Sat, 05/14/2022 - 3:00pm to 5:00pm

 A&A Ballet (A&A), one of the fastest growing performing arts and educational organizations in Chicago, under the artistic direction of Alexei Kremnev and Anna Reznik, today announced a new Family Dance Series at the Athenaeum Theatre, premiering May 14, 2022 at 3 p.m. Fresh from a successful Chicago Youth American Grand Prix competition, the company will debut their take on the internationally acclaimed “Carnival of the Animals” and a world premiere of “The Firebird,” featuring brand-new choreography by Kremnev and sand art animation by Anastasia Antropova. Additional choreography for “The Firebird” will be done by Braeden Barnes. Designed to be enjoyed by the entire family, the selections are recommended for ages three and above. 

Image courtesy of A&A Ballet

“We are very excited to renew the Family Dance Theater Series on a new level,” said Kremnev. “As founding Artistic Directors of the Joffrey Academy and the Joffrey Studio Company, we started the Children's Ballet Theater program at the Joffrey in 2010 by presenting new innovative family-oriented works that excite a new generation of young audiences. Our demanding XXI Century requires us to experiment with new visual forms and to be creative and daring. A&A has a wonderful record of producing new works, so we are happy to share this program with the Chicago audiences.”   

Described as “equal parts comedic and captivating with a forceful wit and choreography bursting with nuanced athleticism” by Huffing Post, Carnival of the Animals showcases Kremnev’s talent as an electric storyteller. Breathing new life into a beloved masterpiece, Kremnev’s adaptation serves as a playful reminder to ballet enthusiasts, while introducing new audiences to the artform itself. The costumes, created by Laura Skarich and Ballet Rosa, have been designed specifically for each dancer featuring original art digitally printed onto the fabric.  

The world premiere of “Firebird” is Kremnev’s 21st ballet, and his first to feature sand art designed by artist Anastasia Antropova. Projected onto the stage throughout the performance, the sand art combines art, music and dance by drawing in the sand to create moving effects, enhancing the storytelling of the performers. Serving as an accessible introduction to the work of Stravinsky, “Firebird” is a celebration of the power of music and ballet. 

Tickets for the Family Dance Series featuring “Carnival of the Animals” and “Firebird” are on sale now and can be purchased here. The production will take place at the Athenaeum Theatre, located at 2936 N Southport Avenue, on May 14, at 3 p.m. 

For more information, please visit

A&A BALLET is one of the fastest growing performing arts and educational organizations in Chicago and has quickly gained an impressive national and international reputation. A&A BALLET is devoted to training in strong, versatile dance technique, as well as the development of personality, independence and artistry. Led by internationally acclaimed artists and former Founding Artistic Directors of the Joffrey Academy and Joffrey Studio Company, Anna Reznik and Alexei Kremnev, A&A offers a wide variety of classes, professional performance opportunities, international tours, private instruction, choreography and training for dancers ranging from age 3 to adult. Since 2016, A&A students have secured more than 150 full scholarships and a dozen apprentice and studio company positions with powerhouses including American Ballet Theater, Houston Ballet, Princess Grace Academy of Monaco, Bolshoi Ballet, Colorado Ballet, BalletMet and Sarasota Ballet.

Based in their new state-of-the-art in Printers Row, A&A is committed to ensuring the safety of all its students, performers, staff, and visitors amidst the global pandemic. A&A staff strictly enforce social distancing guidelines, facial coverings are to be worn at all times when inside the building, and students and staff alike are encouraged to stay at home if they feel any COVID-19 symptoms.

For more information visit or call 312.545.2142. 

Alexei Kremnev is the co-founder of A&A Ballet, formerly the founding Artistic Director of The Joffrey Academy of Dance and the Joffrey Studio Company (2009-2016) dedicated to developing young talent. He began his career in Moscow at the world-famous Bolshoi Ballet Academy (Degree of Ballet Artist), the Russian Academy of Theatrical Art (GITIS), and the Moscow State Academy of Choreography (Degree in Pedagogy and Choreography). Either as a principal artist, choreographer or teacher, he has worked internationally with the Moscow Festival Ballet (Russian National Ballet), England's Northern Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, Cincinnati Ballet, BalletMet, Tulsa Ballet Theatre, Bolshoi, Russian and European Stars of the Ballet. Kremnev received superlative reviews.

He received the Outstanding Choreographer Award at Youth America Grand Prix (YAGP) in 2021, 2009, 2007, and 2006 as well as the Outstanding Teacher Award in 2017 and 2018. Additionally, he is the Laureate of the Leonide Massine Award, the
Nureyev International, and Lifar International Ballet Competition. Kremnev’s choreography has been presented at the legendary Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow in 2004-2006, Lincoln Center in New York in 2015, and the Opernhaus Zurich in 2016 and 2017. In 2001, Kremnev was recognized as one of the Most Influential People in the Arts in Cincinnati and was elected to the Advisory Board on Eastern Europe for Illinois under Senator Mark Kirk in 2011.

In 2013, Kremnev received the Achievement Award in Culture from the Chicago Sister Cities International (CSCI), and the Business Leaders Award from the American Councils for International Education and Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the United States Department of State in 2017. Kremnev's artistic vision was also essential in the creation and success of the Gala of the International Ballet Stars in Cincinnati, Children's Ballet Theatre Series, and Winning Works: Choreographers of Color at the Joffrey Ballet.

Anna Reznik is the co-founder of A&A Ballet and former Founding Artistic Director of the Joffrey Academy and the Joffrey Studio Company (2009-2016) and has been praised for her extraordinary ability to work with today's young dancers. She began her career in Moscow at the world-famous Bolshoi Ballet Academy (Degree of Ballet Artist) and the Bolshoi Institute of Choreography (Degree in Pedagogy). Reznik toured throughout the world as a Principal Artist with the Moscow Festival Ballet (later the Russian National Ballet), England's Northern Ballet Theatre, Cincinnati Ballet, BalletMet, Tulsa Ballet Theatre, and in galas with the Bolshoi, Russian, and European Stars of the Ballet. Ms. Reznik has won numerous awards, including a Special Diaghilev Prize, Silver Medal at the 1996 Lifar International Ballet Competition, as well as the top prize at the 1996 Nureyev International Ballet Competition and the 1996 Maya International Ballet Competition. 


In 2002, Ms. Reznik was recognized as one of the most influential people in the Arts in Cincinnati. Her thorough knowledge of the most current teaching methods and styles has produced many dancers who have been accepted into some of the most prestigious companies and elite dance institutions worldwide, including American Ballet Theatre, New York City Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Staatsoper Berlin, Dresden Semperoper, Norwegian National Ballet, Nederlands Dans Theater, Polish National Ballet, Estonian National Ballet, New Zealand Royal Ballet, Atlanta Ballet, Alberta Ballet, Les Grands Ballet Canadiens, Cincinnati Ballet, Ballet Met, Kansas City Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Sarasota Ballet, Ballet San Jose, Tulsa Ballet, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Dortmund Ballet, Complexions, Royal Ballet School, USC Kaufmann School of Dance and many others.