Academy Staff

Meet the Otto M. Budig Academy staff

The Cincinnati Ballet’s Academy Staff works to ensure the professional and artistic growth of Otto M. Budig Academy students.

Sarah Hairston
Academy Director

Born in Charleston, South Carolina, Ms. Hairston began her early ballet training at Charleston Ballet Theatre. At the age of 9, she continued her training in Columbia, South Carolina under the direction of Ann Brodie at the Calvert Brodie School of Dance and later went on to graduate from the North Carolina School of the Arts.

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Zack Grubbs
Academy Principal

Born and raised in Dallas, Texas, Zack Grubbs began his dance training at Tuzer Ballet to supplement his education as a competitive gymnast. He continued his ballet training at the University of Utah under Attila Ficzere and trained with companies across the country including Boston Ballet, where he was a company dancer for four years. Grubbs came to Cincinnati Ballet in 2002, was promoted to Soloist in 2005 and Senior Soloist in 2008.

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Dawn Kelly
Assistant Academy Principal

Born in Boston, Massachusetts, Dawn Kelly received the majority of her training at The Boston Ballet School where she studied under famed teacher and coach Tatiana Legat and her daughter Elena Solovieva.

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Otto M. Budig Academy Staff

Vice President of Academy & Education: Ginger Johnson 513-562-1125
Academy Director: Sarah Hairston 513-562-1119
Academy Principal: Zack Grubbs 513-562-1105
Assistant Academy Principal: Dawn Kelly 513-562-2005
Student Services Manager: Brett Herb 513-562-1120
Academy Registrar: Elizabeth Metz 513-562-1133
Academy Assistant: Kara Jones Louis 513-562-1101

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