Spotlight on 3 Graduating Pre-Professionals

Seniors and Pre-Professional students Adrien Malof, Lara DeBoy and Amirah Muhammad will be finishing their time at Neglia Conservatory of Ballet in June 2019. Their last performance as students with Neglia will be at the End-of-the-Year Conservatory Performance on Sunday June 9, 2019 at the Flickinger PAC on the Nichols School campus.

These three young women have been with Neglia for collectively for 30 years! Adrien started with Creative Movement at age 3 and Lara Started with Pre-Ballet at age 5. 

We're sad to see them leave us but are excited for the next chapters of their lives and we hope they visit whenever they're in Buffalo.



Adrien Malof

I will be graduating from Buffalo Academy for Visual Performing Arts as a dance major. I have been dancing at Neglia since I was 3 when I started in the Creative Movement Class and will be leaving this summer at 18 at the Pre-Professional level. In the fall I will be joining BalletMet Trainee Dance Program in Columbus, Ohio.

Being a part of Neglia for 14 years; it’s difficult to pinpoint my fondest memory, but I will always remember performing the 1st Nutcracker and being the smallest mouse and angel.

My favorite pieces to perform were Vivaldi and Waltz of the Flowers along with roles of Misha and Marie that allowed me to perform with BPO at Shea’s which will leave me with great lasting memories.

Over the years Neglia has taught me to be a disciplined and determined in not only dance; but in all aspects of my life.

Lastly, while dancing is my passion; I have continued to remain focused on maintaining high academic achievement and will graduate with High Honors and have been selected by the National Honor Society Buffalo Chapter.

I want to thank Heidi and Sergio for their guidance and training over these 14 years that I will take with me as I pursue a career in dance.

Neglia Note: Thank you Adrien for getting up early on Saturdays to be a teaching assistant for Miss Angela’s Creative Movement and Pre-Ballet classes.

Lara DeBoy

From which academic school are you graduating?

City Honors School (AP Scholar and an IB Diploma candidate.)

When did you start studying at Neglia?

I started when I was 5 years old.

What are your post-high school plans and goals?

Drexel University in Philadelphia, hopefully for fashion design.

What is your fondest Neglia memory?

I’m not exactly sure, I have so many. Maybe dancing with Olivia T, or prom-posing to Adrien, or staying late at the studio to learn the bird dance. Laughing with the girls in the studio after someone said something stupid or gossiping in our dressing rooms at Shea’s. I don’t think that I could choose a favorite memory if I tried.

What will you miss most about Neglia?

The people. I will always miss seeing my friends, Sergio and Heidi. It feels like they have been huge part of childhood and everyday life. Neglia is my second home. I spent more time there than at school. Heidi and Sergio taught me to be confident and to keep pushing myself no matter what. I am so thankful for them and will always cherish the memories I have dancing with them.

Will dance continue to be part of your life after graduation?

Dance will always be there but I doubt will have the chance to dance at the same level and rigor as I am now. I do not intend to pursue a career in ballet.

What was your favorite piece/role to perform at Neglia?

Probably the paquita variation I did last year. I’ve really enjoyed all the pieces that I had a chance to learn but the support and experience I gained from learning that variation was amazing. Plus, I absolutely loved the music for that variation.

Neglia Note: Thank you Lara for being an excellent senior intern. In addition to her dance abilities, Lara is a talented visual artist. We'll always remember her sketching during down-time at the studio or rehearsals. Here are a few of her creations:

Amirah Muhammad

From which academic school are you graduating?

I will be graduating as a homeschooled senior. I have been homeschooled since pre-k.

When did you start studying at Neglia?

I started studying at Neglia Conservatory 3 years ago in 2016. I was 14 years old.

What, generally, are your post-high school plans and goals?

My post high school plans are to continue my dance training and to gain more performing experience.

What is your fondest Neglia memory?

My fondest Neglia memory was my first year dancing in Neglia Ballet’s Nutcracker. It was an amazing experience to be casted in the Corps De Ballet (Snow Scene and Waltz of the Flowers), and have the opportunity to dance in such a large theater setting at the Sheas Performing Arts Center.

What will you miss most about Neglia?

I’m definitely going to miss the great learning atmosphere at Neglia. Sergio and Heidi always kept a great balance of hard work and dedication, but also the joy and happiness that dancing gives us. No matter what career paths we aspire to go down. I am grateful to have learned and gained so much from my training at Neglia.

Will dance continue to be part of your life after graduation?

Yes! Dance will always be a special part of my life and I am learning so much from all of my dance experiences.

What was your favorite piece/role to perform at Neglia?

My favorite role to perform at Neglia was a flower in the Waltz of the Flowers in the Nutcracker. I also really enjoyed performing in Baba Yaga for the on-school time performance.

List any programs to which you've received acceptance and the program/career path you plan to pursue:

I have been accepted to and received a full merit scholarship to the Ailey School Professional Division of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, where I will attend in the fall. I hope to continue on in my pursuit of becoming a professional dancer with a professional dance company.

Other non-ballet extracurriculars/achievements:

Besides dancing, I have been studying the violin since I age 3 and now perform professionally! I am grateful to have earned scholarships, awards, and opportunities to travel to such cities as NYC, Chicago, and Washington D.C. I had the opportunity to perform with the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra at age 7 and I also served as the concertmaster for the Greater Buffalo Youth String Orchestra.

Neglia Note: We'll always remember Amirah's beautiful smile as she entered the Conservatory every day. She carried her grace with her into class and on stage.

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