Lisa Cuizon began her training at age 8 at Rozann/ Zimmerman Ballet Center in Chatsworth, CA; a noteworthy studio as it was directly affiliated with Balanchine’s School of American Ballet. With that affiliation, Sheila Rozann had access to the ballerinas and male danseurs of New York City Ballet who would come as guest teachers to impart their knowledge. In addition, Sheila Rozann and her partner, Eleanor Zimmerman, who taught the younger division, would attend a yearly seminar taught by Balanchine himself on what he was streamlining from his Russian Imperial Ballet training. So, at age 12, Lisa received a Ford Foundation scholarship for her local training and by age 15 she was awarded a full scholarship to attend The School of American Ballet by prima ballerina, Violette Verdy. At The School of American Ballet she would be trained by noted Russian ballerinas, Madame Danilova and Madame Doubrovska as well as Russian-trained Madame Tumkovsky and Madame Kosmovska. In addition, she was fortunate to also have Muriel Stuart of Royal Ballet and Stanley Williams of Royal Danish Ballet and his Bournonville training. Her world of dance was opened up and she knew then this was the life she wanted to pursue!
At 17, she would be taken under Melissa Hayden’s tutelage, prima ballerina assoluta of NYCB who had just retired after 30 years. She would remain under her watchful eye and then would join her at Pacific Northwest Ballet in 1976 as a soloist. Following this, she continued her 10 year professional career dancing with Pennsylvania Ballet, Arizona Ballet, Puerto Rican Dance Theatre, Cleveland Ballet and then returning to her native Los Angeles to dance with Los Angeles Chamber Ballet. She is also very proud of her training under her mentor and friend, Wilhelm Burmann who through their many years of friendship would always be there to guide her.
Lisa has been teaching for over 39 years and opened her own studio in 2001. It was her dream to offer training at a professional level since she had seen her own dream of being a dancer come true. She wanted to make that a reality for other students whose dream it was to pursue a career as a dancer. She chooses her staff carefully, making sure that each teacher has had a career of their own and therefore, knows what it truly takes to choose the life of a dancer.
Lisa’s students have gone on to be professional dancers in both the ballet world and contemporary world. They have also been accepted to the top ballet schools of this country, Pacific Northwest Ballet, School of American Ballet, Suzanne Farrell’s, Miami City Ballet, Ballet Chicago, Alonzo King’s Lines and Boston Ballet. In the contemporary world they have attended Hubbard Dance, Complexions and Alvin Ailey. Her students have been accepted to the top University programs which include, University of Oklahoma, University of Indiana, Butler University, Fordham University/ Ailey program, University of North Carolina School of the Arts, University of Arizona, Point Park University, Duke University, SUNY Purchase College, Johns Hopkins Peabody Institute, and Chapman University.