Meet The Directors
Meet The American Theater Dance Workshop
Artistic Directors: Michelle And Jerome Vivona
Jerome began his training on Long Island as a ballet dancer eventually landing in Ali Pourfarrokh's class in Port Washington. Shortly afterwards he was accepted on Scholarship to the Joffrey Ballet School in NYC and made his debut with the Joffrey Ballet Concert Group. During that time Jerome was highly sought after for his portrayal of the Blue Bird in the pas de deux from Sleeping Beauty. He was then cast as the Nutcracker Prince in the New Jersey Ballet's holiday production under the direction of Carolyn Clark and Edward Villella.
As a Soloist with the NJB he had the privilege of working with Agnes DeMille on "Rodeo", was cast as the lead in Robert North's "Let's Go South" and danced in Antony Tudor's "Jardin aux Lilas" among others. Jerome would then travel to Edmonton, Canada to join the Alberta Ballet under the direction of Ali Pourfarrokh. While there he was featured in both new works and classic ballets such as: "Games", "Tango", "Coppelia" and the Nutcracker. He moved next to California to dance with the Oakland Ballet under the direction of Ronn Guidi. Jerome was featured in many new and contemporary ballets including the world premieres of "Gypsies" and the reproduction of the Nijinsky ballet "Le Train Bleu" featured in Dance Magazine. He returned to the NJB and began auditioning for Musical Theater. His first role was that of Paul in A Chorus Line at the Bucks County Playhouse, which led to him being cast in the National Tour of Jerome Robbins' Broadway where the legendary Jerome Robbins himself rehearsed him.
Michelle began studying dance at the age of 4 at her parents' studio, in Pittsburgh, Pa. Her parents are both veterans of Broadway, television and film having worked with Luigi, Bob Fosse, and Jerome Robbins, Jack Cole, Michael Kidd, Peter Gennaro, Carol Haney and many other luminaries of the time as well as featuring on the Perry Como show. Michelle followed her dreams to NYC and shortly thereafter landed her first role as the Tap Leader in the National Tour of On Your Toes starring Leslie Caron and Natalia Makarova. She then was cast as Lorraine in 42nd Street, which led to her Broadway debut in Sweet Charity directed by Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon starring Debbie Allen, Bebe Neuwirth and later Ann Reinking. Anything Goes was next starring Patti Lupone, followed by working for Jerome Robbins in Gypsy with Tyne Daly and Linda Lavin.
Michelle and Jerome met as they were partnered together in the Paris Company of West Side Story. Returning home, they toured the US and Japan in Guys and Dolls Directed by Jerry Zaks and Choreographed by the late Chris Chadman, starring Lorna Luft. Jerome made his Broadway debut in the same show starring Nathan Lane. Soon after, they were married and moved to Long Island. Michelle joined the line at Radio City Musical Hall as a Rockette and Jerome opened on Broadway in How to Succeed in Business without Really Trying Directed by Des McAnuff and Choreographed by Wayne Cilento, starring Matthew Broderick, Megan Mullally, Sarah Jessica Parker and John Stamos. As Dance Captains, they took the show on the road with Ralph Macchio. Jerome assisted Wayne Cilento on his next Broadway project Dream, a Johnny Mercer Musical starring Leslie Ann Warren. Jerome went on to feature in the original Broadway casts of Seussical, the Musical Directed by Oscar Winner Rob Marshall and Choreographed by Tony Winner Kathleen Marshall, and then Kiss Me, Kate Directed by Tony Winner's Michael Blakemore and Kathleen Marshall. Michelle was then cast in Thoroughly Modern Millie Directed by Tony Winner Michael Mayer and Choreographed by Tony Winner Rob Ashford, starring Tony Winner Sutton Foster. Jerome was then featured in the Kander and Ebb musical Curtains, directed by Tony Winner Scott Ellis and Choreographed by Tony Award Winner Rob Ashford, and starring the Emmy and Tony Award Winner David Hyde Pierce. During that time, Jerome went on to become an award winning Director/Choreographer staging such shows as: How to Succeed…, West Side Story, Guys and Dolls, Sweet Charity, Footloose and The Producers. While also writing/directing and choreographing the original shows An American Canteen in Paris and Spotlight Broadway for the James L. Nederlander Organization and Celebrity Cruise Lines, respectively.