Universal Ballet
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Julia H. Moon / General Director
  • Born in Washington, D.C., Julia Moon began her professional training in Seoul, at the Sun Hwa Arts School. After further study at the Royal Ballet School in London and L’Academie de Danse Classique de Princess Grace in Monaco, she began her dancing career at the Washington Ballet working with Choo San Goh and Mary Day. She returned to Korea as a foundingmember of Universal Ballet in 1984, dancing leading roles in much of the company’s repertory, including the leads in Giselle, Swan Lake, Sleeping Beauty, Don Quixote, La Bayadere, La Sylphide, Coppelia, and The Nutcracker. She was one of the dancers chosen to dance the lead role in Universal Ballet’s Shim Chung, when the ballet was first created in 1986.
    In 1989, she became the first Asian to appear as a guest principal with the Kirov Ballet in St. Petersburg. Working together with Oleg Vinogradov since 1992, she has led Universal Ballet to inherit the Russian classical ballet tradition, a leading force in the development of classical ballet in Korea. Touring extensively worldwide her performances in Korea and overseas have brought her great praise for her interpretation and artistry.
    Moon has served as General Director of Universal Ballet since 1996 and as Chairwoman of the Universal Ballet Academy in Seoul and the Kirov Academy of Ballet of Washington, DC, as well as advisor to the Sun Hwa Arts School ballet division. She has served on the jury for several international ballet competitions, including the Maya Plisetskaya International Ballet Competition in 1996, the Varna International Ballet Competition in 2002 and the Helsinki International Ballet Competition and Premio Roma in 2005, and the Jackson IBC in 2006. Her many awards include the Young Artist Award given by Korea’s Ministry of Culture and the Presidential Award for the Performing Arts. She has also received an honorary doctorate from the Moscow State University of the Arts. In 2010, she was awarded the Order of Cultural Merit Hwakwan from the Korean government.
Oleg Vinogradov / Artistic Director Emeritus
  • Born in St. Petersburg, Russia in 1937, Oleg Vinogradov graduated from the Vaganova Ballet Academy where he studied with Alexander Pushkin. A classmate of Rudolf Nureyev, Vinogradov commenced his dance career at the Theater of Opera and Ballet in Novosibirsk where he became Ballet Master in 1961 and did his first choreography. In 1965 he joined the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow for two years as a choreographer, and in was appointed Director of the Maly Theater of Opera and Ballet in St. Petersburg. Following that, he was Artistic Director of one of the oldest ballet ensembles in the world, the Kirov Ballet at the historic Maryinsky Theater in St. Petersburg, for 23 years. While preserving the ballets of the Russian classical legacy, Vinogradov developed an innovative cultural exchange with the West. He introduced Kirov Ballet audiences to the works of important western choreographers, including Bejart, Tudor, Lacotte, Bournonville, Petit, Balanchine and Robbins. His own choreographic achievements include Romeo & Juliet, Cinderella and numerous other works. Vinogradov began his association with Universal Ballet in 1990 when he became Artistic Director of the then newly founded Universal Ballet Academy, and the Kirov Academy of Ballet of Washington, DC. He worked with Universal Ballet in Seoul on numerous occasions beginning in 1992, staging Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Sleeping Beauty, La Bayadere and other works. He took the post of Artistic Director of Universal Ballet in 1998, and in 2008 became Artistic Director Emeritus. He has received numerous honors including the Prize of the Russian Federation (1970), the Petipa Prize (1979), and the Pablo Picasso Prize (1987). He was named People’s Artist of the USSR in 1983. The French Republic awarded him the honorary title of Chevalier for special merit in culture and the arts
Brian Yoo / Artistic Director
  • Born in Jilin, China, Bingxian Liu graduated from the Jilin Arts School and afterwards studied dance pedagogy at the Beijing Dance Academy. After graduating he taught for a while at his alma mater in Beijing, later joining Universal Ballet as a soloist.

    For two years, beginning in 1995, he was ballet master and choreographer at the Guangzhou Ballet in China, and from 1997 at the National Ballet of China in Beijing. Dancers who prepared under his coaching have won gold and silver medals in the international ballet competitions in Varna, Paris and elsewhere.

    In 1999, Bingxian rejoined Universal Ballet as Ballet Master, and was promoted to Assistant Artistic Director in 2000, and Artistic Director in 2009. For a number of years he also served as the Director of the ballet department of Sun Hwa Arts Middle and High School. While at Universal Ballet, he has choreographed several ballets in the for the company, most recently the company’s new full-length Korean ballet, The Love of Chunhyung, which premiered in 2007. His shorter works in the company’s repertory include Paganini Rhapsody, Rachmaninov Piano Concerto, and The Colors.
Evgeny Neff  / Assistant Director
  • Evgenii Neff was born in the Krasnoyarsk region of the former Soviet Union, graduated from the Tallinn Ballet Academy, and joined the Estonia Ballet, where he danced both classic and contemporary ballets as principal dancer. In 1981 he joined the Kirov Ballet in St. Petersburg. While there he danced many principal parts in performances in Russia and on international tours, including the lead parts in Les Sylphides, Giselle, Sleeping Beauty, La Sylphide, Swan Lake and many other ballets. After finishing his career as a dancer he joined the staff of the Kirov Ballet as a ballet master, at the same time working as a guest teacher with other ballet companies. In May of 1998, he came to the staff of Universal Ballet as ballet master when Oleg Vinogradov took the helm as Artistic Director. He was promoted to Assistant Director in 2006.
  • Julie Lee / Ballet Mistress