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#MeetTheArtist | Meet Emily Runkle

Born in Baltimore, MD, Emily Runkle first began studying ballet at Ballet with Cindee Velle, intensively studying with Caryl Maxwell. In high school she attended The Rock School for Dance Education in Philadelphia and received coaching by former dancers of major companies from around the world. Emily choreographs for both contemporary and classical companies and schools and has taught at Misako Ballet School, EMC Studios and Baltimore Ballet, as well as directed the ballet program at Project C studios for four years. In 2021, Emily founded the Ballet Embody Academy to cultivate a conservatory-quality training program for pre-professional ballet dancers. Her choreography has been showcased across the state of Maryland. Since 2019 she has choreographed three original evening length programs for Ballet Embody and is currently working on the 2021 world premiere of Ballet Embody's newest interpretation of a great classic, The Maryland Nutcracker, along with an original full length story ballet set to premiere May of 2022. Click here to view Emily's full bio.

Emily is founding co-director, artistic director, and company dancer with Ballet Embody.

Astrological Sign


Emily (left) and Amanda (right) pictured by Francisco Jauregui

Favorite Food

Bagels and cream cheese

Favorite Color


Favorite Book

The Lord of the Rings Trilogy or Harry Potter series

Favorite Movie

The Empire Strikes Back

Inspirational Quote

When I was a teenager my dad told me that no matter what I chose to do with my life/career as long I did it whole heartedly, he would support me. He said "even if you want to flip burgers at McDonalds, I would be happy for you, as long as your PASSION was flipping burgers and you were the best burger flipper you could be." I try to apply that passion-chasing-fire to everything I do.

Favorite Music/Artist/Band/Musical Genre

Twenty One Pilots (what? me?) and Sam Cooke

Favorite Place to Be

My parents farm in West Virginia

If you were a dinosaur, which dinosaur would you be?

I like Spike from Land Before Time but my boyfriend says I'm Ducky.

Do you have any pets? If so, tell us about it/them!

I have an Amstaff named Apollo and he is the strangest, worst, most dramatic dog ever, but I love him.

What genre of dance is your favorite? Why?

I guess it better be ballet! Ha ha. (because ballet allows you to deeply feel and express feelings that I don't find possible in any other aspect of life).

What is your favorite full length ballet/variation/performance? Why?

My favorite ballet is Balanchine's Jewels, because the choreography is just brilliant and so grand in the finale. But I also like this ballet called Annabel Lee......

Why do you dance?

It's pretty fun.

If you wear pointe shoes, what kind do you wear? If not pointe shoes, what kind of flat shoes do you prefer?

I wear old USA made Gayors that I have to find on the black market of pointe shoes.

What other jobs/activities/talents/passions do you pursue?

I like to hike! Also my boyfriend and I like throwing parties and get-together/BBQs with friends, because we really like hosting people and cooking for others. I like when we get started early and then I'm in bed by 10! ;)

What are you looking forward to this season with Ballet Embody?

Seeing this Nutcracker idea I have had for years come to life!

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