Alaska Ballet is an exceptional school for any ballet dancer serious about becoming a professional dancer. Michelangelo Canale saw me in my first ballet class at age 13 and invited me to join the Program Level classes to start studying more intensely. Because of his guidance, I had the tools to lead me to an Apprenticeship with the Richmond Ballet. I was always given plenty of advice and guidance which I still use to this day, that allowed me to “make it” having had a late start. I am forever grateful to the wonderful teaching staff lead by Michelangelo for all the knowledge and instruction they’ve given me. I am where I am today because of the education that I received at his incredible Academy.
My name is Larissa Saveliev and I am the founder and artistic director of Youth America Grand Prix, the world’s largest student ballet scholarship competition. We’ve worked with Mr. Canale for several years, as he entered many of his students into the competition. In our opinion, he is an extremely qualified teacher, and his training is in line with global standards. His students always exhibited excellent technique and artistry, and many of them have gone on to win scholarships in our competition and lead successful careers in dance, joining professional companies around the globe. Mr. Canale himself has won several awards from our organization for the work he’s done with students as a teacher and choreographer.
Founder and Artistic Director
Youth America Grand Prix
In my time in Anchorage, I was very impressed by the overall professionalism of Michelangelo’s students and the staff. The respect and openness that the students showed me were beyond reproach. They paid attention to their instructors as well as helping their peers. Michelangelo and his instructors are so well prepared. The classes started on time and were appropriate to the abilities of the dancers to provide them with strength and proper technique. I witnessed a nurturing environment that is rarely seen in this day and age. I felt that each student was looked at as an individual with needs that were seen, assessed, and nurtured. Anchorage is so lucky to have an institution under Michelangelo’s direction and with his direction, his students will continue to create beautiful and respectful artists and people.
Professional Principal Dancer
Michelangelo Canale not only prepared me to be a professional classical ballet dancer but a disciplined and self motivated person. He provides his students with the rigorous training necessary for a career in dance while also providing wonderful performance opportunities to instill the love of dance. I cannot thank Michelangelo enough for all the years of training and endless support. I look forward to teaching and finding ways to give back to the ballet world in the future.
The values and abilities I gained from studying with Michelangelo Canale have propelled my dancing career far beyond my own expectations. His talented staff also helped me become the best dancer that I could be. Learning to dance in that atmosphere of professionalism and excellence gave me the tools not only to succeed in my professional dancing career, but also in every aspect of my life. Michelangelo helped foster my love for dance and, in my professional opinion, his school is the best starting block to learn, test yourself, and excel in the art of dance.
The World Irish Dance Champion
Professional dancer with Riverdance
I am truly grateful to have trained with Michelangelo. The knowledge, skills, professionalism, and technique I gained allowed me to standout among some of the best dancers in the world. My professional career has been a success thanks to the rigorous discipline of Michelangelo. Now as a teacher and artistic director of my own company in NYC, I’m able to instill in my students and artists the same foundational principles I learned from Michelangelo.
Dancer, Teacher, Choreographer
Co-Artistic Director of Ballet Noir
I feel so lucky to have started my ballet training with Michelangelo Canale. Although I started at a late age, I was never made felt as though I was behind and was always encouraged to keep going. Michelangelo has such a passion and talent for teaching and it shows in all the dancers he produces. His high standards of training and discipline meet those of the best schools around the world. The knowledge he gave me opened so many doors for me and I have Michelangelo and Farah to thank for the dancer that I have become.
Graduate Royal Ballet School, London UK
In 2009, after graduating under Michelangelo Canale, I attended the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre. I then became a member of the American Ballet Theatre’s Studio Company in New York City. In 2011, I was asked to apprentice with American Ballet Theatre and soon was offered a corps contract. I now hold a corps de ballet position with American Ballet Theatre. I would like to give special thanks to Michelangelo and Farah Canale for their outstanding training and helping me get to where I am today.
American Ballet Theatre
My years with Maestro Michelangelo Canale taught me many valuable life skills about hard work, achieving what you think are impossible goals, and staying focused. After going on to apprentice with Ballet Met Ohio, I realized that the technique and level of professionalism I learned from Michelangelo matched the level expected from me as a dancer with other professionals. I always felt they both worked very hard on my behalf and held a high standard for every student. I am grateful to have developed my curiosity and love for working with the body by studying with Michelangelo.
Training Director at Studio One Pilates
Certified Advanced Rolfer®
The Garold Gardner Scholarship Foundation has supported Michelangelo Canale in his efforts to train and provide growth opportunities for students wishing to enter into the world of professional dance. In fact, the GGSF has endowed scholastic funds numerous times to Mr. Canale’s students which is a testament to his abilities to assert his skills as a teacher, administrator, professional, and artistic director. In dance education, all instructors are required to vigorously train potential dancers in order to best bring them up to speed provide necessary skill setsand assist them to an upper tier of quality performance and professionalism. Succeeding in the dance world is hard even for the strongest of personalities. The success of Michelangelo Canale’s students speaks for itself.
Allen Merritt on behalf of Garold Gardner
Garold Gardner Scholarship Foundation
I met Michelangelo Canale a few months after I moved to Anchorage in September of 2002 to work at Alaska Dance Theatre. He was director of the “other” ballet school in Anchorage, and our paths crossed in the civil function of raising awareness of performing arts in Anchorage. Michelangelo has been tireless in his effort to bring the highest level of ballet performance to Alaskan audiences. Michelangelo sets a very high standard of classical ballet instruction. While in direct competition with our studio, Michelangelo was respectful and cooperative in our occasional collaborations. When I left Alaska Dance Theatre in 2009, Michelangelo insisted that his company produce the celebration for Alice Bassler Sullivan that I directed, and offered me as much teaching work as I wanted while I searched other opportunities. I worked closely with Michelangelo Canale for several seasons returning to Anchorage to act as Ballet Master and Choreographer for The Nutcracker and various Spring Galas erstwhile directing Fidalgo DanceWorks in Anacortes, Washington. I know Michelangelo to be an exigent and demanding director whose primary focus is the development of his students to be not only excellent dancers, but responsible people and good and helpful citizens as well. The excellence of his training is indisputable. The number of dancers from his tutelage that are making a living dancing throughout the world is a testament to this.
The North Star Ballet
Mr. Michelangelo is a shining star. His training is the best in the state. His Academy embraces Ballet in its art form; excellence is forefront and he prepares his students for success. Mr. Michelangelo encouraged me to audition for Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet School and recommended a grant from the Alaska State Council on the Arts for financial aid and helped me apply. I was fortunate to receive a grant from the Alaska State of Council of Arts, along with his support. Performing and teaching for Mr. Michelangelo was always a privilege and I would highly recommend to all aspiring Alaska dancers looking to make it in the dance world to study with Michelangelo.
“I met Michelangelo at a conference centered around the Vaganova technique. I knew then that we were going to be comrades. After our meeting, he would bring me to Anchorage, Alaska to work with his students. I was so impressed by how hard they worked for him, and for me. The discipline and professionalism of such young dancers was exemplary. I had the opportunity to see his training style, firsthand which was filled with rigor and joy. Being a part of his time at Anchorage ballet was a fulfilling experience that I will never forget from teaching the choreography from my years with Cats to sitting in on one of his private coaching sessions with students who were preparing for the Youth America Grand Prix. I knew I was in a place of excellence.”
General M. Hambrick
Professor, University of West Virginia
From the moment I met Michelangelo and his team, I was welcomed with enthusiasm and kindness. While taking his classes, I’m always impressed with his dancers' ability to quickly learn advanced combinations and then execute them with strength and passion. Instilling focus and hard work into his students, Michelangelo stands out as a coach that will get the best out of each and every one of his students. I am grateful for the opportunities and coaching I’ve received from Michelangelo and his associates.
Soloist Dancer, Teacher