What a week it’s been! Yesterday, the 20 Prix de Lausanne finalists took the stage for a final chance to win scholarships and apprentice contracts with some of the world’s major ballet institutions. Throughout the week, I’ve had the privilege of observing all 67 talented dancers in classes and onstage, and there’s no way I would have been able to make a decision. The talent and determination from these budding young artists is unprecedented. To quote Hamburg Ballet artistic director John Neumeier, who received a Lifetime Achievement Award at last night's awards ceremony, “There are no firsts or seconds in human beings.”
Nevertheless, eight dancers won a scholarship to enter one of the 68 Prix de Lausanne partner schools and companies of their choice.
They are, in order of ranking:
- Michele Esposito, 17, Italy
2. Marina Fernandes de Costa Duarte, 17, Brazil
3. Taisuke Nakao, 17, Japan
4. Koyo Yamamoto, 15, Japan
5. Lauren Hunter, 15, USA
6. Stanislaw Wegrzyn, 18, Poland
7. Diana Georgia Ionescu, 16, Romania
8. Sunu Lim, 17, South Korea
In addition, four other awards were given out:
Contemporary Dance Prize: Michele Esposito, Italy
Audience Favorite Award: Marina Fernandes de Costa Duarte, Brazil
Rudolf Nureyev Foundation Artistic Award: Denilson Almeida, 16, Brazil
Best Swiss Candidate Prize: Michele Esposito of Italy (a student at Tanz Akademie Zurich, in Switzerland)
Over the next month, the winners will work with the Prix de Lausanne to determine which school or company will be the best fit, with their decisions listed on the website.
The Prix's networking forum allows non-finalists, as well as those finalists who didn't receive a scholarship, to be considered by partner schools' teachers and directors. Those results will also be posted to the website later in the year. Congratulations to all!