Dance Magazine Awards

The Dance Magazine Awards recognize outstanding men and women whose contributions have left a lasting impact on dance. The tradition dates back to 1954. Celebrate this years awardees at the 2017 Dance Magazine Awards on December 4th at 7:30pm in New York City:

For the first time ever, the proceeds from the awards ceremony will go to The Harkness Foundation for Dance to create a new grant for choreographers in their first decade of our work. It's our way of not only honoring those who have made dance what it is today, but investing in artists who will help shape what it becomes tomorrow.

To purchase tickets, please email dmawards@dancemedia.com or call (212) 979-4872. Performance and post-awards cocktail party tickets are $250. Performance-only tickets are $50. Opportunities to participate at a leadership level of $1,000 are available and include a VIP pre-performance champagne reception.

Dance Magazine Awards

The 2018 Dance Magazine Awards will take place on December 3 at the Alvin Ailey Citigroup Theater in New York City. Performances and presentations will celebrate this year's honorees, to be announced this September.

The proceeds from the awards ceremony will go to The Harkness Foundation for Dance to fund a grant for choreographers in their first decade of work. It's our way of not only honoring those who have made dance what it is today, but investing in artists who will help shape what it becomes tomorrow.

The Dance Magazine Awards recognize outstanding men and women whose contributions have left a lasting impact on dance. The tradition dates back to 1954. Click here to view all past recipients.

To purchase tickets, email dmawards@dancemedia.com or call (212) 979-4872. Performance and post-awards cocktail party tickets are $250. Performance-only tickets are $50. Opportunities to participate at a leadership level of $1,000 are available and include a VIP pre-performance champagne reception.

Dance Magazine Awards
Misty Copeland accepting her award in 2014. Photo by Cherylynn Tsushima

2017

Rennie Harris

Marika Molnar

Linda Celeste Sims

Diana Vishneva

2016

Carolyn Adams

Lynn Garafola

Lar Lubovitch

Tiler Peck

2015

Soledad Barrio

Marcelo Gomes

Karen Kain

David Vaughan

Jawole Willa Jo Zollar

2014

Brenda Bufalino and Tony Waag

Misty Copeland

Luigi

Wayne McGregor

Larissa Saveliev

2013

Martha Clarke

Mats Ek

Philip Glass

Yuan Yuan Tan

Patricia Wilde

2012

Julie Kent

Anna Kisselgoff

Renee Robinson

Diane Walker

2011

Dr. William Hamilton

Alexei Ratmansky

Kathleen Marshall

Yvonne Rainer

Jennifer Ringer

2010

Deborah Jowitt

Pilobous Dance Theatre

Irina Kolpakova

Matthew Rusing

2009

Allegra Kent

Ohad Naharin

Sara Rudner

Jason Samuels Smith

2008

Pina Bausch

Lawrence Rhodes

Ethan Stiefel

Sylvia Waters

2007

Bettie de Jong

Bebe Neuwirth

Desmond Richardson

Wendy Whelan

2006

Todd Bolender

Eiko & Koma

David Howard

Gelsey Kirkland

Joan Meyers Brown

2005

Clive Barnes

Alessandra Ferri

Donald McKayle

Jimmy Slyde

Christopher Wheeldon

2004

Jose Manuel Carreño

Chuck Davis

Anna Halprin

Chita Rivera

2003

William Forsythe

Susan Jaffe

Jock Soto

Charles and Stephanie Reinhart

2002

Nina Ananiashvili

Frank Andersen

Jack Mitchell

Tina Ramirez

2001

Terese Capucilli

Michael M. Kaiser

Susan Stroman

Damian Woetzel

2000

David Parsons

Ann Reinking

Ben Stevenson

1999

Barbara Horgan for the Balanchine Trust

Al Pischl for Dance Horizons

Jacques d'Amboise

Martin Fredmann

Kevin McKenzie

1998

Jeraldyne Blunden

Julio Bocca

Suki Schorer

Dame Ninette de Valois

1997

Claude Bessy

Anna-Marie Holmes and Bruce Marks

Dudley Williams

Hernando Cortez & Dancers Responding to AIDS

1996

Peter Boal

Savion Glover

Francia Russell and Kent Stowell

Ann Barzel*

1995

Susan Marshall

Carla Maxwell

Fayard and Harold Nicholas

1994

Christine Dakin

Kate Johnson

Jirí Kylián

1993

Bill T. Jones

Pierre Dulaine and Yvonne Marceau

Beatriz Rodriguez

1992

Darci Kistler

Meredith Monk

Helgi Tomasson

1991

Virginia Johnson

Mark Morris

Jennifer Tipton

1990

Garth Fagan

Eliot Feld

Hanya Holm

1988

"Dancing for Life"

Moscelyne Larkin and Roman Jasinski

P. W. Manchester

Kyra Nichols

1987

Merrill Ashley

Trisha Brown

Liz Thompson

David White

Doris Hering*

1985

Charles "Honi" Coles

Richard Cragun

Frederic Franklin

Heather Watts

Walter Sorell*

1984

Alexandra Danilova

Robert Irving

Donald Saddler

Tommy Tune

Dance Masters of America, Inc.*

1983

Jeannot Cerrone

John Neumeier

Michael Smuin

Martine van Hamel

1982

Fernando Bujones

Laura Dean Arnold Spohr

Lee Theodore

1981

Selma Jeanne Cohen

Sir Anton Dolin Twyla Tharp

Stanley Williams

1980

Patricia McBride

Ruth Page

Paul Taylor

Herbert Ross and Nora Kaye*

1979

Aaron Copland

Jorge Donn

Erick Hawkins

1978

Mikhail Baryshnikov

Raoul Gelabert

Bella Lewitzky

1977

Murray Louis

Natalia Makarova

Peter Martins

1976

Michael Bennett

Suzanne Farrell

E. Virginia Williams

1975

Alvin Ailey

Cynthia Gregory

Arthur Mitchell

1974

Gerald Arpino

Maurice Béjart

Antony Tudor

1973

The Christensen Brothers (Lew, Harold, Willam)

Rudolf Nureyev

1972

Anthony Dowell

Judith Jamison

1970

Sir Frederick Ashton

Carolyn Brown

Ted Shawn

1969

Erik Bruhn

Katherine Dunham

Carla Fracci

1968

Eugene Loring

Alwin Nikolais

Violette Verdy

1967

Carmen deLavallade

Sol Hurok

Wesleyan University Press

1966

Edwin Denby

Margaret H'Doubler

Maya Plisetskaya

1965

John Butler

Peter Gennaro

Edward Villella

1964

Gower Champion

Robert Joffrey

Pauline Koner

1963

Isadora Bennett

Margot Fonteyn

Bob Fosse

1962

Melissa Hayden

Anna Sokolow

Gwen Verdon

1960

Merce Cunningham

Igor Moiseyev

Maria Tallchief

1959

Dorothy Alexander

Fred Astaire

George Balanchine

1958

Alicia Alonso

Doris Humphrey

Gene Kelly

Igor Youskevitch

1957

Lucia Chase

José Limón

Alicia Markova

Jerome Robbins

1956

Agnes de Mille

Martha Graham

1955

Jack Cole

Gene Nelson

Moira Shearer

1954

Dance on TV: Adventure (CBS)

Tony Charmoli (NBC)

Max Liebman (NBC)

Omnibus (CBS)

*Special award

Dance Magazine Awards
Rennie Harris Puremovement. Photo by Christopher Duggan

Some nights, you head home buzzing with energy. After last night's Dance Magazine Awards, we were dancing with it.

We had the privilege of honoring four legends of our field—Rennie Harris, Marika Molnar, Linda Celeste Sims and Diana Vishneva—in a ceremony that was filled with inspiration and beauty.

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Dance Magazine Awards
Marika Molnar working with Ana Sophia Scheller. Photo by Rachel Papo for Dance Teacher

Since George Balanchine first asked her to care for his dancers in the 1980s, Marika Molnar has helped heal icons as varied as Merce Cunningham, Trisha Brown, Natalia Makarova, Judith Jamison, Twyla Tharp, Chita Rivera and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Some patients call her their guardian angel.

"Marika has always answered all my (sometimes ridiculous) questions with the patience and respect that can only come from a deep love of us patients and what we do," says New York City Ballet principal Ashley Bouder. "Without her help during and after my pregnancy, I would never have been able to come back to the stage at full capacity."

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Dance Magazine Awards
Andrew Eccles, courtesy AAADT

Yes, she's small, but the word "mighty" doesn't even begin to get to the root of Linda Celeste Sims' startling magnetism. She joined Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1996 and now, at 41, it's as if her luminous dancing has entered another realm.

"I don't feel tired," she says. "I don't feel like I hate it. I don't feel like it's redundant. I can express different things. I can see what's happening in a more mature way, and I'm intrigued by this moment."

It's not that she isn't aware of her aging body. "I'm not as quick and as fast as I used to be," Sims says. "It's a challenge, but how can I express movement in a new way?"

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Osamu Inoue, courtesy Harris

It makes sense that Dance Magazine long ago dubbed Rennie (Lorenzo) Harris the "high priest of hip hop." When the often shy, Philadelphia-born choreographer founded his company Rennie Harris Puremovement in 1992, he planted a prodigious seed in the dance world. Then and now, Harris' mission has been to examine, preserve and share the culture of hip hop, decisively away from the commercially exploited view.

Harris remembers that when he started in the '90s, it was rough; a lot of his work was direct, so picketing and policing RHPM shows was the norm. But that time also harkened the birth of his well-thought-out launch of street dance onto the concert stage. There was the politically charged March of the Antmen, the pointed look at brotherhood and neighborhoods in P-Funk, and the tour de force Students of the Asphalt Jungle. His chilling solos, Lorenzo's Oil and Endangered Species, screamed chaos, contradiction and culture. In the 2000s, Rome & Jewels, his first evening-length work, garnered a Bessie Award. Facing Mekka followed, celebrating women of hip hop.

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Dance Magazine Awards
Photo by Valentin Baranovsky, courtesy Vishneva

For years, Diana Vishneva seemed to be an exotic creature who landed in New York City: If we held our collective breath long enough, perhaps she wouldn't fly away. But last June, this Russian ballerina did just that after delivering her farewell performance of Onegin with American Ballet Theatre, where she had been a principal since 2005. Her wild passion, her musicality and her ability to hold nothing back made her classical dancing all the more thrilling.

Vishneva got her start at the Vaganova Ballet Academy in St. Petersburg. Seven years later she won the Prix de Lausanne, and in 1995, she joined the Mariinsky Ballet, with whom she gave her first major performances in New York City. In 2001, she began her guest artist career, performing with La Scala Ballet, the Paris Opéra Ballet, Staatsballett Berlin and others over the years.

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Dance Magazine Awards

***** FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE *****

Contact: Nicole Buggé

Media Manager

Dance Media Publications, LLC

nbuggé@dancemedia.com 212-979-4862

Dance Magazine is pleased to announce that the annual Dance Magazine Awards, the most prestigious awards event in dance, will make the Harkness Foundation for Dance the beneficiary of the proceeds from the event, which will be held on Monday, December 4, at the Ailey Citigroup Theater (405 West 55th Street) in Manhattan. The Harkness Foundation for Dance, a leading donor to dance, will in turn designate the proceeds to a newly created award to assist choreographers in their first decade of professional work.

''I am thrilled that we are able, in partnership with the Harkness Foundation, to provide tangible support to the dance community. I could think of no better way to leverage the power of Dance Magazine, now celebrating its 90th anniversary.''—Frederic M. Seegal, owner and CEO, Dance Media Publications, LLC

The Dance Magazine Awards recognize outstanding men and women whose contributions have left a lasting impact on dance. The tradition dates back to 1954. The new Harkness Promise Award seeks to shine a light on the other end of the spectrum, recognizing emerging young artists for the promise of their artistic work, and also for their innovative thinking about how to be an effective artist-citizen who positively impacts dance and the broader community through performance, education, organization, activism or other means. From 1986 to the present, the Harkness Foundation has contributed over $30 million to more than 560 organizations across the industry.

The Harkness Promise Award will include a $5,000 unrestricted grant, up to 40 hours of studio space within the grant year, and ongoing consulting and mentorship with Joan Finkelstein, the foundation's executive director. A performance project may result from this support, but is not a condition of the award. The first recipient(s) will be announced in June 2018.

"The Harkness Foundation for Dance is honored to partner with the dance field's indisputable magazine of record, Dance Magazine. The Foundation is excited about this new initiative, which will extend our ability to support the future of the dance field.'' —Joan Finkelstein, Executive Director, The Harkness Foundation for Dance

The winners of the 60th annual Dance Magazine Awards will be announced in the October 2017 issue of Dance Magazine. To facilitate the success of the awards event and fundraising for the Harkness Promise Award, a gala committee is in formation.

Tickets to the performance and post-awards cocktail party and buffet are $250. Opportunities to participate at a leadership level of $1,000 are available and include a VIP pre-performance champagne reception. Performance-only tickets are $50. To order, email dmawards@dancemedia.com or call 212-979-4872.

###

About Dance Magazine:
For 90 years, Dance Magazine has provided insight and practical information, as well as news, interviews and beautiful, original photography. Dance Magazine illuminates the art form on a global scale, often breaking ground with fiercely personal accounts of life as a dancer. Dance Magazine is published by Dance Media Publications, LLC, whose properties also include: Dance Spirit®, Dance Teacher®, Pointe® and Dance Retailer NewsTM, plus associated websites and apps.

About The Harkness Foundation for Dance:
The Harkness Foundation for Dance is a private grant-making foundation dedicated to invigorating and supporting the dance art-form, predominantly in New York City. Since 1959, the Harkness name has been synonymous with dance philanthropy. The Foundation carries forward the lifelong dedication to the dance art form of the great American dance patron Rebekah Harkness. Over many decades, this support has taken the form of funding, rehearsal and theater space, technical assistance, and guidance—an unrivaled legacy that has touched countless dance artists and companies in all dance styles and genres. With a broad focus that spans dance creation, presentation, education, medicine and other vital services to the dance field, from 1986 to the present the Harkness Foundation has contributed over $30 million to more than 560 organizations across the industry. For more information: harknessfoundation.org

Dance Magazine Awards

What do Fred Astaire, Pina Bausch and Misty Copeland have in common? They are all part of one of the most prestigious groups in dance: the Dance Magazine Award recipients. A tradition that dates back to 1954, the Dance Magazine Awards celebrate the living legends who have made a lasting impact on our field.

Today, we are thrilled to announce the four honorees for 2017:

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Alice Sheppard photographed by Jayme Thornton for Dance Magazine

It can be hard to focus when Alice Sheppard dances.

Her recent sold-out run of DESCENT at New York Live Arts, for instance, offered a constellation of stimulation. Onstage was a large architectural ramp with an assortment of peaks and planes. There was an intricate lighting and projection design. There was a musical score that unfolded like an epic poem. There was a live score too: the sounds of Sheppard and fellow dancer Laurel Lawson's bodies interacting with the surfaces beneath them.

And there were wheelchairs. But if you think the wheelchairs are the center of this work, you're missing something vital about what Sheppard creates.

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The Broadway revival of CATS. Photo by Matthew Murphy

A Jellicle Ball is coming to the big screen, with the unlikeliest of dancemakers on tap to choreograph.

We'll give you some hints: His choreography can aptly be described as "animalistic," though Jellicle cats have never come to mind specifically when watching his hyper-physical work. He's worked on movies before—even one about Beasts. And though contemporary ballet is his genre of choice, his choreography is certainly theatrical enough to lend itself to a musical.

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Omar Román De Jesús in rehearsal with Joffrey Academy trainees. Photo by Todd Rosenberg

So far, the fervor to create diversity in ballet has primarily focused on dancers. Less attention has been paid to the work that they'll encounter once they arrive.

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