"Phyllis Rothwell Affrunti, a spectacular principal dancer, has always been a wonderful, inspiring teacher who gives everything to her students. She shares her gifts and talents generously, a truly brilliant teacher who makes ballet come alive for those fortunate enough to study with her."
Peter Anastos - Former Artistic Director Ballet Idaho/ Cincinnati Ballet/Director Emeritus Ballet Trocadero
"Phyllis Rothwell represents the best of what dance education is today in the US. Phyllis not only distinguished herself as a professional ballerina, rising to the rank of Principal Dancer with multiple companies, but Phyllis is also sought after as a dynamic instructor, choreographer and performance coach.
As a professional choreographer and director, I have had the honor of choreographing original work on Phyllis, so I know first hand, that in regard to shaping young dancers,she will model superb work ethic, integrity and support the mental and physical health of each and every child she interacts with; always empowering the youth she instructs, rather than breaking them down. I am thrilled for the future of dance education in Washington state, and I look forward to visiting as a guest instructor from NYC, as soon as possible."
Jeffrey Scott Bailey,
Director / Choreographer
Stage/ Television/ Film
"I have worked with Phyllis for over 7 years and she is one of the most professional, thorough, and hard working dancers and teachers I know. Phyllis patience, thoughtfulness, and skills help make her not only a strong teacher, but also a great role model for developing dancers."
Former Ballet Mistress Columbia City Ballet/Former Artistic Director of Sun Valley Ballet School.
"I have been a ballet teacher for over thirty years, and continue to take class to stay in shape and up to date. I believe that teachers are born, not made. Phyllis is a born teacher. She communicates her vast knowledge, concepts and creativity in a way that is easily understood by beginners and advanced, alike. She treats everyone with respect and gives equal attention to all students. It was honor to have her as my teacher."
Director of Backstage Dance Center
"As a child I remember sitting in the doorway of studio one and watching Phyllis teach the upper division students at Ballet Idaho. Her classes always looked like so much fun. Everyone was always laughing and having a good time yet still working hard and being challenged by the complexity of all the combinations being given. I remember watching her work through barre and center combinations with her students. She made everything look so easy. Her tendus and Degas effortless. Her adagio and pirouettes seamless and her renverse's as luscious as could be.
Throughout my dance training I worked with a wide variety of teachers however there was something special about Phyllis. She had this incredible ability to inspire young dancers like myself. Phyllis has the most beautiful energy and has always oozed positivity and passion. It's nearly impossible to not be inspired by her. Watching her demonstrate combinations with such incredible precision and grace encouraged me to work hard and still encourages me to this day.
When I first moved into Ballet Idaho's upper division I was still very much so in need of guidance as my lines needed adjusting and my technique still needed some work. I could not have asked for a more patient,passionate,and inspiring teacher to learn from. I will forever be grateful that I got to have the opportunity to work with Phyllis. I have learned so many amazing things from her over the years. And I believe that anyone that gets the opportunity to work with her is going to benefit greatly from their experience.
Phyllis gave me the tools and guidance I needed to not only be successful in the studio but to be successful in life. She encouraged me to work hard and push through things even when they get difficult.
Phyllis builds friendships with her students that they will cherish forever. She has been more than just my wonderful teacher and a remarkable mentor to me. She has been and will always be my friend and that means the world to me. Phyllis has made the most beautiful impact on my life. I truly hope that everyone gets the chance to work with her.
Thank you for everything Phyllis you have been and will always be an inspiration to me!"
Ballet Idaho Dancer/LED/Project Flux
“I always looked forward to Phyllis’ classes when I was her student. She looked out for all of my class and encouraged us to be our own artistic selves. She took great care in what she taught us technically and took us all under her wing. As I entered the professional world and encountered some resistance, she helped guide me towards a sense of confidence and fulfillment.”
Ballet Idaho Dancer/LED/University of Utah Graduate
"Being taught ballet by Ms. Rothwell were some of the most positive, formative years in my adolescence. Ballet is an art that requires hard work and discipline, but it is also incredibly rewarding, beautiful and fun. Ms. Rothwell has the expertise and grace to show you all of its aspects. She provides skillful technical training but also facilitates a warm and energetic environment. In addition, she is an exquisite dancer and role-model herself. I remember how my classmates and I would watch proudly and in awe from backstage as she performed principal roles in the professional company. What I remember more though, is how she treated all others with respect and how she made me feel when she cheered me on in the classroom. I could not be where I am today without her encouragement and training!"
Yale University/UNC School of Medicine
"Taking classes, both public and private, with Phyllis Rothwell helped elevate my abilities as a dancer far beyond what I had envisioned for myself. Her attention to detail and passion for her students is second to none. Without her passion and influence in my life, I can truly attest that I wouldn’t be where I am today as an artist without her. I cannot recommend Phyllis enough."
Gregory A. Mauger
Artist / Photographer
"Phyllis establishes strong technique and inspires artistic excellence."
Teacher at Ballet Idaho/Executive Assistant at Mountain Land Design
"Our family has known Miss Phyllis for many years! Our daughter started dance at 3 1/2 years old at the academy where Phyllis taught and the company Phyllis Rothwell danced in. She had Miss Phyllis as a teacher for many years when she was older, and she also took private lessons from her for several years as well. Vanessa learned many different ballet excerpts from Phyllis, as well as correct techniques and training work. Phyllis is a very talented dancer, a kind person, exceptional teacher, and was always one of the favorite teachers of many young ladies during Vanessa's dance career. Students should feel privileged to have Miss Phyllis as an instructor. Highly recommend."
"Phyllis Rothwell is an amazing ballet teacher and dancer. She has an extensive repertroire of ballet roles to teach to her students. She is kind to her students and is able to get students to dance their best. I have seen her work with her students with passion and utilizes her extensive knowledge to give corrections to help the dancer grow and improve. I highly recommend taking classes from Phyllis."
Jennifer Floyd Hilton
Adult Ballet Student
"I am not a dancer so I can’t comment on technicalities of dance. As a parent of young dancers, I look for mentors who value building kids up, help kids find their strength and help them find their true potentials. Mentors that help them grow in grace, promote self love, self acceptance,respect and self worth.
Phyllis is an amazing human being, first and foremost. Her method of teaching comes from a place where students feel loved and motivated not just to dance but be better human beings as well.
Our daughters are so fortunate to have met and have Phyllis as their ballet teacher. Their growth as dancers are immense in their own way in the 2 years that they have her as their mentor. She is firm yet gentle, she empowers, she maintains a positive environment for her students. She offers positive reinforcements and constructive criticisms. She makes learning fun, interesting.
As a teacher of her caliber, with 25 years of professional dance experience under her belt, she is humble, non-judgemental and have her student's future's best interest and well-being at heart."
Inday Egarle Mayat
"Taking classes from Ms Phyllis is always something I look forward to. She’s kind, energetic, and makes all of her students feel like they’re getting individual attention. She creates a positive teaching atmosphere and is always finding new ways to help us improve. I can’t wait to start attending classes once the studio opens!"
"As a parent of a young dancer, I have been impressed with Phyllis and her teaching style. She is kind and encouraging with a vast knowledge of technique and form. My daughter has enjoyed attending Phyllis' classes and looks forward to more in the future."
Tiffany Singer Jenes
Washington State Youth Ballet
705 Rose Street A Walla Walla, WA 99362 US
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Announcing our first full-length Nutcracker December 16 - 18th at the Gesa Power House!!!! WSYB now offers new and exciting classes in Highland Dancing, Adult Ballet, Junior Contemporary, and Musical Theatre. Come join our family.