Metropolitan Ballet Company Shines at 2009 Regional Dance America Northeast Festival

May 24th, 2009 |

Dancers Scott Stampone and Phoebe Gavula honored with awards

Metropolitan Ballet Company (MBC) dancers returned home jubilant from the 2009 Regional Dance America (RDA) Northeast Festival held in Harrisburg, PA on May 21-23, 2009. The Jenkintown- based company joined 11 other pre-professional ballet companies from across the Northeast region for three days of master classes and performances at Harrisburg’s Whitaker Center.

MBC was selected by adjudication to present two works at the Festival. The Company performed Contrasts, by MBC Artistic Director Lisa Collins Vidnovic, on the Festival’s Friday evening Concert program; and Sakamoto Suite, choreographed by Kanji Segawa, on the Saturday evening Gala program. Contrasts was the first presentation of a work by Ms. Vidnovic at Festival; Sakamoto Suite was the third contemporary work commissioned for MBC from Mr. Segawa to be presented at an RDA Festival.

A Festival highlight was the traditional Banquet, where two MBC dancers were honored with awards. Scott Stampone was selected as the male recipient of the Joshua Bridger Carlino Scholarship for Outstanding Performance, and also was presented with an RDA/NE cash award. Phoebe Gavula received the Barbara Weisberger Northeast Regional Founder’s Award, presented annually to gifted dancers to encourage further dance training.

Scott Stampone, age 17, of Meadowbrook, PA, graduated from Germantown Academy in 2009 and was member of the MBC Boys’ Scholarship Program since 2002. In addition to his year-round training at Metropolitan Ballet Company, Scott attended The Ailey School Summer Intensive in 2007, The Juilliard School Summer Dance Intensive in 2008 and the 2009 Hubbard Street Dance Chicago Summer program. Scott is a freshman at New York University Tisch School of the Arts.

Barbara Weisberger with scholarship winner Phoebe Gavula, RDA/NE Festival, Harrisburg, PA May 2009

Phoebe Gavula, age 14, of Glenside, has studied at Metropolitan Ballet since 1996. She has also attended summer programs at Central PA Youth Ballet, American Ballet Theatre / New York, and the Bolshoi Ballet Academy /New York program. The Barbara Weisberger Northeast Regional Founder’s Award carries special significance for former Pennsylvania Ballet dancer and MBC founder and Artistic Director Lisa Collins Vidnovic, who said, “Barbara Weisberger is the only living founder of the Northeast Regional Dance America organization, and she is beloved in Philadelphia as the founder of Pennsylvania Ballet. I am especially honored that one of my students received this significant award.”

MBC is a full performing member of Regional Dance America (RDA), a prestigious national association of ballet companies. RDA alumni from the Northeastern Region include Philadanco, Boston Ballet, and Princeton Ballet. Learn more about RDA at www.regional-dance-america.org.