Former Toledo Ballet Dancer Joins New York City Ballet

Published Thursday, February 20, 2020 9:00 am

The Toledo Ballet announced today that one of its former students Quinn Starner has accepted an apprenticeship with New York City Ballet beginning summer of 2020.

“I always knew I wanted to be a professional dancer,” says Quinn. “It’s been a dream of mine since I was twelve years old to dance at New York City Ballet, so when I was offered my apprenticeship, it was the best day of my life! I am so excited to start this new journey and can’t wait to be on stage in New York City. I am so thankful for this amazing opportunity.”

Quinn, now seventeen, began studying dance when she was two and a half years old at Bedford Dance Academy in Bedford, Michigan. At the age of eight, Quinn joined Viva Dance Company in Monroe, Michigan and continued her studies at Toledo Ballet where she won two Youth American Grand Prix’s and received numerous awards. It wasn’t long after that Quinn became a full-time ballet student at Indiana Ballet Conservatory in Indianapolis and later the School of American Ballet in New York City.

“My early training at Toledo Ballet has helped shape me into the dancer I am today,” says Quinn. “The classroom training, many privates, countless hours of preparation for ballet competitions, and the many performances have all provided me the experience and knowledge to pursue a career in dance. I am thankful for all of my teachers who have guided me on and off the stage.”

Through the years, Quinn has performed in numerous roles and productions of Tchaikovsky’s famous Nutcracker, including Prologue, White Mouse, Ginger Snap, Candy Cane, Party Girl, Snow, Spanish, Chinese, and Dew Drop Princess. She’s performed the role of Clara in Toledo Ballet’s annual production of The Nutcracker and Sugar Plum Fairy with the Indiana Ballet Conservatory for two consecutive years alongside Boston Principal Dancer Lasha Khozashvili.

Quinn has been the recipient of numerous awards throughout her dance career, including Gold Medal in the American Dance Competition (ADC)/International Ballet Competition (IDC) (2018), ADC/IBC Grand Prix Award Winner (2017), Legacy Award and Gold Medalist at the Universal Ballet Competition (2017-2018), First Place Contemporary and Second Place Classical at the Youth American Grand Prix Ballet Competition (YAGP) (2016-2018), YAGP Pas de Duex Solo Finalist (2017-2018), and she was the Gold Medalist in the World Ballet Arts Competition Finals in Canada (2016-2017).

“Quinn is one of the hardest working students I’ve ever taught,” says Lisa Mayer-Lang, Artistic Director for Toledo Ballet. “I am honored to have been part of her journey and know she is bound for greatness. We are so proud of her and the example she sets for our young students. The sky is the limit and I encourage all of our dancers to work hard and dream big.”

For more information, please contact Felecia Kanney, Director of Marketing for the Toledo Ballet at


Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony are the region’s oldest performing arts institutions. Toledo Ballet, celebrating its 80th year of dance instruction, is recognized as one of America’s finest pre-professional dance programs. The Toledo Symphony, celebrating its 76th season, is recognized as one of the finest regional orchestras in the country, employing 65 professional musicians, as well as numerous extra players annually as repertoire demands.

On January 1, 2019, the Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony officially merged to form the Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts (TAPA), a new non-profit organization dedicated to providing exceptional live music and dance performances and education for the region.

Combined, the Toledo Ballet and Toledo Symphony reach more than 260,000 individuals annually through performances and education programs. The series concerts (Masterworks, Pops, Dance, Chamber, Mozart in the Afternoon, and Family Series) are the critical underpinning of TAPA’s artistic mission and regularly draw people from 135 zip codes. Education programs, student performances and community concerts are held in schools, neighborhood churches, performing arts centers and community facilities throughout the region; many are offered at no charge or provided at a reduced fee to help expand participation. For more information, please visit


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