In the tradition of Step Up we offer Intermediate selections of music for ballet instruction. Firmare builds on foundatioins established through our latest series which includes Poisitio, Firmare, volatus with a carefully chosen musical collection that enhances the application of strength and control for better expression of the form. These exquisite pieces selected and expertly performed by pianist Tatyana Featherman inspire a highter level of accomplishment for the develpoing dancer.
Whitefeather Productions believes that there is a demand for ballet class music designed specifically for the needs of beginning, intermediate, advanced and pre-professional levels of training, and that each level of training requires a different musical emphasis. Founders Margarita White, Tatyana Featherman and Melinda Pendleton also feel that the process of early ballet training should include music of artistic merit, and as students progress onto more advanced levels of training their musical accompaniment should aid that process by growing with them. This high standard is the philosophy that underlies each Whitefeather product.
Tatyana Featherman - Pianist
Tatyana Featherman was born in the former Soviet Union, where she received her elementary music education in the Ukrainian city of Lvov. Upon completing her education in Odessa, Tatyana was engaged as an accompanist with Vodnic, a prestigious rhythmic gymnastic school. In 1982, Tatyana immigrated to the United States where she began working as an accompanist for Margarita and John White, directors of the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet. During the ensuing years, Tatyana recorded three albums for ballet classes - \"Spirit of Movement,\" \"Harmony in Motion\" and \"Fire Within.\" While studying ballet at the academy, she attended John White\'s teacher\'s seminar, and began teaching ballet in addition to her work as accompanist.
Margarita White, born Margarita de Saá in Havana, Cuba, studied ballet with Fernando and Alicia Alonso. Margarita joined the newly formed Ballet Nacional de Cuba rising through the ranks from corps de ballet to principal dancer. In addition to her dancing responsibilities, she learned the Vaganova teaching method from Soviet ballet masters, and taught in the new state school, Cubanacan. Margarita left Cuba with her husband, John White. In 1969, they were invited to join the Pennsylvania Ballet company where they remained until 1974, when they founded their own school, the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet in Narberth, Pennsylvania. Margarita is considered an authority in the world of ballet. The Academy trains over 300 students each year, and many graduates are dancing professionally in companies around the world.
Melinda Pendleton began her ballet training at the age of 8, at the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet. In 1984, she won the highest award in The Carey Rose Winski Memorial ballet competition. Two years later she competed at the international competition in Jackson, Mississippi. Melinda went on to perform in France with the Ballet du Nancy, and then returned to the United States to perform with Dance South, in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1991, after spending a year in Atami, Japan, performing with Minnie Madden Productions, she began her teaching career at the Pennsylvania Academy of Ballet under the direction of her parents Margarita and John White. Melinda has since joined her parents as co-director of the Academy