has also created many pieces for the company to perform at Balls and corporate events.


Jayne also spends many hours a week working with students, choreographing and coaching, sharing her love of music and dance at the dance school she grew up at, Jody Marshall Dance Company.


Spare time on the weekends are spent with her husband, Jon, and three children; Lilly, Arabella and Cooper. Jayne enjoys the Australian outdoor lifestyle, water-skiing, fishing and playing by the river or on the beach. Spending time with friends and family, laughing, eating good food and sharing a nice bottle of wine is Jayne’s idea of a perfect evening.

David Mack


david-mackDavid began his training in Coffs Harbour with his twin sister in the early 90’s before moving to Melbourne for full-time studies. Here he trained at the Victorian College of the Arts attaining his VCE and a Bachelor of Arts in dance and in 2001 he was awarded the Norma De Gruchy Award for Most Talented Dancer.


After graduating David worked with West Australian Ballet for two years before moving to London to dance with Rambert Dance Company. Here he featured in soloist roles in works by renowned choreographers such as Rafael Bonachela, Wayne McGregor, Christopher Bruce, Fredrick Ashton, Javier de Frutos and Michael Clark.


David then received an invitation by Javier de Frutos to join Phoenix Dance Theatre where the company toured to the Venice Biennale among other countries and received numerous awards for its repertoire. In 2008 David performed in a work by Dam Van Huynh Collision at The Place Prize in London where they were awarded audience favourite every night.


Before the birth of his first son in 2009, David returned to West Australian Ballet as a soloist under the direction of Ivan Cavallari and later Aurelien Scanella. David worked with many incredible choreographers and danced soloist roles in ballets such as Barry Moreland’s Afternoon of a Faun, Ivan Cavallari’s Pinocchio, John Cranko’s Onegin, Glen Tetley’s Voluntaries and Jiri Kylian’s Un Ballo.


After five years with WA ballet he moved on to Sydney Dance Company where he performed and was involved in the creation of much of the company’s current repertoire. In 2015 David worked with Rafael Bonachela and Visual artist and Composer Mira Calix during the Sydney Festival, performing in her installation Inside There Falls. Later that year David was nominated for an Helpmann Award for Best Male Dancer in William Forsyth’s Quintett and in 2016 was awarded the Green Room Award for Best Male Dancer for his performance in Quintett and Bonachela’s Frame of Mind.


During his career David has taught company classes for Australian Dance Theatre, Sydney Dance Company and Phoenix Dance Theatre. He also led workshops and taught ballet and Contemporary master classes at many dance institutions around Australia and the UK including VCASS, Sydney Dance Company’s Pre-professional Year and Northern School of Contemporary Dance to name a few.



Sergey Pevnev


sergey-pevnevBorn in Saint Petersburg, Russia, Sergey trained at the Vaganova Ballet Academy before dancing with Eifman Contemporary Ballet Theatre, Kirov Ballet and Konstantin Tachkin Saint Petersburg Ballet Theatre. Sergey joined West Australian Ballet as full time member in 2004 after performing a guest role in 2003 and was promoted to Leading Artist in April 2009. Sergey’s favourite roles include Petruchio in John Cranko’s The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo in Youri Vamos’ Romeo and Juliet and Albrecht in Giselle. Sergey has received a Diploma from the Perm International Competition. In both 2009 and 2010 he won Outstanding Performance by a Male Dancer at the WA Dance Awards, firstly for his role as Albrecht in WAB’s Giselle, followed by his performance as Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, choreographed by Yuri Vamos.


Sergey has restaged two full length ballets for Perth City Ballet, Giselle in 2012 and Swan Lake in 2014. Sergey has taught at WAAPA, John Curtin College of the Arts, Perth City Ballet, and Academie Etoiles. After his retirement from West Australian Ballet at the end of 2015, Sergey now runs his own ballet school with his wife and former principal dancer Fiona, named Pevnev Ballet Academy. Sergey is also a member of West Australian Ballet’s Artistic Advisory Panel.



Donna Salmin


donna-salminDonna commenced her fulltime ballet training with the Australian Ballet School. After graduating with a diploma in ballet she began her professional career with the West Australian Ballet under the direction of Barry Moreland. She danced with the company performing solo and principal roles in both ballet and contemporary productions in Perth and throughout Australia.


After 4 years with West Australian Ballet Donna ventured overseas and obtained a contract with the Deutche Oper Berlin, (later the Berlin Ballet) in Germany under the direction firstly with Gertrude Reinholm and then with Peter Shaffaus. With this company she danced a variety of traditional classical ballets such as Swan Lake, Giselle, Les Sylphides, La Sylphides, Romeo and Juliet, Paquita, The Nutcracker, Firebird, Serenade and Symphony in C. The company also toured throughout Europe, the United Kingdom and Russia.


In the middle of 1992 Donna returned to Australia and while starting her family she completed a Bachelor of Business degree at ECU as well as beginning to explore her teaching capabilities as a Ballet Teacher. In 1999 she was offered a casual position teaching ballet at the Academy of Performing Arts and has been teaching there ever since. Presently Donna is a core teacher for the ballet students for the 1st Year Bachelor of Arts Degree and Certificate Program and more recently has extended her teaching of ballet to the musical theatre students at WAAPA and the 4th year Link students within the dance program.