September 2006 Recipients
Young ballerina Katherine Grange (pictured) will follow her dream to pursue prestigious studies in Dance thanks to a generous grant from the Mazda Foundation.
The 17-year-old dancer was one of 12 recipients of the 2006 National Young Performer of the Year Award, which received backing from the Mazda Foundation.
The Foundation’s $18,000 grant helped provide 12 Mazda Performing Arts Tuition Scholarships for the 2006 National Young Performer of the Year Award winners who will further their training in four categories – ballet, tap, pianoforte and vocal.
The grant has come at a significant time for Katherine, who was prevented from taking a place at the prestigious English National Ballet due to a lack of funding. However, the aspiring dancer will use her Mazda Foundation Tuition Grant to commence studies at the New Zealand School of Dance next year.
Katherine is just one of the young and exceptionally talented performers recognised at the 2006 National Young Performer of the Year Awards, held in October.
Other first place getters were: Andrew Cesan for Tap Dance, John-Paul Muir for Pianoforte and Brigitte Heuser for vocals.
Annette Johnston, National Administrator for the Performing Arts Competitions Association of New Zealand says the donation has struck a chord with the performers and she hopes Mazda will continue the relationship for future events.
“It was absolutely delightful that Mazda decided to get behind this. This has given 12 very fine young people from all over the country the opportunity to take their careers further.
“The 2006 National Young Performer of the Year Award has been an unprecedented success.”
A total $4,500 was allocated to each category, with first place getters receiving $3,000, second place getters $1,000 and third place getters, $500.
All recipients were identified for having talent, skills and motivation to move onto a professional career in their chosen art form.
A record number of competitors (121) traveled to Tauranga from all over New Zealand for the annual competition.
The National Young Performer of the Year Award has been running since 1977 and is initiated by the Performing Arts Competitions Association of New Zealand (Pacanz).