About

Arts Fellowship Fund
The Leonore Annenberg Fellowship Fund for the Performing and Visual Arts makes investments in a limited number of exceptionally talented young dancers, musicians, actors and visual artists as they complete their training and begin their professional life. The goal is to help these individuals become successful so they may someday serve as leaders in their field and help others in the future. Established artists and American arts institutions identify and recommend candidates to a Selection Council, which makes the final decisions. A distinguished mentor provides guidance and support to each Fellow for the duration of the one- or two-year grant. Up to 10 Leonore Annenberg Arts Fellows are selected each year. The program reflects the late Leonore Annenberg’s lifelong commitment to the arts, her desire to provide opportunities for artistic growth, and her intention to strengthen American cultural life.

Selection Process

The Fellowship Fund in the Performing and Visual Arts collaborates each year with several distinguished arts organizations and institutions to identify potential arts fellowship candidates. Collaborating organizations and institutions have included: Upon request, the partner organizations and institutions compile dossiers for a highly qualified nominee. The dossiers include the candidate’s résumé, photo, career plan, professional needs, budget and budget narrative, identification of mentor(s) during the term of the grant, additional materials and press coverage, information on the nomination process, a minimum of 2 endorsement letters, and confirmation of financial need and U.S. citizenship. Organizations submit the dossiers to Fellowship Fund program staff, who may request additional information. Program staff recommend up to 10 nominees to a Selection Council, which makes the final award decisions. Note: Unsolicited requests are not accepted.
Calvin Royal III, soloist
A native of St. Petersburg, Fla., Calvin is a member of the corps de ballet of American Ballet Theatre. He joined ABT’s pre-professional school after being discovered at the Youth America Grand Prix competition in New York City in 2006. His innate ability and passion for dance was clear, and he was swiftly promoted to ABT Studio Company and then into the Main Company in 2010. Since then, choreographer Alexei Ratmansky has featured him in Piano Concerto #1, and Marcelo Gomes created a role for him in Aftereffect. The Leonore Annenberg Fellowship gave him access to “tools” for a deeper involvement in the classics, including research into the history and dramaturgy of the classics, and additional training at the Royal Opera House at Convent Garden in London and Ballet de l’Opera de Paris.  The improvements in his classical technique allowed Calvin to perform as a Fairy Cavalier in The Sleeping Beauty, land a leading role in Serenade after Plato’s Symposium, and dance in After You and AfterEffect.  Calvin can be seen in the GAP ad for a new dance-inspired fitness line GAP Fit.
Christine Shevchenko, principal
Christine Shevchenko joined ABT’s Corps de Ballet in 2008 and became a Soloist in 2014. She has performed in the roles of Polyhymnia in Apollo, Summer in Frederick Ashton’s Cinderella, and the pas de trois and the Italian Princess in Swan Lake. She created roles in Principal Dancer, Marcelo Gomes’ acclaimed AfterEffect, Benjamin Millepeid’s Everything Doesn’t Happen at Once, and Demis Volpi’s Private Light. The youngest recipient of the Princess Grace Award in 2003, she also received the Gold Medal Title of Laureate at the Moscow International Ballet Competition, and won a Bronze Medal at the USA International Ballet Competition in Jackson, Mississippi, the George Zoritch of Ballet Russe Award for Talent Recognition, and the Margaret King Moore Dance Award. With support from the Leonore Annenberg Arts Fellowship Fund, Christine focused on acting taking classes and learning the Meisner technique.  She traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia to work the world-renowned Mariinsky Ballet, and she took classes at the Paris Opera Ballet and the Mariinsky Ballet, which she describes as “a lifelong dream.”  Christine is secure in her commitment to ballet, and she is passionate about her work: “You have to find that thing that you love, and if you are 100% sure that it is what you want to do, then you have to go for it all the way and work hard for it.”
Devon Teuscher, principal
A Soloist at American Ballet Theatre, Devon Teuscher already has great technical ability.  What the Fellowship term will provide is an opportunity for her to grow as an artist.  To this end, she plans to take acting classes, learn more about the art of choreography, engage a dance coach to prepare for new productions and challenging roles, and work with directors, companies, and artists overseas.  She intends to visit three prominent ballet companies  --  the Paris Opera Ballet, The Royal Ballet, and the Bolshoi Ballet  --  to learn more about their training styles and repertory, and to experience professional ballet environments outside of her own long-time company.  With a “strong desire to stretch her mind through college courses,” she is also pursuing a Bachelor of Liberal Arts degree at Saint Mary’s College through an existing arrangement which takes into account the working schedules of ABT dancers.
Sarah Lane, principal
A Soloist with American Ballet Theatre, Sarah used her Fellowship to explore new avenues of dance with flamenco lessons in Spain. She also gained a better understanding of choreography and participated in workshops and seminars in arts leadership. As a teenager, Sarah won first place at the North American Ballet Festival in 2000 and 2001 and received the Capezio Class Excellence Award.  In 2002 she received the highest medal in the Junior Division of the Jackson International Ballet Competition.  During that time she also performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. as a presidential scholar in the arts.  Also in 2002, she won the bronze medal at the Youth America Grand Prix Competition and in 2007 she won a Princess Grace Award.  Sarah appeared as a dance double for actor Natalie Portman in the Darren Aronofsky-directed thriller Black Swan. In 2013, she performed in a dance video, On a Grass Field, which made its premiere at the 2014 Chain New York City Film Festival.  The video was created as a Fellowship-funded project of her ABT colleague Eric Tamm.  She is a co-founder of Ballet Mentor, an online mentorship service for dancers.  

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