Jessica Lawrence holds a master’s degree (MA) in Dance Education from New York University and a bachelor’s degree (BA) in Dance Performance from Saint Mary’s College of California. She received her primary training from Sunny Mitchell, Ron Cunningham and Carinne Binda while on full merit scholarship at The Sacramento Ballet. As a student she placed in the Finals of the Youth America Grand Prix competition and was awarded numerous scholarships to train at The San Francisco Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, The Rock School, Washington Ballet, and Exploring Ballet with Suzanne Farrell. She joined The Sacramento Ballet as a professional at age fifteen, and The Suzanne Farrell Ballet at age seventeen. In 2014 she was offered a guest soloist contract with Medhi Bahiri and Judith Fugate’s freelance company, Ballet NY, while taking an open ballet class in New York City. Some of Jessica’s performing highlights included international tours to Muscat, Oman and Sofia, Bulgaria; performing at The Joyce Theater in NYC, The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, and Zellerbach Hall at Cal Berkeley. She has danced principal, soloist and corps de ballet roles in over twenty Balanchine ballets, several ballets by Jerome Robbins and Maurice Bejart, as well as the classics such as Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, and The Nutcracker.
Jessica is certified in the American Ballet Theatre’s National Training Curriculum™, and is one of the first recipients of the School of American Ballet’s (official school of the New York City Ballet) National Visiting Fellowship. As an educator, Jessica aims to promote diversity in the field of ballet so that all students have the opportunity to embody positive identity formation through the avenue of dance. She strives to create a learning environment where students feel comfortable being inquisitive and creative; a place where students know they are encouraged to explore all the possibilities that dance has to offer. Jessica is honored to be able to share her passion of ballet and learning with the students of NCDC!