Ann Etgen and Bill Atkinson, Nycole Ray and More Receive 2013 Dance Council of North Texas Honors Today
DCNT has announced the 2013 Honors recipients. Passion and dedication are the mark of each recipient. The six dancers will be honored today, September 29, 2013, 2:00 pm. The public is invited to celebrate their achievements, enjoy a showcase of selected 2013 Dance Council scholarship dancers and a Silent Auction featuring an irresistible selection of performance and visual arts items and tickets.
Mary Bywaters Award for Lifetime Contribution to Dance - Ann Etgen and Bill Atkinson
The husband-wife team of Bill Atkinson and Ann Etgen is a Dallas institution. Each had extensive professional ballet careers in New York, Canada, and South America before coming to Dallas. Through the Etgen-Atkinson Ballet School, Bill and Ann have had distinguished careers training dancers, choreographing gorgeous ballets, and directing their company, the Dallas Metropolitan Ballet. The Choreography Plan of The National Association for Regional Ballet honored three of their ballets and the N.E A. awarded them a choreography fellowship. Etgen has served on the Dance Panel of the Texas Commission on the Arts and Humanities and both have held offices in Regional Dance America/Southwest. They created two useful aids for teachers and dancers: "Ballet is Fun" a video ballet dictionary and graded syllabus and "Turn Board" a tool for learning to turn.
Natalie Skelton Award for Artistic Excellence - Nycole Ray
Nycole Ray is the Artistic Director for Dallas Black Dance Theatre II, marking her sixteenth season as a dancer with Dallas Black Dance Theatre. Nycole is the past director of Bloom, Dallas Black Dance Academy's Performing Ensemble, and was Assistant Rehearsal Director for Dallas Black Dance Theatre.
A Detroit native, Nycole began dancing in high school while attending the Center for Advanced Studies and the Arts. Attending Wayne State University, Ray realized that she wanted to perform. Transferring to The California Institute of the Arts, she graduated with a B.B.A. in dance. Ray's illustrious career includes performing with the Bruce Wood Dance Project, Walt Disney World Entertainment, Christopher and Friends directed by Christopher L. Huggins, Lula Washington Dance Theater, Dayton Contemporary Dance Company II and the Zadonu African Dance Company. Ray's choreography has been staged on Wayne State University's Dance Company, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Dallas Black Dance Theatre II, and the Milwaukee Dance Connection. A commission to create Le Afrique Masquerade for the Dallas Museum of Arts' The Art of Disguise exhibit of African Masks in 2010 was preceded by a work created for the Dallas Holocaust Museum in 2009.
Larry White Dance Educator Award - Solomon Espie
An Ohio native, Solomon Espie was a successful athlete, graduating from The Ohio State University with a degree in physical education. Besides a successful career in academia and business, he taught for the Columbus Public Schools and was an assistant track and field coach at O.S.U.