About the Director
In 1987, Ms. Banke was nominated for an international Emmy and for the European equivalent, the Golden Rose, for her starring television role in the widely watched HeltApropå (variety show styled after Saturday Night Live). Swedish TV just celebrated that success with a 25-year reunion show.
Over her performing career, Ms. Banke danced in The Nutcracker, Swan Lake, and Sleeping Beauty and toured Europe, performing lead roles in Cabaret, Fiddler on the Roof, Sweet Charity, Kiss Me Kate, and Little Shop of Horrors. Ms. Banke arrived in the United States in 1990, and in 1992, opened Dance Studio No.1 in West Los Angeles with programs in ballet, jazz, flamenco, and tap.
Ms. Banke choreographs and directs a minimum of two events for her students each year, which are produced in association with SoCal Ballet. Past productions include The Little Match Girl, The Elves and the Shoemaker, The Snow Fairies (2009), Chopiniana, Peter & the Wolf, The Four Seasons (2010), Tales about Tails, Paquita, La Boutique Fantasque, Ragtime (2011), Carnival of the Animals (2012), and Copelia. In addition Ms. Banke and her staff co-create a large number of original variety shows that include ballet, student choreography, other dance form and influences such as jazz, hip hop, tap, modern, flamenco, and folk, all taught at DS1 and performed to the delight of family and friends.
Ms. Banke joined the Royal Academy of Dance (R.A.D.) in 1997, received her teaching certificate in 2000, and diploma in 2002. In 2012, Ms. Banke also gained American Ballet Theatre certification.