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Spend your Summer at The Pillow!!! An Alumni Story

As a young dancer, I could think of nothing better than living the life of a Touring Performing Professional. I'll be truthful in saying--it seemed glamorous, being in one city or country one after the other, twirling in the passion of my craft and receiving applause and admiration from audiences all over the world.

At 17, when I decided to continue my path in dance, the goal was to do just that, join a professional company and be a Dancer. But little did I know, that it was going to take more than my head shot and bio on the company website to legitimize my position in this field.

Posing at the Inside/Out Stage Park Arena
Attending the Alonzo King LINES Ballet BFA Program was a blessing. It brought out the human side of my artistry--the side that was willing to explore, discover, take risks and find something new in the monotony of everyday life. This sort of incubation has also stayed with me and propelled me into a future ongoing as a Performance Artist. When I was ready to take on my first job--I came to see that there was so much more to it....than the Dance. What also came into my view was the brilliance of other people around me. I stopped concerning myself about the competition and finding ways to that

'll help me get to the Top but instead learning to appreciate being right where I was.....taking in the fullness of the moment and realizing that my fellow dancers, teachers and the larger picture of it all is what is important. 

Overtime, my other sensibilities kicked it. My gift for writing, critiquing, community engagement and forum discussion came into the fold and introduced me to groups of individuals who were also curious and committed to the work. I fell in love with the learning process all over again and came to understand that there was absolutely no need to rush to arrive at destination but appreciate what was/is taking place around me. The bits and pieces that I collect along the way a major--golden nuggets to my Arts Treasury.

An aspect of my Treasury includes the people and the places that have helped shape my professional career as it began. One of which includes the Jacob's Pillow School. I auditioned while visiting NYC spending time with friends for a birthday celebration. Weeks later when I discovered, that not only had I been accepted but--that I'd received a full scholarship to attend the Contemporary Dance Program Intensive under the direction of Horton Technique Dance Master  & Choreographer, Mr. Milton Meyers.

I recall that week feeling much like come home for the first time in forever...indulging myself in the archive room watching dances, see performances indoors and out, assist with rehearsal and place my imprint of a Dancing Black Body up on the Mountain.

While attending the International Association of Blacks in Dance Conference and Festival I reunited with Mr. Meyers during a "Feet of the Masters" Workshop Series and I think that everyone should have at least once in their life time a chance to experience such a movement classes and be in the presence of the Foundational Instructors like him.

If you are interested in learning more, I strongly advise  auditioning for the upcoming Jacob's Pill Audition to attend the Summer Intensive. Along with their contemporary program, they have other tracks such as Jazz/Musical Theater & Tap and a Ballet Series to choose from. Throughout the Summer you will be pulled into the World of Dance in a scenic Mountain place where performances are everyday all the time and their is always room for more dance. It's beautiful.

Tipped over into my T for Mr. Meyers at the IABD Conference 2020

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To get started, click here for the Recruitment Tour. You can also submit a video:

Get the, "You've been Accepted!" notice, sooner that everyone else when you audition and apply earlier. This will help you to plan your Summer going forward. If you'd like to take on a different spectrum of Dance--then consider one of their many Internship Programs which are offered all throughout the year: Summer, Winter & Spring Seasons.

2020 Application Deadlines & Notifications
February 14 at Noon EST Early Application Deadline, Round II | $30 processing fee
March 13 at 12 am EST Regular Deadline | $45 processing fee
March 14 Happy to consider, space permitting | $55 processing fee
Notification Admittance status emails are sent on a rolling basis for applications received by March 13. Applications received after March 14 are notified only if being accepted into the program.
Program Tuition Fee | $1,500
The two-week tuition fee includes tuition, onsite room and board, free admission to Festival performances and events, and ground transportation from Lee, MA to Jacob’s Pillow in Becket, MA. Each year up to 80% of accepted dancers receive Jacob’s Pillow Scholarships to make their attendance possible.

Full Circle Moment, greeting JPS Director JR Glover at the Merriam Theater on the first night of performances during the IABD 2020 Conference in Philadelphia, PA. Once under guidance and tutelage (and will always be....) to now stepping into the shoes of Mentor for the Prince George's County, MD Inaugural Dance Our Legacy Scholarship.
Inaugural Dance Our Legacy Scholar, Ambar Matos Ortiz 17 Afro-Latina

College Tour, Temple University Dance Department w/Senior Cierra & Editor of Black Dance Magazine Norma Porter