Dancers Receive Over $50,000 In Scholarships

August 9, 2011

The National Dance Foundation of Bermuda today [Aug.9] announced the eight recipients of scholarships and bursaries for the 2011-2012 academic year. The awards represent a total of $50,500 in funding.

The scholarships and bursaries are for study at accredited institutions in the U.S., England and Scotland and have been awarded following a rigourous application process overseen by the National Dance Foundation’s Scholarship Committee which is chaired by Mrs. Sallie Singleton.

At a press conference at the Bermuda High School for Girls, Foundation Chairman Don Kramer presented the students with their awards. In congratulating the students, Mr. Kramer paid tribute to their broad range of interests and skills as well as their contributions to the community. “We often cite the influence dance has on the positive development of young people,” said Mr. Kramer. “

These eight talented young men and women are shining examples of how dance instills confidence, discipline and commitment. Their accomplishments are impressive and I know I speak for all of my fellow Board and Honourary Board members in wishing them every success as they pursue their studies overseas.”

Courtney Lopes, Patricia Calnan Commemorative Award, valued at $15,000 and sponsored by PartnerRe and Family & Friends of Patricia Calnan

Courtney is entering her final year in the Bachelor of Fine Arts Dance programme at the Conservatory of Dance at State University of New York’s Purchase College. During the past academic year, Courtney was chosen to study abroad for her first semester at the Taipei National University of the Arts in Taiwan.

In addition to her ballet and modern technique classes, Courtney also studied Kung Fu, Chinese Opera, Yoga, Chinese fan dancing and other Asian-inspired movement styles. Courtney also traveled to Mexico with other dance students from New York to study with modern dance companies and to perform and teach at orphanages.

During the 2010-2011 year, Courtney was chosen to perform a lead role in Wallie Wolfgruber’s piece at the Purchase Conservatory School of Dance spring concert, receiving praise for her fluidity, intelligence and artistry.

Courtney received her formative training at the In Motion School of Dance and the North Carolina School of the Arts. She has been a regular recipient of funding from the National Dance Foundation, having received the L. John Profit Commemorative Award in 2008- 2009, the Patricia Calnan Commemorative Award in 2009- 2010 and a bursary in 2010.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Anna Clifford, the Madame Ana Roje Commemorative Award, sponsored by the Montpelier Re Foundation, valued at $7,500

Anna is entering the final year of a three-year Bachelor of Arts Modern Ballet degree programme at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (RSAMD) in Glasgow, Scotland.

Anna’s teachers have been impressed with her mature and focused approach to her classes, noting that she has made good progress technically, gaining in both strength and understanding of the demands of ballet and contemporary technique.

In the fall of 2010, Anna performed with other members of her class in the closing ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Delhi, India. Anna has worked on several choreography projects this

past year including a nine minute piece titled ‘fRagmEnteD’ which was received enthusiastically by audiences. She was honoured to be asked to perform it again for the end of year school presentation in June.

Anna received her formative training at the Bermuda School of Russian Ballet and In Motion School of Dance in Bermuda. She was awarded the L. John Profit Commemorative Award in 2009 – 2010 and the Madame Ana Roje Commemorative Award in 2010-2011.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Fredrika Hill, the L. John Profit Commemorative Award, valued at $7,500 and sponsored by BF&M Insurance

Later this month, Fredrika will enter her first year of the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the prestigious Boston Conservatory for the Arts in Boston. A graduate of The Berkeley Institute, Fredrika was an honours student at Berkeley who also participated in the Center for Talented Youth programmes at Johns Hopkins University.

In addition to her academic and performing arts accomplishments, Fredrika was Team Captain of Berkeley’s volleyball team and has volunteered for the past several years at the Bermuda Aquarium and Zoo.

Fredrika has been accepted into the National Dance Foundation’s DanceBermuda summer intensive programme since its inception in 2005 and received the Catherine Zeta Jones Award for attendance at the 2009 and 2010 intensives. Fredrika has been a student at the Somerset School of Dancing since the age of four and while there was awarded the Patricia Hagen Scholarship.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Rikkai Scott, The Georgine Mary Russell Hill Scholarship, valued at $7,500 and sponsored by The Montpelier Re Foundation

Rikkai is entering his final year at the London Contemporary Dance School (The Place) in London where he has participated in a rigourous curriculum that has included multiple performance opportunities. Rikkai has impressed his teachers with his determination as well as his improvement in ballet and contemporary technique.

This year, Rikkai collaborated with other students in choreographing a piece called “Plata O Plomo” for their second year workshop. This piece was selected to be performed in a larger theatre, marking the beginning of a keen interest in choreography for Rikkai.

Rikkai received his formative training at United Dance Productions in Bermuda. He was the recipient of The Georgine Mary Russell Hill Scholarship in 2009-2010 and in 2010-2011.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Bursary recipient Malachi Simmons, sponsored by Platinum Underwriters:

A bursary has been awarded to Malachi Simmons who is entering his first year at Edge Hill University in England to study for a Bachelor of Arts degree in visual theatre. Malachi, who is well-known for his acting and dancing ability, also teaches young males hip-hop at United Dance Productions and has started a small hip-hop dance troupe, “M.A.D”.

He is currently working for YouthNet as an onsite coordinator and administrator and is one of the heads of the Peace Builder Committee who are working towards creating peace and unity amongst Bermuda’s future leaders. Malachi has trained with both United Dance Productions and In Motion School of Dance.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Bursary Recipient Alexis Richens, sponsored by The Argo Foundation:

A bursary has been awarded to Alexis Richens who will be entering her first year of a four year Bachelor of Arts degree in Dance with a Business Major at Jacksonville University, Florida. With economics and mathematics as her strong subjects, Alexis has recently added macroeconomics to her course load as she feels the subject will help her achieve her goal of opening a dance school when she returns to Bermuda. Alexis is a student at The Jackson School of Performing Arts where she also volunteers as a teacher’s assistant. She has been participating in the DanceBermuda summer intensive since its inception and is a past recipient of a Catherine Zeta Jones scholarship.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Bursary Recipient Tsilala Graham-Haynes, sponsored by The Argo Foundation:

A bursary has been awarded to Tsilala Graham-Haynes who is entering her second year of study in musical theatre at the highly competitive Carnegie Mellon University’s School of Drama. Tsilala, an excellent student, is hoping to dance on Broadway when she graduates. Tsilala trained with United Dance Productions from the age of 6 to 15. She has been involved in many community service activities both in Bermuda and overseas.

Dance Bermuda Scholarships 2011

Bursary Recipient Karissa Roberts, sponsored by the National Dance Foundation of Bermuda:

A bursary has been awarded to Karissa Roberts who has been accepted for a Masters Degree at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. A talented young dancer and recipient of several previous awards from the National Dance Foundation, Karissa has decided to expand her knowledge by studying athletic training with the Department of Kinesiology with special interest in dance injuries. Karissa studied with In Motion School of Dance for over ten years and was a senior member of their Concepts in Motion Dance Company.

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Comments (6)

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  1. Impressive says:

    These pictures are beautiful! And the write-ups are just as impressive. Congrats to you all.

  2. LuvGoodNews says:

    This article pleases me greatly! I’m so proud to see some familiar faces!Keep up the good work and I know they will represent Bermuda well. Especially proud of my lil godsister Tsilala! :)

  3. Organic Bermudian says:

    Whatever this orginisation is bogus and elitist

  4. freddyg says:

    Congrats !!! God Bless you all !