About the ZDT Trainee Program

ZDT is a project-based professional company that offers a unique career-oriented educational program for advanced pre-professional dancers ages 15 - 22. The company’s trainees are selected annually through an audition process to participate in a three-week integrated company experience during the summer, culminating in a performance at the New Century Dance Project Festival. In 2022, the ZDT Company Summer Residency, Trainee Company Experience, and NCDP festival will take place in beautiful Santa Fe, NM.

Through this uniquely curated experience, dancers discover a stronger sense of self, and develop an understanding of the distinct philosophy and approach of ZDT through working closely with Artistic Directors Francisco Gella and Yusha-Marie Sorzano, and other guest artists invited to participate. Vitally, this intimate program inspires a greater connection to the dance world within each young artist’s professional journey.

Dancers selected to be Zeitgeist Trainees are offered an immersive company experience encompassing both training and performance designed to play a significant role in their preparation for a future professional performance career. The Trainee’s schedule will run parallel to that of the professional dancers and apprentices from July 17 - August 7. There will be designated opportunities for trainees to participate in some of the professional company classes and other company activities. Notably, ZDT artistic directors will be working with all dancers – professionals, apprentices and trainees - to create a cohesive team experience and environment. Trainees will also benefit from additional support and mentorship from the professional ZDT company dancers.

Our Commitment to Recruiting a Diverse Group of Trainees
and Creating a Community of Belonging

Bringing together students from diverse cultures, countries, and backgrounds creates the richest possible environment for learning and cultivates an artistic setting for the most innovative and powerful dance making. ZDT makes every effort to bring together young artists representing the world in which we live, taking into account gender, age, ethnicity and race, and internationalism, geographic origins such as urbanism and ruralism; socioeconomic background; sexual orientation and gender identity; religious beliefs; and political points of view. 

Equally important, our staff foster a community that lives out an active commitment to respecting our differences and each dancer’s authenticity and individuality. We nurture an atmosphere that binds us together as human beings through recognizing our shared intrinsic value, where every dancer feels dignity, respect, and a sense of belonging from other members of the community.  

Auditioning for Summer 2022 

*Deadline: February 7 

The ZDT Trainee Company will consist of 30 dancers ages 15 - 22. 2021 Trainees are invited back for 2022. We anticipate position openings and are actively recruiting preprofessional dancers to take a role this coming summer. 

Eligibility to Audition:

  • Must be at least age 15 through final year in BFA/BA Dance Program at the time of auditioning. 

  • Dancers up to age 22 who have graduated from high school who are not in college but are actively training may audition.

  • Pursuing a professional dance performance career .

  • International dancers are strongly encouraged to audition along with dancers from the United States. 

  • Must be available from July 17 - August 7.

Audition Requirements:

  • An improv video no more than 2 minutes in length.

  • A solo video no more than 2-4 minutes in length. It can be filmed in a studio or be a competition or other performance video.

  • Both videos should have been filmed no earlier than January 2021.  The more recent, the better. 

  • Videos may be sent by Google Drive or Dropbox links. 

  • Clothing you are wearing for videos should be form-fitting enough to see your lines clearly.

  • Include a short personal statement of 200 words or less explaining what you believe you would uniquely add to our group of 2022 Trainees.

  • Include the following information: First and last name; preferred gender pronouns; mobile number; email address; street address, city, state/region, country, zip/mailing code; birthdate; school, studio or college that provides your primary training.


Your materials must be sent to auditions@zeitgeistdancetheatre.org no later than Monday, February 7.

All Trainee candidates will be notified of decisions by March 1.

Summer 2022 Program Details

July 17 - August 7
Santa Fe, NM

What Should I Expect?

  • A daily schedule that will include company classes every morning

  • Learning choreography rep in the afternoon/evening
  • Seminars on career and professional dance topics
  • Mentor relationships with the artistic directors and educational director
  • Mentoring sessions with ZDT Company Dancers
  • Performing at the New Century Dance Project (NCDP) Festival Works-in-Progress show
  • Classes and workshops with choreographers and teaching artists through full participation in the NCDP choreography and performance intensive during Tuesday through Sunday of the third week
  • Acquisition of skills, experience, and video footage for college admission and/or professional company auditions
  • Learning the pace, structure and flow of professional company life through an extended immersion


Ages 15-22. At least three years of classical ballet training, modern, and contemporary, with cross-training in other styles preferred. Strong interest in pursuing a professional performance career required. Curiosity and interest in applying and integrating diverse styles of dance and other art forms desired.

Tuition / Room & Board 

Tuition and Room & Board costs and other details will be announced no later than January 31.


A limited amount of scholarship assistance will be offered to trainees with the highest amount of demonstrated financial need. Awards will be made after offers have been extended and before dancers need to make a commitment to accept.

Attendance Requirements

Dancers must be available and willing to commit to rehearsals and performances in-person from July 17 - August 7. Dancers will be expected to arrive in New Mexico on Sunday, July 17 and leave after 5pm on Sunday, August 7. 

For more information, please email auditions@zeitgeistdancetheatre.org.

The Summer 2021 Trainees

Austin, TX Residency

Sydney Alie

Aurora, CO

Steps on Broadway

Katie Baik

San Jose, CA

Bay Area Dance School/

Stanford University (Fall 2021)

Stephanie Bell

Miami, FL

New World School of the Arts/Armour Dance Theatre

Claire Brown

Asheville, NC

Center Stage Dance Studio

Meredith Brown

Asheville, NC

Fordham University BFA/

Training at the Ailey School

Eduardo Jimenez Cabrera

Cartago, Costa Rica

The University of the Arts BFA Program

Keagan Capps

Moore, OK

The Pointe PAC

Macy A Deppe

Orange, CA

Chapman University BFA Program

Ellery Donlon

Chandler, AZ

Arizona School for the Arts

Zuzu Duchon

Mill Valley, CA

Performing Arts Academy of Marin

Marissa Furfaro

Pittsburgh, PA

Thomas Dance Studio/SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance (Fall 2021)

Kaprice Janae Glen

Chino Hills, CA

Yorba Linda Academy of Ballet/Orange County School of the Arts/Butler University (Fall 2021)

Georgia Greene

Kings Mountain, NC

Stars Dance Company

Myah Haberstro

Deland, FL

Ballet Conservatory at Skyra

Addison Hill

Valencia, CA

LA County High School of the Arts/Shooting Stars Dance Studio

Brooke Judge

Gilbert, AZ

Club Dance Pre Professional Company

Jasmine Jade Klenotich

Charlotte, NC

United Ballet Theatre Trainee/Ballet Tutor Chiaki Yasukawa

Isabella Lynch

San Diego, CA


Courtney McColley

Dallas, TX

Booker T. Washington HSPVA/The Dallas Conservatory/Southern Methodist University (Fall 2021)

Laura Mendes

New York, NY

Joffrey Ballet School BFA Pre-Professional Program

Anastasia Miller

The Woodlands, TX

The University of Arizona BFA Program

Kiley Nomura

Honolulu, HI

Punahou Dance School

Chloe Ohira

Beaverton, OR

Arts and Communication Magnet Academy/Elevate Dance Academy

Georgia Robinson

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

YYC Dance Project/ Alberta Ballet School

Larissa Souki

Miami, FL

New World School of the Arts/Armour Dance Theatre

Alexander Thomas

Greenacres, FL

Dreyfoos School of the Arts/That's Dancing/USC Kaufman School of Dance (Fall 2021)

Aidan Ward

Sacramento, CA

Training Independently with Private Instruction/The New School (Fall 2021)

Shana Winer

Miami, FL

Miami Dance Collective