(Ballet 4/5 Instructor) Nicole Townsend was born in San Jose, California. She began dancing at age 2 and at an early age she realized that her true love was ballet. She began her formal ballet training at Ballet San Jose at age 7 under the direction of Lise la Cour. At age 15, she went on to extend her training for the next three and a half years at City Ballet School in San Francisco. There she danced many roles ranging from Le Corsaire Pas de trois to Spanish, Arabian and Mirliton leads in the Nutcracker as well as Don Quixote and Sleeping Beauty. She moved away from home at age 18 to train with Marat Daukayev in Los Angeles and performed Paquita duets, variation and grand pas corps. Ms.Townsend was then awarded a scholarship to the Pacific Northwest Ballet (PNB) 2019 summer intensive and was subsequently accepted into their Professional Division Program. While at Pacific Northwest Ballet she learned many Balanchine variations such as “Divertimento .15” and “Who Cares?” She also performed “the Nutcracker” with the Company and performed the roles of Spanish, Chinese, Grandma, Snow and Flowers. After Nicole’s first year as a Professional Division student she was awarded a full scholarship to Paris Opera Ballet 2020 summer intensive through PNB and then was later a recipient of the American Friends of Paris Opera Ballet Scholarship Award in 2020. During the Covid quarantine, Nicole completed her second year with PNB over Zoom and then was accepted into Kansas City Ballet Second Company (KCBII) where she performed in Devon Carney’s “The Nutcracker,” Michael Pink’s “Dracula” and Septime Webre’s “Wizard of Oz.” She also performed numerous second company presentations and danced “Raymonda,” “Serenade” and Spanish Lead from the Nutcracker. After her time with Kansas City Ballet she was accepted to the Dutch National Summer Program in Amsterdam where she learned the Wedding Pas from Ernst Meisner and performed other pieces from “Sleeping Beauty.”. Currently, Nicole is continuing her ballet career as a member of Oakland Ballet Company and recently performed as the Snow Queen in Alameda Civic Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker.