Get To Know The Company

Daniel Benavides

Principal Dancer

Daniel Benavides grew up dancing Ballet Folkloric, Mexican folk dance, up to his senior year in high school. At the time seventeen, Benavides joined the high schools highest dance team, Dance Production. He then began his ballet training through the S.T.E.P. UP program at Anaheim Ballet. On full scholarship his second year, Benavides’s was on a professional career track with the Anaheim Ballet. Within those 2 years of just beginning ballet, he was accepted to attend programs with American Ballet Theater and San Francisco Ballet. Furthering his training, Benavides accepted a full scholarship that included room and board to go train with the San Francisco Ballet School. After two years of training with SFB and performing with the company he moved on to begin his dancing career.

Joining Boston Ballet II in 2004 Benavides got to work with amazing choreographers and gained more performance experience that added to his repertoire.

During the summer prior to joining Orlando Ballet in 2006, Benavides was dancing with The Suzanne Farrell Ballet, where they went on tour with to Scotland and performed at the Edinburgh Festival. Benavides has been with Orlando Ballet for seventeen seasons where he has performed leading and soloist roles like: Cavalier, Drosselmyer, Tybalt, Birbanto, Von Rothbart, The Beast and Dracula. During his time with Orlando Ballet, Benavides got to work and perform works by choreographers such as Twyla Tharp, Jessica Lang, Lila York, Peter Chu, Bruce Marks, Michael Pink, and Robert Hill. Benavides got the opportunity set a ballet as well teach during the Summer Programs. Benavides has also been a Guest Artist and Teacher with other companies and schools.

I am very shy and quiet and terrified of public speaking. The minute I get into the studio or on stage that disappears. It makes me feel powerful, confident and you get to hear live music and close! When I am performing im not just dancing I am also acting, and when the role takes over, you learn more about yourself and what the audience now sees is the artistry of a dancers.

Place of Birth: Anaheim, California

One word to describe why I dance: ” Dedication”

Favorite Color: Blue

Favorite Role danced: Dracula

Dream Role: Lensky from Onegin

Favorite Choreographer: David Dawson

Favorite Traditional Ballet: Romeo and Juliet

Favorite Cuisine / Dish: Mexican

Favorite hobby: `Web Design (coding)

A Fun Fact about me: I grew up dancing Ballet Folkloric which is nothing like Ballet up to high school where I began Ballet at the age of seventeen.

What would you like your audience/community to gain from your performances: I love what I do, and every show is different for me, just like the audience. Every time I go on stage no matter how many times, I danced the same role or ballet or if im exhausted during double show day, I always get nervous. right before I step on stage. Which I am but I go on that stage and give my heart and soul because there is always someone in the audience that is attending or the first time. My goal is to spark something in the audience in hopes, like my first going to the ballet, found it inspiring.