The Brandon Ballet, a nonprofit, pre-professional ballet company is pleased to announce the addition of two fabulously talented dancers and educators to its staff. Octavio Martin has joined the Brandon Ballet as artistic director, and his wife, Yaima Franco, has joined as ballet mistress.
Both Marin and Franco come to the Brandon Ballet from the Sarasota Ballet and bring years of experience and talent with them.
Alice Holden Bock, executive director of the Brandon Ballet, said, “We just became an arts institution with the addition of this world class artist named Octavio Martin. As a choreography known for being innovative and now having him with us as an innovative choreographer, with his superior training and passionate devotion to the art of dance, Brandon Ballet will enrich the lives of the people of Tampa Bay under his leadership.”
Both Martin and Franco are originally from Cuba and danced with the National Ballet of Cuba. They have performed all over the world. In 2005, they defected from Cuba and they received political asylum. They eventually made their way to Sarasota, where they danced with the Sarasota Ballet for several years. They became U.S. citizens in 2011.
Now, they will share their immense talent and experience with the greater Brandon community. Holden Bock said, “We are so excited to have Martin here. Brandon and the entire Tampa Bay community have a shining new star.”
The Brandon Ballet was formed in 1993 and is dedicated to developing and promoting opportunities for aspiring young dancers. The Brandon Ballet provides Brandon and the surrounding communities with an education in the art of dance. The Brandon Ballet serves the community through performances held at public facilities. The next public performance will be The Nutcracker held annually in December.
For more information on, please visit or call 684-4282. The Brandon Ballet is located at 161 E. Bloomingdale Ave. in Brandon.

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