This year marks the 25th anniversary for the Sunshine Coast Dance Society (SCDS) and it’s also the 25th year of giving student awards in the name of ballerina Lois Smith, one of the original founders of the Society.
SCDS director Diana Robertson said that the ballet, modern and choreographic dance applications and auditions were adjudicated at the end of June, and 2018 cash awards totalling $3,500 were presented to three young dancers.
Sophie Malcolmson received the Lois Smith Memorial Junior (under 14 years) Ballet Award. Sophie, who just turned 11, is a rising ballet star on the Coast and is attending the National Ballet School summer dance program in Toronto this summer. A student of Dominique’s School of Dance in Gibsons, Sophie played the principal role of Clara in the local production of The Nutcracker and attended the Alberta Ballet Summer Intensive program in 2017. Her future plans include focusing on her RAD studies and exploring contemporary ballet techniques.
Bronte Hanson won the Lois Smith Excellence in Ballet Senior Award (over 14) as well as the SC Dance Society Award for Modern Dance. Bronte also won the Lois Smith Memorial Award for Ballet presented at the Sunshine Coast Festival of the Performing Arts in February.
She has just graduated from Sechelt’s Coast Academy of Dance’s three-year pre-professional dance program and completed with distinction her Modern and Tap Imperial Society of Teachers of Dancing (ISTD) exams. As well as the Dance Society award recognition for Ballet and Modern Dance, Bronte received the highest overall score for Lyrical Ballet Solo in 2018 spring competitions in Vancouver, and an invitation to attend a 2019 International dance competition in Europe.
Alyssa Rive, also a senior dance student, won the second annual Dance Society’s Choreography Award. Bronte and Alyssa will both be teaching next year and working on advanced level ISTD designations.
The Dance Society’s mandate is to present and promote classical and modern dance forms at a professional level, provide career and development opportunities for Sunshine Coast students and teachers of dance and enrich the cultural life on the Sunshine Coast through dance.