Diamond Dance members win dance scholarships, Best Choreography Award

'The Wizard of Oz Ballet' returns to Milford stage April 4 and 5
Performing in Diamond Dance Company's original piece, “In Pursuit of Liberation," are in back (l-r) Heather Reid, Jordan Adkins, Tori Brown-O’Brien and Madeline Carlson. In front are scholarship recipients Arlene Maheu and Hayley Schuster. SOURCE SUBMITTED
February 28, 2014

Diamond Dance Company travelled to Wilmington recently to participate in the 2014 Delaware Dance Festival, where three members received scholarships to assist with furthering their dance training and education. Arlene Maheu, 17, of Felton received a $200 scholarship. Hayley Schuster, 17, of Camden was awarded a scholarship to attend a weeklong dance intensive with the Delaware Dance Company in Newark.

Both dancers performed in the original Diamond Dance Company piece, “In Pursuit of Liberation," choreographed by Tori Brown-O’Brien, a former DDC member and award-winning choreographer.

Maheu also performed with En Pointe Studio in a work titled “Feeling Acceptance,” choreographed by Kimmy Noll, director. Likewise, Schuster performed with Delaware Ballet in an original piece titled “Letting Go,” choreographed and staged by Delaware Ballet associate director Brittany Kaiser.

Juliana Warnock, 10, of Milford was presented with a $100 scholarship. She performed in an original piece, “Reverence," with Tatiana Akinfieva Dance Academy of Milford. This piece was choreographed by TADA instructor and DDC director Misty Yencer.

Throughout the weekend, the dancers participated in several master dance classes and a scholarship audition class. The weekend came to an end with a showcase of dances performed by more than 20 regional dance companies. Maheu studies dance at En Pointe Studio in Camden; Schuster studies at The School of Delaware Ballet in Dover and First State Ballet Theater in Wilmington; Warnock studies at TADA in Milford.

Diamond Dance Company awarded Best Choreography 2013

Kimmy Noll, Misty Yencer, and Tori Brown-O’Brien were nominated for a regional Broadway World award for Best Choreography in the non-professional category for Diamond Dance Company’s original production of "The Wizard of Oz Ballet."

Along with the nomination for Best Choreography, the company was nominated for awards in the following non-professional categories: Best New Work - Kimmy Noll, Misty Yencer;  Best Costume Design - Susan Grant; Best Set Design - Luis Rios; and Best Community Theater Group.

Diamond Dance Company will once again bring this ballet back to the stage at 7 p.m., Friday and Saturday, April 4 and 5, at Milford High School. For more information go to DDC's Facebook page or visit

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