Victoria Lyras
Group: Indianapolis School of Ballet

A native of Athens, Greece, Ms. Lyras received her training at the School of American Ballet in New York City under the guidance of Alexandra Danilova, Felia Doubrovska, Helene Dudin, Suki Schorer, Muriel Stuart, Antonina Tumkovsky and Stanley Williams. While studying at the School of American Ballet, Ms. Lyras performed children's roles with the New York City Ballet under the direction of George Balanchine. Upon her graduation from the School, Mr. Balanchine and Barbara Weisberger, Founder and Artistic Director of Philadelphia’s Pennsylvania Ballet, selected her for that company where she rose through the ranks to soloist and principal dancer.

During her association with the Pennsylvania Ballet, Ms. Lyras danced principal roles in the Balanchine repertoire: Stars and Stripes, Donizetti Variations, Divertimento No. 15, Western Symphony, Who Cares?, and Tarantella, and Benjamin Harkarvy's Time Passed Summer, Madrigalesco and Grand Pas Espagnol, John Butler's Carmina Burana, The Woman In His Past in Antony Tudor's Jardin Aux Lilas, Emilia in Jose Limon's The Moor's Pavane, Paul Taylor's Arden Court, Swanhilda in Coppelia and created roles in Peter Anastos' Domino, Lynne Taylor-Corbett's Ordinary Rhythms, and Dane LaFontsee's Underlight. Ms. Lyras also danced the roles of Snow Queen and Dew Drop in the Pennsylvania Ballet's production of The Nutcracker.

In 1984 Ms. Lyras left the Pennsylvania Ballet to pursue a career as a freelance guest artist and master teacher. She has toured and performed with Edward Villella and Dancers, the Oklahoma City Ballet (dancing Odette in Balanchine's Swan Lake Act II, partnered by Edward Villella), the Eglevsky Ballet (dancing Sugar Plum Fairy in The Nutcracker and the principal ballerina roles in Balanchine's Allegro Brillante and Les Sylphides, and the Harrisburg Ballet (dancing Balanchine's Pas de Dix and Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux, partnered by Scott Jovovich). Ms. Lyras appeared in the International Ballet Celebration gala performance in Baton Rouge, Louisiana where she danced David McNaughton's Gypsy and Balanchine's Stars and Stripes, partnered by Mr. McNaughton.

During the 1991-92 season Ms. Lyras appeared as a guest artist with the Indianapolis Ballet Theatre in a special program which included Jeffrey Gribler of the Pennsylvania Ballet, and Panayis Lyras, Ms. Lyras' brother and internationally-renowned concert pianist. Ms. Lyras and Mr. Gribler danced George Balanchine's Sonatine (staged and coached by Violette Verdy). Ms. Lyras has also appeared as a guest artist with many other regional ballet companies in the United States including Ballet Portland's production of The Nutcracker. Ms. Lyras danced with American Repertory Ballet as a principal dancer where she expanded her repertoire to include the role of Juliet in Septime Webre's Romeo and Juliet. Ms. Lyras was a principal dancer with American Repertory Ballet for the 1994-95 season.

Ms. Lyras has participated as a dancer in the Carlisle Project Choreography Workshops and also appeared in the Carlisle Project showcase performances in Philadelphia and Aspen, Colorado. As a teacher, she has taught master classes for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Ballet, the Pennsylvania Ballet School's summer program, Dance Masters of America, Brandywine Ballet, Doylestown Ballet, and Coupé Dance Theatre.

Upon retiring from the stage in 1996 Ms. Lyras joined the professional staff of the Sky Rink at Chelsea Piers in New York City, and directed the ballet program designed exclusively for figure skaters. She has taught off-ice company classes for the Ice Theatre of New York and with Moira North, Ice Theatre's Artistic Director, created the Ice Theatre Performance Club. This program provided children, 7-16 years of age, the opportunity to develop and enhance their performing skills. The Ice Theatre Junior Performance Club also appeared on several occasions at Rockefeller Center including the annual Tree Lighting Celebration.

In June of 1998 Ms. Lyras joined the staff of the Ice House in Hackensack, New Jersey, where she developed the ballet program in The American Academy of Skating Arts with its Co-Directors, Lori Moran and Valerie Levine, and Training Coordinator, Elaine Zayak.

Ms. Lyras founded the Indianapolis School of Ballet in August 2006.

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