Welcome 2020/21
New & Returning Artists

We are excited to announce the 2020/21 Company, which includes 2 former company members who are returning, Brandon Lee Alley and Livona Ellis, and one new guest artist, Rena Narumi!

A North Carolina native, Brandon began his dance training at the Eastern Randolph High School when he was 14 under the direction of Britt Allen. He later attended the Greensboro Ballet’s year-long program on a full scholarship and graduated from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts specializing in contemporary dance in 2012. Brandon has attended summer intensives with Ballet Austin, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and LINES Ballet. He began his professional career with Hubbard Street 2 and was a member of BODYTRAFFIC in 2014/15. At age 20 Brandon joined Ballet BC and performed works by many prestigious choreographers such as Crystal Pite, Sharon Eyal, Johan Inger, Jorma Elo, Cayetano Soto, Emily Molnar and Medhi Walerski. Brandon has recently collaborated with Company 605, Rachel Mayer and Inverso Production. In 2013, he choreographed his first work, a duet performed by members of Hubbard Street 2 followed by two new works for the Arts Umbrella Dance Company. Brandon has also honed his skills as a teacher and movement guide while working as an instructor at the Hubbard Street summer intensives, Ballet BC workshops as well teaching for Lamondance and the Richmond Academy. Brandon is the Co-Founder and Director of Dance//Novella where he is a creative director, choreographer, performer and teacher. In his free time, he continues to dive into cross-disciplinary work that includes, visual art, poetry and music.

After stepping away from Ballet BC in 2019, I realized that if I wanted to continue developing as a dance artist, I had to demand more of myself and my actions in and outside of the studio. 

It is no longer okay to just dance. 

As artists, we must support one another, instil an honest awareness of inequality and inspire younger generations to go beyond what we currently think is possible.”

Livona Ellis was born in Vancouver on the unceded Coast Salish Territories. She completed her training at Arts Umbrella under the direction of Artemis Gordon. In 2010 she received her Dance Diploma and began dancing with Ballet BC. She has been fortunate to perform works by world renowned artists such as Crystal Pite, Sharon Eyal, Lesley Telford, Johan Inger, William Forsythe, and many others. Independently she has collaborated with Jennifer McLeish-Lewis for the EDAM Spring Series and Rachel Meyer and Jennifer Mascall for Dancing on the Edge Festival 2019.

She has created works for Dances for a Small Stage, Dance Deck Trois, Public Salon 2019, Contemporary Art Gallery Gala 2018, and Arts Umbrella Season Finale. In 2017 she received the Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award for Emerging Artist.

This past year Livona staged Medhi Walerski’s Prelude on Staatsoper Hannover in Germany and was a guest artist with Konzert Theater Bern in Switzerland.

Livona is currently on faculty at Arts Umbrella and is also the programming advisor for BC Movement Arts Society directed by Mary-Louise Albert. She will be joining Ballet BC for their 2020/21 season.

“I am thrilled to have this opportunity to get back into the studio and work to define the importance of dance. I look forward to bringing my experience and voice to keep reinventing this art form and to continue growing alongside these wonderful artists.”

Rena Narumi was born in Tokyo, Japan. She trained at Centre d’artchoregraphique Franco-Japonais in Paris, France, and Arts Umbrella dance graduate program in Vancouver, BC, under the direction of Artemis Gordon and Lynn Shepard. After her graduation, she performed with ProArteDanza, Kidd Pivot (apprentice), Hessischen Staatstheaters Wiesbaden, Royal Swedish Ballet (RSB), and Nederlands Dans Theater 1 (NDT1).

She has worked with renowned choreographers such as Mats Ek, Crystal Pite, Ohad Naharin, Sol Leon/Paul Lightfoot, Johan Ingar, Alexander Ekman, Orjan Andersson, Sharon Eyal, Franck Chartier/Gabriela Carrizo (Peeping Tom) and more.

With RSB in Sweden, she performed the main role of Juliet in Juliet and Romeo by Mats Ek in many theaters, including Paris Opera Garnier in Paris and Sadler’s Welles Theater in London. With NDT1, she traveled all over the world to perform.

Since 2018, she became freelance based in Netherlands.

Her most recent performance was with Kidd Pivot for new creation of Revisor by Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young.

Rena is thrilled to be a part of the Ballet BC member for 2020/21 season.

“I am truly excited and grateful to be a part of Ballet BC for the upcoming season and sharing the experience and new adventures.

Thank you very much to Medhi Walerski for giving me a beautiful opportunity to work with you and the whole company.”


Want to know who else is returning this season? See all the artists in our 2020/21 company and read their bios by clicking below!

See Full Company

Ballet BC dancer Brandon Lee Alley. Photo by Michael Slobodian.
Ballet BC dancer Livona Ellis. Photo by Michael Slobodian.
Guest Artist Rena Narumi. Photo by Rahi Rezvani.