Mariela Morales, a young dancer with The Dance Center and Brandon Ballet, is the 2020 winner of the Richard Munro Memorial Scholarship.

The 2020 winner of the Richard Munro Memorial Scholarship is Mariela Morales, a young dancer who has been performing with The Dance Center and Brandon Ballet for over 10 years.

Hannah Townend, administrative director for the Brandon Ballet, said, “Morales is one who is admired by her peers and Brandon Ballet Artistic Director Doricha Sales for her innate, vivacious performance presence and her ability to blossom under pressure. In just this season alone, Morales has tackled and shone in three of the hardest variations from La Bayadere, Raymonda and Goddess Flora in our production of For the Love of Aurora. Morales is a driven, intellectual dancer and she plans to take the life lessons learned in the dance studio to pursue an education and career in nursing.”

Morales said of her scholarship win, “I am thrilled to have received this scholarship and am honored and inspired to continue dancing.”

You can see Morales’ joyful dancing in the fourth and final production of the season, The Agony and the Ecstasy, on Saturday, May 1 at 7:30 p.m. at Riverview High Theatre. You can get tickets and more information at

Brandon Ballet offers serious dancers an opportunity to improve their skills and work with talented dancers in its Summer Intensive. Brandon Ballet’s Summer Intensive is a progressive and cumulative three-week program designed to enhance technique and artistry in an inclusive yet intensive preprofessional environment.

Attendees will work with a variety of renowned dance teachers in a range of styles, including contemporary, improvisation and modern, in addition to daily classes in ballet technique and pointe. Through their exposure to these assorted genres of movement, dancers will have the opportunity to reinforce their skills as well as learn repertoire and/or variations in that style.

According to Townend, “This year’s list of guest teachers is extensive. Jacob Taylor, an emerging choreographer based in Connecticut and New York City, will be creating an original contemporary ballet piece for the advanced dancers. Courtney Moody is a current Brandon Ballet principal professional dancer and teacher at The Dance Center. Allison Jay Barber is an exquisite dancer with a prolific performance career and a current adjunct ballet professor at Florida Southern College. We will also have Doricha Sales, Marquis Floyd, Rose Forte Hensley, Sarah Parry, Hannah Townend and Brentwood Townend.”

Prospective dancers who would like to audition can submit a video audition by Saturday, May 22 at 5 p.m. For more information, please visit

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