The Mae L. Wien Awards

2015 Wien Awards

The School of American Ballet is pleased to announce the following recipients of the 2015 Mae L. Wien Award:

Yvonne Borree

Joscelyn Dolson
Clara Ruf-Maldonado
Dammiel Cruz

DAMMIEL CRUZ, KAY MAZZO; Photo by Paul Kolnik

YVONNE BORREE was reared in Norfolk, Virginia, where she began her dance training at the Tidewater Ballet Association when she was five years old, following in the footsteps of her ballerina mother Susan Borree, a dancer with NYCB, ABT, and Jerome Robbins’ Ballets: U.S.A. She attended summer sessions at the School of American Ballet for three years and was invited to enter SAB full-time in 1985. In 1987, she became an apprentice with New York City Ballet and was invited to join the corps de ballet in 1988. She was promoted to the rank of soloist in 1993 and to principal in 1997. Ms. Borree performed featured roles in numerous ballets by George Balanchine, Jerome Robbins and Peter Martins and originated a number of roles in works by Mr. Martins, Robert LaFosse and Christopher Wheeldon during her 22-year career with the Company. She became a member of SAB’s faculty in 2008 and retired from performing in June 2010.

JOSCELYN DOLSON followed her older sister into dance and enrolled in ballet, tap, and jazz classes at Sylvia Studio of Dance in Ann Arbor, Michigan, at the age of 4. She subsequently took classes at Ballet Chelsea and Randazzo Dance, where her mother Lila now teaches. Joscelyn attended SAB’s five-week Summer Course in 2009 and 2010 and at the age of 14 was invited to enroll in SAB’s year-round program. Over the past five years, she has progressed from the Intermediate Division to the most advanced girls class, and this year she has also worked as a Children’s Division teaching assistant. She danced corps roles in Walpurgisnacht Ballet and Serenade at the 2013 and 2014 Workshops, respectively, and the “Prayer” solo in Coppélia last year. This year she performs as the Harp in Fanfare. Now 19, Joscelyn will begin her professional career as a corps member with The Royal Danish Ballet this summer.

CLARA RUF-MALDONADO began taking ballet classes at The Ailey School at the age of 3 and performed with her mother in New York-area theater productions as a toddler. When she was six she was cast in Fragments of a Greek Trilogy at La Mama ETC. She enrolled in SAB’s beginners Girls I class at the age of 7 and two years later was cast as Marie in New York City Ballet’s production of George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker, performing the role in both 2005 and 2006. Her subsequent childhood performing experience with NYCB included The Sleeping Beauty, Circus Polka, Harlequinade, Coppélia and a featured part in Double Feature. Over the past 11 years, she has progressed through all divisions of SAB and is now enrolled in the Advanced Division “D” class. Her past Workshop experience includes a principal part in Divertimento No. 15 in 2013 and Coppélia’s “Waltz of the Golden Hours” in 2014. This year, she appears in a pas de deux from The Sleeping Beauty. Now 18, Clara is a graduate of PPAS and is currently enrolled at Fordham University.

DAMMIEL CRUZ, a native of Queens, New York, was born into a dance family. His grandmother Ruth Garrido was a prima ballerina with the Dominican National Ballet, and his mother, a dance teacher, was inspired to move to the U.S. from the Dominican Republic to improve the dance opportunities available to her children. Dammiel enrolled in SAB’s tuition-free Boys Program in 2005 at the age of 8. Over the past 10 years, he has progressed through all divisions of the School, arriving in the Advanced Men’s class in the fall of 2013. He has danced in SAB’s community lecture-demonstration performances and the Student Choreography Workshop for the past two years. Dammiel, now 17, was one of two advanced students given the opportunity by Peter Martins this year to develop his teaching skills by giving a technique class to his peers. He performed a principal role in Serenade at the 2014 Workshop Performances and this year dances in an excerpt from The Sleeping Beauty, partnering fellow Wien Award honoree Clara Ruf-Maldonado.