09/10 Scholarship Recipients
Vannie Sheiry Memorial Scholarship - Nicholas Duran (MFA '11)
Awarded in recognition of outstanding performance
Nick Duran at Mt. Tremper Arts
Moe Family Dance Award - Alyssa Schoeneman (BFA '10)
Awarded to a student with potential for unique contributions to the profession
"I am pursuing my Master’s of Science in news-editorial journalism at the University of Illinois because I have an undying passion for arts advocacy, specifically in the dance field. In a society that underfunds and undervalues the fine arts there is a great need for people who can communicate clearly about the importance of dance performance and dance education. I have hopes that my writing will help to grow the audience for dance by making it more widely
accessible and understandable across meridians. The Moe Family Dance Scholarship is helping to fund my graduate education during the 2010-2011 school year".
Wanda M. Nettl Prize for Student Choreography - Grace Courvoisier (BFA '11)
Awarded in recognition of outstanding choreography
"For the summer of 2010, I used the generous scholarship money to travel to New York City, NY to attend the MELT Festival for two weeks. I worked with choreographers and artists such as Shelley Senter, Gwen Welliver, Beth Goren, Neil Greenberg, and Tere O'Connor. The space was absolutely breath taking, despite the uncontrollable heat. We danced in St. Mark's Church located on 10th St. and 2nd Ave. with large pillars, vaulted ceilings, and stained glass decor.
My Alexander Training with Senter was by far the most informative anatomically; l began to think of my jaw as an appendage of my skull, and my torso became longer, and was heightened. Greenberg, and O'Connor, for whom I had choroegraphic process class with, both treated me as a choreographer rather than a dancer trying to choreograph...and that respect and trust was important to me, and helped me grow. In a journal I kept throughout my experience in New York during Movement Research's MELT Festival I wrote, "Relax into a coma of sun, and feel vibrations of warmth. An unspeakable joy accompanies the process of being touched by another of your kind. We are like sifting atoms; a community of flesh eating hungry artists..."
Thank you for the beautiful scholarship! I met dancers and artists in the heart and history of New York City. My collaboration was an opportunity I will never forget".
MELT Festival/Photo by: Grace Courvosier
Patricia Knowles Graduate Travel Award - Betsy Brandt-Hartland (MFA '12)
Awarded to an MFA candidate to be used for travel and study that deepens his her artistic life
"Art Basel Miami Beach, the domestic sister event of Art Basel in Switzerland, is one of the most important contemporary art shows in the United States. Four days of meticulously-curated exhibitions and special events attract artists, gallerists, institutional curators, scholars, and socialites from around the world. In the last few years, a number of scholars have noted a growing interest in performance art, both in Miami and around the world. Current economic conditions, object-fatigue, and the homogenizing effects of globalization have all been proposed as possible contributors to this acceleration of interest. A marked expansion of performance-based work at contemporary visual arts institutions in the past decade not only reflects this trend, but presents a growing demand for scholars and students who are versed in the history of both visual art and dance traditions. Art Basel Miami Beach 2010 will incorporate an unprecedented amounted of performance-based work. Similar art shows and festivals around the world have incorporated satellite programs on dance and theater in recent years. With this expectation in mind, I will travel to this year’s show, December 2-5, 2010, to do first-hand research about how performance-based artistic practices are being absorbed, assimilated, or rejected by the artists, curators, and collectors. I will have an opportunity to meet and speak with international art leaders, as well as a chance to read the “scene” first-hand and evaluate the possible sources and future potential of performance-based work in the institutionalized art world. I will write a paper on my observations and corresponding analysis, which will become a significant contributing factor to the ultimate design of a curricular offering in contemporary art and dance theory for Fall 2011".
Lisa Carducci Memorial Scholarship - Amanda Gross (BFA '11)
Awarded to an outstanding student for summer study
"The summer of 2010 was simply unforgettable. As the recipient of the Lisa Carducci Award I was very blessed and able to study and volunteer in India. I worked the previous year to plan and leave the trip for s individuals through the campus organization International Impact. For the month of June, the six of us taught English and math in the slums of Northern Delhi. Inthe slums, the people are so generous even though they have nothing to give. The children were so beautiful, eager, strong, and thankful. I was fortunate enough to learn from the Indian people and their culture. I lived in their country, learned their ways, slept in their houses, tried their spices, and fell in love with their children. My work in India will be the basis of my thesis research. I believe that it is important for young artists to not only travel but to be aware of the world in which they are living. Forgotten groups of people are struggling through famine, ware, natural disaster, and disease. We are responsible for giving them a voice and bridging the gap between the people. It is my mission to use the power between activism and the arts for the greater good. With the help of my summer scholarship I was able to scratch the surface of this dream".
Amanda Gross in Delhi, India
Mary Elizabeth Hamstrom Award - William Schneider (MFA '10)
Awarded to an MFA candidate for summer study
Senior Magnolia Award - Courtney Bradley (BFA '10)
Awarded to the BFA senior who has schown the most growth and development throughout his/her four years
Scholarships for Dance Projects
Awarded to support dance research and/or study over the course of the summer for BFA and MFA studentts seeking to further their creative, performance, and/or scholarly work. The fund will support a diverse range of aesthetics within projects that demonstrate rigorous inquiry, individual voice, and curiosity.
Stephanie Azzaretto (BFA '10)
Nibia Pastrana Santiago (MFA '11)
"As a recipient of a Dance at Illinois scholarship for summer study, I participated in an artist’s residency at Mt. Tremper Arts in New York’s Catskill Mountains. There I commenced my thesis research with my collaborator and peer, Nibia Pastrana Santiago, which will result with a performance in Studio Dance I at the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts this spring. This was my first time as an artist in residency and I have never before had such a rich and immersive experience with my own creative process".
-Nicholas Duran (MFA '11)
"This summer I had the opportunity to take the intensive that Thodos Dance Chicago hosts. After weeks without dancing, coming to this program was spectacular. Each day began at 9:30 with ballet then a modern technique. After these classes we would enjoy lunch with speakers from the Chicago dance scene including Stephanie Martinez, Micheal Anderson, and Margi Cole. Following these discussions we would head back to the studio to learn pieces from the company repertory. I learned Fosse's Mexican Breakfast, Anasa, and Awakening - three very individual and unique pieces that each encompassed a different way of movement. The day closed out with improvisation, composition, and body wellness. I attended this workshop three years ago, however this time around it was a very different experience. Within my own movement I could feel a difference in how I use my body within choreography. The program helped show me more of a focus on what I value aesthetically and it energized me for the school year to begin".
-Mary Albano (BFA '13)
"This summer I attended all 5 weeks of MELT at Movement Research in New York City. MELT is a series of workshops during which Irene Dowd, Beth Goren, Neil Greenberg, Lance Gries, K.J. Holmes, Ishmael Houston-Jones, Barbara Mahler, Yvonne Meier, Jennifer Monson, Jeremy Nelson, Jennifer Nugent, Tere O'Connor, Shelley Senter with Lower Left, Vicky Shick, Donna Uchizono, and Gwen Welliver each taught a week long class. MELT was a wave of somatic, technical, and choreographic information that crashed over me leaving me a very different artist and dancer. Exposure to a multitude of artists and teachers, each with a unique viewpoint, has broadened my knowledge of the body anatomically, my body experientially, and choreographic principals and ideas. I was inspired everyday of MELT. I learned how to be inside my body and inside my dance fully with presence and intellect. I connected and integrated my body not only to and with itself but to and with other bodies, space, physical objects, and architecture. I feel as if blinders have been lifted and now I see what a broad wide world dance is technically and choreographically. I became aware of technical agendas that I had never know about, but now see as essential. Similarly, choreographically, I was exposed to knew ways of approaching dance making that I am extremely excited to utilize in future project. I feel like MELT transformed me from a student into an artist. I have the tools and knowledge to develop my own technical practice and choreographic assignments. I am still a student and see how essential teachers are, but now I don't feel the urgency and reliance that I once felt. I feel very much in control of my body and my art. I am extremely grateful for the scholarship from the dance department without which I would not have been able to attend MELT and grow and mature as an artist and a person".
-Laura Brosch (BFA '12)
MELT Festival/Photo by Laura Brosch
"This summer, I had the amazing opportunity to travel to California and attend a four-week intensive at the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance. The program was the most rigorous of any intensive I’d ever attended, and I feel like I was able to explore so much over the course of the four weeks. I was able to work on technique in daily ballet, modern, and yoga classes, and collaborating with classmates and faculty to create three new works pushed me creatively as a creator and performer. What I most appreciated about the program was its warm, fostering environment; while other intensives I’ve attended have seemed highly competitive, I felt that the faculty at SFCD provided an atmosphere that was loving and supportive of all of its students and their artistic and technical growth. Having the chance to explore the eclectic city of San Francisco in my few days off made the experience even more special. From seeing the Pride Parade and frequenting the local farmers market to visiting the touristy Fisherman’s Wharf and viewing performances by innovative local dance companies, I found the city’s sights and sounds to be fresh and truly inspiring. Thank you to Dance at Illinois for making this trip possible!"
-Andrea Chim (BFA '13)
"This summer, I attended Bates Dance Festival in Lewiston, Maine. I was there for three weeks and had the opportunity to attend classes from some amazing artists. These artists included Omar Carrum, Natalie Desch, Michael Foley, Ashley James, Shonach Mirk-Robles, and Eddie Taketa. I was also fortunate enough to attend many shows offered and work with some dancers from across the country. My choreography was presented at the Young Choreographers New Works Showcase where Michael Foley and Doug Varone were adjudicators. They gave me amazing feedback and encouraged me to continue with the project that I had begun. The scholarship that I received from the Dance Department was allocated to some of my travel expenses".
-Wedee Kao (BFA "11)
"After spending the summer dedicating myself to a daily yoga practice at Amara Yoga and Arts, I have found a sense of length that is completely new to my body. Yoga has allowed me to increase my knowledge and awareness of my own body that has brought increased intricacy and ease to my dancing. In addition to helping me find a calm strength in my dancing, yoga has helped me find a quieter mind. I plan on continuing my yoga study through a yoga teacher certificiation course second semester".
-Cara Newman (BFA '11)