taZ students selected to participate in Youth America Grand Prix 25th Anniversary in New York City

Sonntag 28.04.24
From: ZhdK

Martina Scaglione, 16, and Johannes Matthys de Beer, 16, students of the Zurich Dance Academy, received the opportunity to participate in the YAGP 25th anniversary “Stars of Today Meet the Stars of Tomorrow” Gala in New York City and danced in the world premiere of “Sang Mêlé” by Mexican choreographer Julieta Martínez.

The two students were invited as part of a collaboration of four YAGP partner schools - the American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School (USA), John Cranko School (Germany), Académie de Danse Princesse (Monaco), and Zurich Dance Academy.

The project offered a unique chance for the young dancers to take part in the creation process of a new work in its entirety, as they would in a professional dance company - from initial choreographic experimentation to the final performance on an international stage, the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center in New York City, on 19 April 2024.

“It is our hope that the dancers came away from their time in New York having gained invaluable experience by working together with Julieta in this capacity - and with other uniquely talented peers. In short, we hope this was an experience they will cherish and remember for the rest of their dance careers,” said Hailey Kolker, YAGP communications director.

Martina Scaglione and Johannes Matthys de Beer spent two weeks rehearsing at Académie de Danse Princesse Grace in Monaco and nearly one week rehearsing in New York City before the final performance. They say they came away inspired and with a newly ignited passion for dance.

“What inspired me the most was the great exchange that took place between the choreographer and with the other dancers from different schools,” said Martina Scaglione. “This made me understand how important it is to vary and experiment with different dance styles and approaches, because you want to be ready and flexible for whoever you work with.”

“I came back to Zurich so inspired and energetic to work on my dancing. My passion just grew with every day of this experience,” said Johannes Matthys de Beer. “I believe that every day is an opportunity to grow and be inspired.”

Strengthening the bonds and broadening the collaborations within the international dance community is important for the students and also a strong priority at Zurich Dance Academy, Jason Beechey, designated Head of Dance at the Zurich University of the Arts.

“Our students have come away with new self-confidence, new experiences, artistic growth and have begun to build their own professional network of collaborators,” he said. “A huge thank you to YAGP for this wonderful opportunity.”