Jacqueline Stewart, a Chicago-based dancer and choreographer, has won a $10,000 cash award to use toward the creation of a new dance work.
Stewart was the winner among 12 participants in The A.W.A.R.D Show!—a four-day competition from July 28 to 31 at the Dance Center of Columbia College Chicago. (“A.W.A.R.D” stands for “Audiences With Artists Responding to Dance.”) Two runners-up, Michel Rodriguez/Hedwig Dances and Joanna Rosenthal/Same Planet Different World, were each awarded $1,000.
Each of the competition’s first three evening performances featured the work of four different choreographers, followed by a moderated discussion between artists and audience and an audience vote to select a finalist to perform again on the fourth night of the series. At the final performance on July 31, a panel of arts professionals along with the audience chose the winner of the $10,000 award.
The voting panelists included Lane Alexander, co-founder and director of the Chicago Human Rhythm Project; Homer Bryant, founder of the School of Bryant Ballet; Roell Schmidt, director of Links Hall; and Linda Shelton, executive director of the Joyce Theater Foundation, which partnered with the Dance Center to bring the competition to Chicago.
Jacqueline Stewart, a Chicago native, performed for three seasons with Duarte Dance Works Contemporary Dance and has danced for various other artists, including Deana Carter in Rimini, Italy, in 2006. In Chicago she made guest performances with The Dance COLEctive and The Seldoms and joined Thodos Dance Chicago in 2007.