In the world of classical ballet, antiquated traditions still prevail, from stringent body ideals and a lack of racial diversity to males occupying leadership roles by an overwhelming majority. At New York University, ballet advocates are taking steps to change that.
NYU’s Center for Ballet and the Arts announced last week it will offer the Virginia B. Toulmin Fellowship for Women Choreographers. Over the course of three years, three women choreographers will be awarded semester-long fellowships, which include a $35,000 stipend, office and studio space and access to housing in NYC.
Part of the Center for Ballet and the Arts’ mission is to encourage cross-discipline dialogue, so fellows will also be put in touch with other artists and scholars, accessing a built-in creative community. Director of the center (and Apollo’s Angels author) Jennifer Homans told the New York Times, “We’re in a position to create a kind of opportunity and staging ground for women who want to be choreographers or who are choreographers and need a place to explore a piece that they’re working on, to really have a moment where they can do research.”
To be considered for the fellowship, choreographers must submit a proposal for the project they will work on while at the center. For more information, visit balletcenter.nyu.edu.
Photo by Mathieu Asselin, Courtesy NYU