Stella Abrera of South Pasadena, California, began her dance studies with Philip and Charles Fuller and Cynthia Young at Le Studio in Pasadena. She continued her studies with Lorna Diamond and Patricia Hoffman at the West Coast Ballet Theater in San Diego. She also spent three years studying the Royal Academy of Dance method with Joan and Monica Halliday at the Halliday Dance Arts Centre in Sydney, Australia.
After receiving the Gold Medal at the Royal Academy of Dance Adeline Genée Awards in London in 1995, Abrera joined the American Ballet Theater as a member of the corps de ballet in 1996. In 2001 she was appointed a Soloist and in August 2015 she was promoted to Principal Dancer.
Her repertoire with the ABT includes the Girl (Afternoon of a Faun); Calliope (Apollo);Gamzatti (La Bayadère); Ballerina (The Bright Stream); Cinderella and the Fairy Godmother (Frederick Ashton's Cinderella); Cinderella (James Kudelka's Cinderella); Aurora (Coppélia);Gulnare (Le Corsaire); Chloe (Daphnis and Chloe);Woman in White (Diversion of Angels); Mercedes and the Dryad Queen (Don Quixote); Hermia (The Dream); the first passerby (Fancy Free); Lise (La fille mal gardée; the lead Maiden (Firebird); Giselle and Myrta (Giselle), Queen of Shemakhan (The Golden Cockerel); Manon (Lady of the Camellias); Lescaut's Mistress (Manon); Katia (A Month in the Country); His Friend's Wife (The Moor's Pavane); Sugar Plum Fairy and the Snow Queen (Kevin McKenzie's The Nutcracker); Clara the Princess (Alexei Ratmansky's The Nutcracker); Emilia (Othello); Ballerina (Petrouchka); Older Sister (Pillar of Fire); Henrietta (Raymonda); Lady Capulet (Romeo and Juliet); Princess Aurora and the Lilac Fairy and Princess Florine (The Sleeping Beauty), and the pas de trois (Swan Lake).
Abrera has also performed leading roles in Bach Partita, Ballet Imperial, Birthday Offering, The Brahms-Haydn Variations, C. to C. (Close to Chuck), Everything Doesn't Happen at Once, Her Notes, Jabula, The Leaves Are Fading, Meadow, Monotones I, Les Sylphides, Symphonic Variations, Symphony #9, Symphony in C, Thirteen Diversions, among other works.
Abrera has been a guest artist with the Australian Ballet, Royal New Zealand Ballet, and Ballet Philippines.