• Dance St. Louis grants Career Awards
    Dance Winners

    Dance St. Louis’ 2013 Dance Career Award Winners: Daphne Pastard,Ta'Shayla Montgomery, Dontel Pattman, Camaron Ballard, Jordan Davis


    Posted: Thursday, March 21, 2013 12:05 am
    Dance St. Louis recently announced the winners of its 2013 Dance Career Awards.  This year’s winners include four students from University City High School and one student from Central Visual and Performing Arts High School.

    The award winners are:

    ·         Camaron Ballard, age 17, University City; senior at University City High School

    ·         Jordan Davis, age 17, University City; senior at University City High School

    ·         Daphne Pastard, age 18, University City; senior at University City High School

    ·         Dontel Pattman, age 18, University City; senior at University City High School

    ·         Ta’Shayla Montgomery, age 17, South St. Louis; senior at Central Visual and Performing Arts High School
    Recipients of the Dance Career Award are offered guidance and support towards more intensive dance training and ultimately towards careers in the dance world. Awardees are also given assistance with preparing for auditions, deciding on whether or which college to pursue, getting letters of recommendations and making connections in the professional dance world.
    Dance St. Louis may also contribute financially and help seek support for award winners from dance schools, colleges and professional dance companies.
    “The program is one of the most exciting and rewarding things we do,” said Dance St. Louis Artistic and Executive Director Michael Uthoff.
    “Nothing is more fulfilling than seeing these talented young people get an opportunity they would otherwise not have. Furthermore, when traveling around the country I encounter many of them fulfilling their dreams at different schools.”
    The winners of the Dance Career Awards are selected from hundreds of students participating in Dance St. Louis’ Monsanto Dance Education Residency Program. Every season Dance St. Louis conducts two intensive three-week education programs in urban schools.
    Dance St. Louis flies in two teaching artists from the season’s performing companies to work with middle and high school students of dance at: Grand Center Arts Academy, Central Visual and Performing Arts High School, University City High School, Normandy High School, McKinley Classical Leadership Academy, and Carr Lane Visual and Performing Arts Middle School.
    The program allows for the students to work with dancers from some of the best dance companies in the world. For students, many from underserved areas, it is their first encounter with a professional dancer and the classes often create life-changing experiences. As part of the program, students receive free tickets to the Young People’s Performance or Saturday matinee public performance. Dance St. Louis also develops a cross-curricular teaching guide in collaboration with the teaching artists of the visiting companies.
    This year’s five award-winning students took part in three-week residences taught by the notable modern dance company Pilobolus in November 2012. The students also participated in a three-week “Diversity in Dance” residency in January 2013 with teaching artists from United Artist Initiative, a dance company that brings hip hop dancers together with modern and ballet dancers.

    St. Louis established the Dance Career Awards in 2011 to identify and honor local students who are exceptionally motivated and talented in dance and show potential for a professional dance career.

    The story can be accessed here.