Blog Entry – Jacob’s Pillow 2013

From June 10 – 23, two Houston Ballet II dancers have been invited to participate in the prestigious ballet program at the legendary Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival in Western Massachusetts.

April 2013_MG_4540-order - Aoi Fujiwara and Eric White

Ballet: Brigade; Dancers: Aoi Fujiwara and Eric White; Photo: Amitava Sarkar

Aoi Fujiwara, an 18 year-old originally from Osaka, Japan who has trained at Houston Ballet’s Academy for two years, was awarded a full scholarship. Mallory Mehaffey, an 18 year-old from Sugar Land, Texas who has studied at the Academy for two years, was selected by the Jacob’s Pillow panel to participate.

The Sleeping Beauty_Mallory Mehaffey and Joel Woellner

Ballet: The Sleeping Beauty; Dancers: Mallory Mehaffey and Joel Woellner; Photo: Amitava Sarkar

Jacob’s Pillow Dance is lauded worldwide as a “hub and mecca of dancing” (TIME Magazine), and “the dance center of the nation” (The New York Times). “The Pillow” is a treasured 220-acre National Historic Landmark, a recipient of the prestigious National Medal of Arts, and home to America’s longest-running international dance festival. Each year thousands of people from across the U.S. and around the globe visit the Berkshires of Western Massachusetts to experience the Festival with more than 50 dance companies

At the Pillow, both Ms. Mehaffey and Ms. Aoi will have the invaluable opportunity to train with stellar teachers such as New York City Ballet Principal Dancer Wendy Whelan and Anna Marie Holmes, director of the program. They will also perform in a world premiere created by the acclaimed dance maker Helen Pickett in the opening gala of the 2013 Festival on June 15.  And on June 22, they will take the stage again as part of the Pillow’s free outdoor performance series.

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