Slavin Nadal Curriculum and Staff

The training at Slavin Nadal School of Ballet reflects the extensive professional background of its founders. During their 17 years directing the Ballet Austin Academy, the Slavins developed a comprehensive ballet curriculum with traditional Russian roots: The Ballet Russe and the Vaganova method. The Slavin Nadal curriculum emphasizes the beautiful art of épaulement from the earliest years of training, ensuring that this critical element of classical ballet is naturally integrated into the dancer’s movement. Additionally, the curriculum incorporates some of the best from the French, English and Danish schools, producing dancers with a refined and versatile technique.

The Founders

Eugene Slavin - founder of Slavin Nadal School of Ballet in Austin, TX
Eugene Slavin, 1935-2014
Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Mr. Slavin received his ballet training there at the Teatro Colon, where he began his professional career. In New York, he studied with Anatole Vilzak, who had been First Dancer of the Mariinsky Theatre (now the St. Petersburg-Kirov Ballet), succeeding Vaslav Nijinsky. Mr. Slavin made his American debut at Carnegie Hall and subsequently as a soloist with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet. Shortly after joining the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, where he became a Principal Dancer, he was chosen to partner the legendary ballerina Maria Tallchief in such works as the Don Quixote Pas de Deux, Swan Lake, and George Balanchine’s Ballet Imperial. Read more
Alexandra Nadal - founder of Slavin Nadal School of Ballet
Alexandra Nadal, 1943-2015
Born in the West Indies, Alexandra Nadal received her initial training in Chicago from Russian emigre Andre Commiacoff and former Sadler’s Wells Ballet (now the Royal Ballet) soloists Richard Ellis and Christine DuBoulay. In New York she continued training with some of the most influential teachers of the time, including Maria Swoboda and Leon Danielian. At age 17, she was accepted into the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo for what was to be the company’s last American tour. Read more


Joseph Nygren Cox - director of Slavin Nadal School of Ballet
Joseph Nygren Cox
Joseph Nygren Cox, Director is a native Austinite who trained for ten years and danced professionally with Eugene Slavin and Alexandra Nadal at Ballet Austin/Austin Civic Ballet. He and his wife, Kimberly Nygren Cox, have the honor of being chosen by the Slavins to succeed them as directors of the Slavin Nadal School of Ballet. Mr. Cox holds an M.F.A. in Dance from The University of Iowa as well as graduate and undergraduate certificates in Business Administration. In addition to Ballet Austin, he performed with Cincinnati Ballet, Dayton Ballet, and most notably as a principal dancer with the Louisville Ballet. ... Read more
Kimberly Nygren Cox - director of Slavin Nadal School of Ballet
Kimberly Nygren Cox
Kimberly Nygren Cox, Director comes to the Slavin Nadal School of Ballet after an extensive career as a professional dancer, teacher, and choreographer. She performed with the Milwaukee Ballet before beginning her 12-year tenure with the Louisville Ballet, where she became a Soloist. Mrs. Cox danced an eclectic repertoire ranging from purely classical to dramatic contemporary roles, and was critically acclaimed in Dance Magazine for her performances in Anthony Tudor’s Little Improvisations and Judgement of Paris. She has worked with notable artists including Elyse Borne, Donald Mahler, Sallie Wilson, Judith Fugate, Janek Schergen, Domi Reiter-Soffer, Nikolaj Hübbe, and Wendy Whelan. ... Read more


Emily Karnes - faculty member at Slavin Nadal School of Ballet
Emily Karnes
Emily Karnes is an accomplished artist and teacher with significant education and experience in dance. She received her early classical ballet training with Rebecca Miller Stalcup, Dennis Poole, Mark Bush, Melinda Tobian, and Laura Hood Babcock, at Arkansas Academy of Dance. She has also attended intensive programs at the Joffrey Ballet and with Doug Varone and Dancers. Ms. Karnes holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, where she studied closely with Slavin-Nadal School of Ballet Director, Joseph Cox, as well as Nancy Happel, Rhythm McCarthy, Stephanie Thibeault, and Stephen Stone. ... Read more