The 2014 winner of the Richard Munro Memorial Scholarship is 15-year-old Valrico resident, Taylor Hardcastle, a ninth grade student at Newsome High School and Florida Virtual School. Hardcastle is a current student of Brandon Ballet’s Pre-Professional Training Program and a fourth year company dancer of Brandon Ballet. She has been with the Brandon Ballet for four years.
When asked how she felt when she won, Hardcastle said, “I felt overjoyed and was surprised and so excited.”
The Richard Munro Scholarship was established to honor the late Richard Munro who spent his life nurturing the art of ballet as a Ballet Master, Artistic Director and as a ballet academy founder in Kentucky and Texas. He spent the last six years of his life teaching, coaching, choreographing and performing for the Brandon Ballet.
The $500 scholarship is available to any dancer in the greater Brandon community who is classically trained in ballet and between the ages of 13 and 18. The recipient may use the scholarship to offset the cost of any summer ballet intensive program to which the recipient has been accepted during the year in which the scholarship is awarded.
Hardcastle had previously participated in Brandon Ballet’s Summer Intensive Program. She had been accepted into both the Brandon Ballet’s program and the Miami City Ballet’s Summer Intensive Program. Hardcastle also recently competed in the Youth America Grand Prix for the first time. Hardcastle said, “It was a very good experience to see how other companies work.” Hardcastle, who wants to be a professional dancer, will also compete in the American Dance Competition in March.
Hardcastle will be a part of the Brandon Ballet’s upcoming production of Cinderella which will take place on Saturday, April 26 at 7 p.m. at Spoto High School.
The Brandon Ballet was established in 1993 as a non-profit regional ballet company that develops and promotes opportunities for aspiring young dancers. The Brandon Ballet provides Brandon and the surrounding communities with an education in the art of dance. The Brandon Ballet serves the community through performances held at public facilities.
For more information, please visit www.brandonballet.org or call 684-4282.