A few years ago, Isabella Boylston told Pointe there's an elite club at American Ballet Theatre: "The Princesses." It's corps member Blaine Hoven's nickname for the dancers like David Hallberg and Gillian Murphy who've been awarded a prestigious Princess Grace Award.
The 2012 Princess Grace Award winners were just announced. The recipients in dance include Ballet West's favorite up-and-comer and "Breaking Pointe" star Beckanne Sisk, as well as Jamal R. Callender of Ballet Hispanico, Albert Gordon of The Washington Ballet School, Franco Nieto of Northwest Dance Project, Raymond S. Pinto from Juilliard and David Schultz from Hubbard Street. Student winners recieve a year's scholarship at their school; professionals have a year of their salary paid for by the Princess Grace Foundation.
Although some companies have tightened their belts over the past few years, the Princess Grace Foundation has remained a reliable source of financial support for emerging artists. Each year, the judging panel chooses five or six up-and-coming dancers to receive a Princess Grace Award.