Congratulations to Our Wonderful 2017 Graduates!


Today six of IBT Academy students are graduating:

Julie Gillan, Caitlin Edelman, Hannah Baugher, Sandy Zeng, and Alison Tatsuoka have been part of IBT since our very early years in Malvern.

Rhonda Rinicella joined IBT Academy a little later but has very quickly become part of our Ballet family.

Their progress and many accomplishments throughout the years deserve a closer look.

Several have competed over the years,


  • Sandy and Hannah have been both awarded Second Place in Contemporary Category at YAGP, while Alison, Sandy, and Hannah have all places in Top 12 in the past;

and as a group:

  • for 4 years these young ballerinas were part of different award-winning competition group pieces choreographed specifically for our school. These pieces have won first and second places at YAGP and have been largely recognized and praised by the judges.

In addition to competing, the graduates have danced difficult leading roles in our ballet performances:

  • Alison dazzled this spring as Giselle. She was extensively praised for this performance by IBT Guest Teacher Natalia Bondar-Shelest who called her a true artist of the Classical Ballet because of the way Alison emotionally connected with the audience. Alison was also praise by the Principal Dancer of New Jersey Ballet Company who was in the audience and said that Alison performed like a professional dancer in every way;
  • Throughout the years of their training all of the graduating students beautifully performed a long list of lead Nutcracker and Paquita roles.

Outside of the Ballet realm, we would also like to highlight our graduates' admirable academic achievements and impressive list of extracurricular activities.

As you go down this list please keep in mind that these girls were able to achieve all that while training for over 15 hours per week.


  • is on her school's National Honors Society Board and on her school's Red Team, which helps with decorations/ props/makeup for school theater productions.
    She has entered a 6-year pre-physicians assistant program at University of Pittsburgh. She also works at a nonprofit called TACA that helps families with autism.


  • has been playing piano since the age of 5 and has won prizes in many regional and national competitions. She is a member of National Honor Society and will be majoring at Columbia University at NYC in either physics or English language. 


  • is a Member of the National Honors Society, President of Key Club (national service club), of women in science and engineering club. She sings in a choir and teaches Chinese dance. She volunteers at Paoli hospital and is an Allied Health intern at Phoenixville Hospital. Sandy is attending Columbia University in NYC as a biochemistry major with a pre-med track.


  • is a member of Math Honor Society, secretary of Latin Honor Society, and member of the National Honor Society. Caitlin volunteers with the Ambulatory Surgical Unit of the Paoli Hospital. She will be attending Univerisyty of Pittsburgh pre-physician assistant program.


  • is a member of French National Honor Society. She is a member of Relay for Life Club and No More Club, which discusses violence and sexual assault. Hannah teaches at Pancott Gymnastics. She will be pursuing Classical Ballet further and spending her summer at Pacific Northwest Ballet program for which she received a scholarship.


  • is a Vice President of Mathematics Honor Society. Her major is Agriculture Business Management with the Provost scholarship for Penn State University. In addition to performing with IBT Julie has has also participated in three Malvern Theater Society productions of musicals. In Grease she played a lead role of Cha Cha.

The Faculty is excited to see what's next in store for you and is wishing the very best in all of your future endeavors. 

The Faculty knows that without the dedication of ouf this group of girls who are graduating today, and without massive support of their parents IBT would not be where we are today.

Thank you, Janice Baugher, Mary Jo Edelman, Jane Gillan, Xiaohua Huang, Qun Jiao, and Honey Rinicella for supporting us with  

  • generous donating,
  • endless hours of volunteering,
  • and for managing concession stand and gift tables at EVERY SINGLE PERFORMANCE that we put up in the past 10 years.

On behalf of every single member of the Faculty and from the bottom of their hearts allow me to say a very big THANK YOU for being such an amazing source of support not just for your children but also for the IBT Academy and Company.

Last but not least we would also like to say goodbye to Claire Kim who has been our student since the age of 5. Claire is not graduating today but is moving to Japan with her family and we wish her all the very best and hope that both she and our graduates will stay in touch with IBT.

We are a big ballet family. As our students often say, "There is no "i" in IBT."

Thank you all for yet another inspiring Academic Year that has come to an end.