Joffrey Ballet Announces 2020 Winners of 10th Annual Winning Works
The Joffrey Academy of Dance, Official School of The Joffrey Ballet, announces the recipients of the tenth annual Winning Works Choreographic Competition: Chanel DaSilva, Tsai Hsi Hung, Pablo Sánchez (recipient of the inaugural Zach Lazar Winning Works Fellowship, named in honor of former Joffrey Board Chair Zach Lazar) and Durante Verzola. This announcement follows a national call for ALAANA (African, Latinx, Asian, Arab and Native American) artists to submit applications, which began in May. The choreographers' world premiere works will be showcased on the members of the Joffrey Studio Company and the Joffrey Academy Trainee Program. Winning Works expands to four performances in 2020 and returns to the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago's Edlis Neeson Theater (220 E. Chicago Avenue) Friday, March 20 at 7:30 PM, Saturday, March 21 at 2:00 PM and 7:30 PM, Sunday, March 22 at 2:00 PM. Tickets for Winning Works are $30 and go on sale November 1 for purchase at joffrey.org/winningworks.
The Winning Works Choreographic Competition was created to recognize talented and emerging ALAANA choreographers and to provide them with a platform to showcase their original and innovative work. The winning choreographers are awarded a $5,000 stipend and are given the opportunity to seek guidance from The Mary B. Galvin Artistic Director of The Joffrey Ballet Ashley Wheater and Academy Director Raymond Rodriguez.
"Ten years ago, we began Winning Works with high hopes and expectations," said Wheater. "Based on the talent of our numerous winners and the depth of their art, we have succeeded in such incredible ways. This year's winners bring the same level of extraordinary artistry to the stage once again. I am so excited to welcome them as our newest Winning Works alumni and to see their original works presented to Chicago audiences this spring. The Joffrey is committed to giving choreographers of all backgrounds a voice."
"As we have seen, the demand for Winning Works grows each year and we have added a fourth performance to accommodate that demand," added Rodriguez. "Winning Works is becoming more relevant, more meaningful, more impactful. I have worked closely with all our winners over the last three years; I have read applications, worked in the studio, and seen so many choreographers take inventive risks. It gives me so much joy to see such a diverse range of talent being recognized. We will continue to find ways to support artists and expand our reach as much as possible, now in our tenth year and well beyond."
To date, the Joffrey has raised more than $180,000 to support ALAANA choreographers and the presentation of their work for the 2020 Winning Works competition. That number continues to grow, emphasizing the Joffrey's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the field of dance. The Joffrey is proud of the fact that Winning Works provides complete financial assistance - housing, travel, and work stipend - to all winners. Additionally, the Joffrey does not require an application fee for those interested in applying for the Winning Works competition.
Former winners of the Winning Works competition include Stephanie Martinez (2015), a featured choreographer on the Joffrey's upcoming spring program The Times Are Racing; Jeffrey Cirio (2016), current Lead Principal Dancer with the English National Ballet; and Claudia Schreier (2018), Ballet Master to Juilliard President Damian Woetzel.
A complete list of winners can be found at joffrey.org/winningworks.
Photo Credit: Jaqlin Medlock