Ekaterina & Artem Yachmennikoff
Owners, Founders and Artistic Directors of We Dance Academies have already demonstrated solid, dependable, and consistent hard work which has been beneficial to our local residents.
2017 - opened We Dance Academy, Melbourne, FL*
(2017-2021 operated as Melbourne City Dance Center).
2018 - founded Melbourne City Ballet Theatre, a 501c3 not-for-profit year-round ballet company.
2021 - rebranded the studio, DBA We Dance Academies
2021 - opened a second location of We Dance Academies, Viera, FL
We Dance Academies have over 200 students of ages 3-18 years old.
We Dance Academies provide serious young dancers who wish to further their training additional performance, competition and rehearsal opportunities. These additional opportunities prepare the students to consider the choice of continuing with a career as a professional dancer, as well as providing them confidence, discipline and an appreciation of the arts that will serve them well in all aspects of their lives.
Our students qualify for scholarships for world wide prestigious intensive ballet programs, such as Bolshoi Ballet Intensive, Royal Ballet Theatre Intensive, San Francisco Intensive, American Ballet Theatre Intensive, Pacific North Ballet Intensive and Boston Ballet Intensive. Our academies have already produced dancers who have joined professional ballet companies, such as Washington Ballet, Orlando Ballet & Sarasota Ballet, and multiple ballroom champions spreading the word of Brevard's rich cultural opportunities.
We Dance Academies present annual showcases, such as the Sleeping Beauty Ball, Nutcracker Ball, La La Land, Million Dreams Gala featuring world class dancers, lavish sets & costumes, and exciting choreography. Our Annual Showcase demonstrates WDA's remarkable accomplishments throughout the year and gives audiences the rare opportunity to experience a performance by the next generation of ballet professionals. Students from all levels of the school perform repertory pieces and ballets specially created for them to showcase their amazing talent and training. We Dance students have the opportunity to compete in various ballet and dance competitions. Our ballet and ballroom students compete in annual ballet competitions such as: YOUTH AMERICA GRAND PRIX, Universal Ballet Competition, Valentina Kozlova International Ballet Competition (VKIBC), The World Ballet Competition, Miami Vibe Dancesport Competition, Millenium Dancesport Championships, Atlanta Dancsport Championships, Platinum Classic Dancesport Competition and many others. We Dance Academies have been selected to partner with the American Muscle Car Museum to promote Ballet at the museum’s Special Charity Event Series, such as Veterans and Scouts of America. We Dance Academies are staffed by professional international ballet dancers and dance instructors. We continuously employ highly qualified and professional international ballet dancers and dance instructors, qualified through their achievements and reputations to represent our academy, in order to accommodate our growing number of students. For example, throughout the years, among our teachers we have had 3-time World Ballroom Champion teaching the competitive ballroom program, European and World Ballroom and Latin Championships finalist, Assistant of the Ballroom Director, Bolshoi Theatre Principal Dancer, leading ballerina of Cirque Du Soleil, Classical Ballet consultant, So You Think You Can Dance finalist, Contemporary specialist, New York City Ballet dancer, Balanchine consultant. We select very carefully who we work with and doing our best in offering the opportunity for our students to learn from the world class professionals.
We Dance Owners are also the Founders and Artistic Directors of the Melbourne City Ballet Theatre (MCBT), a 501c3 not-for-profit organization who's mission is:
Entertainment: through year round world class ballet productions with ballet stars from around the world, local artists from all area ballet schools and local musicians engaging the entire community participants and audience members;
Education: offering a variety of dance forms and levels of instruction form hobby to professional/pre professional;
Community Outreach through programs and educational activities for those with limited access to the dance arts including senior centers and title one schools, schools catering to students with special needs, festivals and other community events.
The Melbourne City Ballet Theatre's commitment to dance goes even further, MCBT has produced two major productions The Sleeping Beauty (2018) and Swan Lake (2019) at the Maxwell C King Center for the Performing Arts in collaboration with the National Ballet of Odessa, Ukraine, which included 55 professional dancers from Ukraine, over 100 dancers from our community and 50 musicians from the Satellite Symphony Orchestra. These ballet productions bring our goal of revolutionizing the local dance scene to an entirely new level: it helps our new generation of dancers grow by performing side with established stars.
MCBT productions have received outstanding reviews described as “the highest quality” “the likes of which are seen in major cities around the world.” We have entertained over 4,500 people at the King Center for the Performing Arts alone. Both productions were groundbreaking for Brevard with many historical firsts and included some of the youngest dancers ever to have graced a professional stage seamlessly integrating with the corps de ballet. MCBT has received grant funding from the Brevard Cultural Alliance, The Space Coast Board of Tourism and from the state Florida Division of Cultural Affairs for our powerful vision for dance in Brevard. MCBT is hosting a Scholarship Event in June 2021 and will be offering 5 Ballet Scholarships for youth in need. Our organization also donates tickets annually to Brevard Family Partnership, Scott Center of Autism, Promise of Brevard, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, the entire dance team at Stone Middle school and many other organizations that have less access to the dance arts. MCBT company performs regularly at senior centers in the area since our inception. MCBT has done school outreach having developed a student led curriculum for grades K - 6. MCBT has performed at area festivals and has continued its dedicated efforts for the community through these trying times of Covid. We are putting Brevard County on the national and international dance map. We plan to have a year-round company to support Brevard's growing population and need for local year-round productions.
Artem Yachmennikoff, former professional ballet dancer. Graduated from the Vaganova Ballet Academy. He was the first soloist with the world famous Bolshoi Theater; a soloist at The Mariinsky Theater; and a principal dancer at the Dutch National Ballet, which is one of the most prestigious European theaters. He was also a principal dancer at San Francisco Ballet, one of the largest and oldest professional ballet companies in the United States. During his artistic career, he has danced all the leading roles in works by many of the twentieth century's master choreographers including George Balanchine, Natalia Makarova, Peter Wright, Hans van Manen, Alexei Ratmansky, Rudi van Dantzig, John Neumeier, William Forsythe, Francesco Ventriglia, Patrick de Bana, Aidar Akhmetov, Helgi Tomasson, Ted Brandsen and more. He partnered with the stars of ballet world including Uliana Lopatkina, Svetlana Zakharova, Anna Tsygankova, Maria Alexandrova, Igone de Jongh, Sofiane Sylve, Tan Yuanyuan, Larisa Leznina, Ilze Liepa, Ylia Makhalina and more. Yachmennikoff’s repertoire includes numerous main roles in productions of “La Bayadere”, “La Sylphide”, “Swan Lake”, “The Sleeping Beauty”, “Giselle”, “Romeo & Juliet“, “Coppelia”, “Chopiniana”, “Le Corsaire”, “Don Quixote”, “Symphony in C”, “Serenade“, “Steptext “, “Sarcasmen”, “Adagio Hammerklavier”, “Black Cake”, “Kammerballett”, “Russian Seasons”, “The Flames of Paris”, “Scheherazade”, “The Firebird”, “Cleopatra”, “Ghost Ball”, “Fourteenth”, “The Nutcracker”. He performed on the most prestigious ballet stages in the world such as Covent Garden in London, Grand Opera in Paris, Metropolitan Opera in New-York, The London Coliseum Theater, and Champs-Elysees Theater in Paris. For his artistic accomplishments, he was invited as the guest of honor to attend the official ceremony with the Queen of Netherlands, Beatrix. World famous ballerina, Natalia Makarova, a true legend of the ballet world, selected Artem for the role of Solor and personally rehearsed with him for the world renown premiere of La Bayadere at Net National Ballet. Pierr Cardin, an italian-born, French top fashion designer has created all of Artem’s costumes for the world tour with the Russian Seasons produced by another legendary ballet artist, Andris Liepa. Audiences of London, Paris, Moscow, Tokyo and other capitals of the world enjoyed the privilege of admiring this production. Artem has also been invited to perform as guest star at the Italian franchise of Dancing With The Stars.
Ekaterina, former professional Latin American & Standard dancer. Graduated from the University of Culture in promotion and production of cultural public programs. She is the great-grand daughter of the world-famous ballerina, Agrippina Vaganova, who created the well-known method of professional training for ballet dancers all around the world. Ekaterina herself is a three-time World Champion ballroom dancer, WDC European champion, multiple champion of Italy, Ukraine and Spain. She won her first World Cup at the Under 21 age category in Los Angeles, USA in 2006. She was the winner of the prestigious Festival of Dance in Cervia, Italy; the Imperial Dance Championship; and Universal Dance Competition in London, England. She has been a pro teacher on Dancing With The Stars in Italy for five seasons and choreographer on So You Think You Can Dance. She brings the highest level of ballroom experience to the Space Coast.