Each year, the Princess Grace Foundation honors an extraordinary group of artists. This year, ballet got a major nod. Six of the eight winners in the dance performance and choreography category are ballet-related. (The other two are Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Jacquelin Harris and downtown dance-theater choreographer Raja Feather Kelly.) While you already know some of these names, we're excited to follow the careers of newcomers, like current Juilliard dance major Mikaela Kelly. Past Princess Grace Award winners include the likes of Carlos Acosta, Gillian Murphy and Tiler Peck, so they're in exceptional company.
Here's a breakdown of the awardees from the ballet world. Congrats!
Mikaela Kelly (Dance Scholarship): Currently in her fourth year at The Juilliard School, the dance major has already performed at hallowed venues like the Metropolitan Opera House and the Kennedy Center. Before enrolling in college, she was a student at the American Ballet Theatre's Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School.
Miriam Miller (Dance Fellowship, Chris Hellman Dance Award): Though she only joined New York City Ballet's corps in January 2016, the young artist has already danced several featured roles, like Titania in Balanchine's A Midsummer Night's Dream and the Siren in his Prodigal Son.
The stunning Miriam Miller. Photo by Lucas Chilczuk for Dance Spirit
Gian Carlo Perez (Dance Fellowship): The Washington Ballet company member began his career at the prestigious National Ballet of Cuba.
Lyvan Verdecia (Dance Fellowship): The former National Ballet of Cuba dancer is now wowing audiences as a member of Ballet Hispanico.
Bryan Arias (Choreography Fellowship): Full of contemporary cool, Arias performed with Nederlands Dans Theater, Crystal Pite's Kidd Pivot and Complexions Contemporary Ballet before dedicating himself to dancemaking. This coming season, his choreography will be on display at Charlotte Ballet, where he also danced.
Gemma Bond (Choreography Fellowship): The American Ballet Theatre corps members pulls double duty as a choreographer, and she's been increasingly in demand. This spring, she was commissioned by Atlanta Ballet. This week, her own troupe, Gemma Bond Dance, is performing a trio of works at the Joyce Ballet Festival. And she's been tapped to create a new piece for The Washington Ballet in spring of 2018.
PGA winner Gemma Bond rehearsing Cassandra Trenary. Photo by Jim Lafferty.
For the complete list of all the Princess Grace Award winners, click here.