Pennsylvania Ballet's Sydney Dolan in rehearsal for The Nutcracker. Photo by Arian Molina Soca, Courtesy PAB.

Meet the 2018 Princess Grace Award Winners

Each year, the Princess Grace Foundation, honoring the legacy of Princess Grace Kelly of Monaco, offers awards to distinguished artists spanning the fields of theater, film and, of course, dance. The 2018 winners were just announced and include nine dancers and choreographers, five of whom—Sydney Dolan, Catherine Hurlin, David Adrian Freeland, Dana Genshaft and Claudia Schreier—hail from the ballet world. In addition to this list, choreographer Kyle Abraham received a Statue Award, recognizing his success since winning the Princess Grace Award in 2010. We can't wait to see Abraham's first-ever work for a ballet company at New York City Ballet's fashion gala this fall.

We've included more info on the ballet-affiliated winners below. Dance awards outside of the ballet realm go to Juilliard School student Matthew Gilmore, New York University student Aliza Russell, Abraham.in.Motion dancer Marcella Lewis and Gibney Dance Company member Shamel Pitts. You can read more about all of the awardees here.


Sydney Dolan: Dance Fellowship 2018, Chris Hellman Dance Award

Sydney Dolan in Balanchine's "Rubies." Photo by Arian Molina Soca, Courtesy PAB.

Sydney Dolan is a corps de ballet dancer with Pennsylvania Ballet. She's steadily climbed the company ranks since joining PBII in 2016. Though the 2018/2019 season is her first in the corps, she's already danced the Pas de Trois in Angel Corella's Swan Lake, the Lilac Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty, Dew Drop in George Balanchine's The Nutcracker and the Tall Girl in Balanchine's "Rubies."

Catherine Hurlin: Dance Fellowship 2018, Barbara & John Lehman Dance Award

Catherine Hurlin (center) with Dunan Lyle and Roman Zhurbin in Alexei Ratmansky's Whipped Cream. Photo by Doug Gifford, Courtesy ABT.

This has been a big summer for American Ballet Theatre's Catherline Hurlin; last month, she was promoted to soloist. Since joining ABT as an apprentice in 2013, Hurlin has shone in a number of featured roles including Young Clara in Alexei Ratmansky's The Nutcracker and the hilarious Mademoiselle Marianne Chartreuse in Ratmansky's Whipped Cream—both of which she originated.

David Adrian Freeland: Dance Fellowship 2018

David Adrian Freeland with Jacquelin Harris in Katarzyna Skarpetowska's Cuore Sott'olio for Ailey II. Photo by Eduardo Patino, Courtesy AAADT.

L.A. Dance Project member David Adrian Freeland danced with The Metropolitan Opera and Missouri Ballet Theatre before joining the California-based contemporary company in 2016. While with L.A. Dance Project he's danced in works by founder Benjamin Millepied and Justin Peck as well as modern classics by Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham and many others.

Dana Genshaft: Choreography Fellowship 2018

Dana Genshaft in San Francisco Ballet's production of Alexei Ratmansky's Foreign Lands. Photo by Erik Tomasson, Courtesy SFB.

Former San Francisco Ballet soloist Dana Genshaft began choreographing in 2014, creating work for companies such as the American Ballet Theatre Studio Company and SFDanceworks as well as movement for dance films and music videos. Her work often tends towards the interdisciplinary: Most recently she partnered with musician Thomas Lauderdale to develop a ballet based on a 1929 children's novel. She has been commissioned to create for The Washington Ballet's spring 2019 season.

Claudia Schreier: Choreography Fellowship 2018

Claudia Schreier in rehearsal with students at Ballet Academy East. Photo by Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy Schreier.

Claudia Schreier earned her B.A. from Harvard University before making a name for herself as a choreographer. She's been commissioned to make work for the Vail Dance Festival, Joffrey Winning Works, the American Ballet Theatre Studio Company, Dance Theatre of Harlem and more. In 2017 her troupe, Claudia Schreier & Company, made its Joyce Theater Debut. You can follow her experience in this documentary.

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James Barkley, Courtesy Dance for Change

Take Class From Celebrated Black Dancers and Raise Money for the NAACP Through Dance for Change

Since the nationwide fight against racial inequality took center stage in May, organizations across the dance world have been looking for meaningful ways to show their support, rather than fall back on empty social media signifiers. July 10-11, Diamante Ballet Dancewear is taking action with Dance for Change, a two-day event dedicated to fundraising for the NAACP, and amplifying the voices of Black professional dancers.

Organized by Diamante Ballet Dancewear's founder, Nashville Ballet 2 dancer Isichel Perez, and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre teacher Elise Gillum, Dance for Change makes it easy to participate. Dancers need only to make a donation to the NAACP (in any amount) and email proof to diamante.ballet@gmail.com to be given online access to a full schedule of Zoom master classes taught by Black pros artists. Teachers include Ballet Memphis' George Sanders, Boston Ballet's Daniel Durrett, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre's Corey Bourbonniere, and more. "It's important that we amplify BIPOC voices during this time, and it's also important that we're conscious of where we're putting our dollars," says Bourbonniere. "Diamante is doing both with Dance for Change, and I'm honored to be in this talented group of melanated dancers."

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Vikki Sloviter

Sydney Dolan Takes Center Stage at Pennsylvania Ballet

This is Pointe's Summer 2020 cover story. You can subscribe to the magazine here, or click here to purchase this issue.

Just days before the world shuttered under the strain of the coronavirus pandemic, and the curtain came down indefinitely on dance companies everywhere, Pennsylvania Ballet soloist Sydney Dolan debuted Gamzatti in La Bayadère with captivating ease. Her jumps soared, her technique was sound, and her cheeky smile paired with exquisite port de bras was beguiling. Though she didn't know the company would soon cancel the remainder of its season, her beautiful performance acted as a kind of send-off into the unknown.

Dolan's career could be described in one word: charmed. At just 19 years old, she's flown through the ranks at PAB, debuted a long list of roles, won a Princess Grace Award and been named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch." Yet it's her challenges that have shaped not only her training but her outlook, giving her a solid foundation for becoming one of Pennsylvania Ballet's rising stars.

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Courtesy de Roos

SAB Student Founds Dancewear Nonprofit to Help Others in Need

When School of American Ballet student Alexandra de Roos was 8 years old, she placed a collection box at her dance studio for others to donate their gently used dancewear. De Roos, now 17, has since turned that single collection box into a nonprofit organization that aims to minimize economic barriers in the performing arts with free dancewear and classes.

De Roos' organization, Peace Love Leotards, has collected about $2,600 of new and gently-used dancewear and $2,000 in grants and donations since formally launching in April. Dancers or studio owners can request items through a form on the organization's website.

"I knew that dancewear was really expensive and that a lot of students might not be able to do the thing that they love because it's cost-prohibitive," de Roos said. "I really wanted to create something to allow people to have the same experience of the love and joy of dance that I've been so grateful to have."

After SAB shifted its winter term online amid the COVID-19 pandemic, de Roos decided to expand Peace Love Leotards. She reached out to dance companies, resulting in partnerships with brands including Jo+Jax, Lone Reed Designs, RubiaWear and Wear Moi.

"To have them be like 'We want to help you with this and we love this idea and what you're doing is amazing,' that was really exciting to me," she said. "It was very heartwarming."

Jordan Reed, the creator of custom dancewear brand Lone Reed Designs, said she has donated seven items to Peace Love Leotards with plans to donate more consistently every quarter. Custom leotards often retail at higher prices, but Reed, a former Houston Ballet corps member, said the one-of-a-kind clothing offers an "extra bit of confidence, which can go more than a long way in a dancer's journey of training."

Paul Plesh, a sales director for Wear Moi in the United States and Canada, said the company donated 11 leotards after finding Peace Love Leotards' mission to be "commendable." Joey Dowling-Fakhrieh, the founder and creative director of Jo+Jax, said dancewear "can make a significant impact on a student's confidence, as well as how much they enjoy the process of learning dance."

De Roos has worked to expand Peace Love Leotards, Inc. rapidly in the past few months, but she first created the organization at eight years old after participating in a mentorship program with competitors in the Miss Florida and Miss Florida's Outstanding Teen pageants. The pageants, which are part of the Miss America Organization, require competitors to have personal platforms they advocate for as titleholders. As a competition dancer, de Roos instantly thought about the cost barriers to dance when wondering what her own future platform would be.

De Roos said she and her young classmates often outgrew nearly brand-new dancewear, so she approached her studio's owner about placing a collection box at the studio.

Barbara Mizell, who owns Barbara's Centré for Dance in Florida, said she was unsurprised by de Roos' proposal. De Roos always had "such a way of pushing herself and she never forgot those around her," Mizell said. As the box filled up, she distributed the dancewear to others at the studio, local schools with dance programs, and the local YMCA.

"When they could start to see that it was providing happiness for others, then it was almost like the kids couldn't wait to donate," Mizell said.

Nearly a decade after the Miss Florida organization inspired her to launch Peace Love Leotards, de Roos is now a titleholder herself, as Miss Gainesville's Outstanding Teen 2020. Her new mission for Peace Love Leotards is applying for grants, and she has already received a $1,000 grant from the Delores Barr Weaver Legacy Fund that will be used to fund a Title 1 school class.

"The whole organization behind Peace Love Leotards is the dancers," de Roos said. "Being able to help the dancers that are in need and being able to think about the dancewear that they're going to be receiving or have received has been truly amazing."

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