TPHS dancer named finalist in national competition

Avery Hall (10), a finalist in modern contemporary dance in the nationwide YoungArts competition, attended the 2023 National YoungArts Week in Miami, Florida from Jan. 8 to 15.

The YoungArts competition, which recognizes artistic students ages 15 to 18 with honorable mentions, merit awards and finalist awards, receives more than 7,000 applicants in music, dance, theater and writing each year. Only 10% place in the competition.

Hall’s application consisted of a two-minute solo video of her dancing, as well as a two-minute video highlighting her dancing technique. 

After submitting her application in October, Hall received a call in December that she had not only placed in the competition, but she had also achieved the highest level of YoungArts recognition: a finalist. 

“I answered it and right when they told me [I won] … I was like ‘No way, this is crazy,’” Hall said.

Across the varying disciplines of dance, there were 19 other finalists, according to Hall. 

Part of what has made Hall’s dance journey possible is her studio, Danceology. Her instructors were thrilled to see her succeed. 

“I feel very grateful to have the pleasure of teaching Avery and excited to see her accomplish such an amazing goal,” Tiffany King, one of Hall’s dance instructors, said. 

While Hall was in Miami, she attended classes led by dance professionals with the other finalists in dance. These dancers are just as passionate as Hall, according to King. 

“Being around dancers and educators of a similar dedication level from all over the country invigorated her aspirations as an artist and encouraged her to pursue even more future educational opportunities,” King said.

YoungArts Week was also a great opportunity for Hall to stay active in this community of artists. 

“It’s so special knowing that I could consider myself to be a part of such an inspiring group of young artists,” Hall said. 

To King, winning a YoungArts award has big implications for Hall’s future. 

“I hope the YoungArts program helps to shed a light on Avery’s amazing talents and open doors to other opportunities for her in the future,” King said. 

Hall and other YoungArts finalists may also be eligible to become U.S. Presidential Scholars in the Arts in their high school graduating years, an award organized by the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars.

Previous notable winners of the YoungArts award include professional dancers Gaby Diaz and Sarah Lane, but their footsteps are not the ones that Hall is most excited to follow. 

Instead, Hall considers her second cousin, a 2019 YoungArts finalist in modern contemporary dance, the person she is thrilled to share this award with because she is “a huge inspiration” to Hall.

Hall is a veteran in the dancing community. She attended a Juilliard summer intensive last year and is set to tour with The Dance Awards in Las Vegas, having placed in the top 13 in 2021.

For Hall, dancing is an escape, an art form that she fell in love with. Through her YoungArts award, her passion and talent for dance was recognized by the artistic world.

Read on Issuu.

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