Talent Trust grants $44,000 in Awards at 2020 Special Awards Ceremony
K'JIPUKTUK/HALIFAX, NS - The Nova Scotia Talent Trust (NSTT) recognized their 2020 scholarship and Special Award recipients at 2 p.m. on Sunday, December 13, 2020, virtually in a ceremony which included greetings by His Honour The Honourable Arthur J. LeBlanc, ONS, QC, Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia.
Created to support the career of contralto Portia White 76 years ago, the Talent Trust has continued to support talented Nova Scotian artists as they pursue their studies toward establishing professional careers in the arts.
Halifax dancer Sahara Nyathi received the $1,500 Talent Trust Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Artistic Achievement, the NSTT’s highest honour for a student in any discipline. Nyathi studies ballet at the Maritime Dance Academy (Halifax).
Presented for the first time in 2013, the two 2011 Canada Games Young Artist of Excellence Awards, valued at $10,000 each, will be awarded to any recipient, regardless of age, from any artistic discipline, who best exemplifies the qualities embraced by the Nova Scotia Talent Trust, that of the utmost commitment, promise, exceptional technique, talent and the highest achievement of excellence, someone who demonstrates the passion and drive to become a professional Nova Scotia artist in their field of discipline. These two awards will be granted every December until 2022 and are the legacy of the 2011 Canada Games Young Artists of Excellence Program.
In 2020, the two $10,000 awards were received by Dartmouth flutist Amelia Bruce and creative writer Amanda Peters from Falmouth.
Amelia Bruce (Dartmouth), 2020 recipient of a 2011 Canada Games Young Artist of Excellence Award, is currently completing her final semester of studies (Master of Music/Flute Performance) at McGill Schulich School of Music (Montreal, Quebec).
Amanda Peters (Falmouth), 2020 recipient of a 2011 Canada Games Young Artist of Excellence Award, is completing her Master in Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the Institute of American Indian Arts (Santa Fe, New Mexico).
Today, the Talent Trust had the pleasure to present two new awards.
The Sheila K. Piercey (Legacy) Award honours the life of Sheila K. Piercey, who wasan accomplished soprano, teacher, mentor, beloved aunt, and loyal friend to many. The award will go to a voice student.
The Dr. James Burchill Award has been made possible by Dr. James Burchill. Dr. Burchill is a former Talent Trust recipient (1958 through 1961) in organ studies. He created the award to give back to the arts community. The award will be given, if merited, to an organist, choral or instrumental conductor or, if there is no suitable applicant in either of these fields, to a student of another musical instrument or voice.
Opera singer Laura Johnston (Prospect Bay) is the recipient of the $2000 Sheila K. Piercey (Legacy) Award in voice studies. Johnston is currently studying Voice (Opera) at Memorial University, Master of Music (St. John’s, Newfoundland). (The Sheila K. Piercey Award is supported through a generous bequest by the late Sheila Piercey.)
Pianist Carmen Peng (Wolfville) is the recipient of the $8000 Dr. James Burchill Award for an organist, choral or instrumental conductor or a student of another musical instrument or voice. Peng is studying privately with music teacher John Hanson. (The award is supported by former Talent Trust scholarship recipient and organist Dr. James Burchill through a $220,000 Bank Bond donation to the NSTT Foundation.)
There are eleven more Special Award recipients, each of whom demonstrates the exceptional potential to become a professional artist. We're pleased to introduce them here.
Pianist Devin Huang (Bedford) is the recipient of the $1,000 Peggy Corkum/Musique Royale Legacy Award. Huang studies privately with Lynn Stodola. (Award supported by Barbara Butler, Musique Royale, and friends of Peggy Corkum.)
Visual artist Ada Denil (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,500 The Susan Wood Award in visual arts. Denil is currently studying sculpting and drawing at NSCAD University in Halifax. (Award supported by family and friends of Susan Wood and Visual Arts Nova Scotia.)
Literary artist Sara Leslie (Dartmouth) is the recipient of the $1,500 RBC Emerging Artist Award. Leslie studies Creative Nonfiction (Master of Fine Arts) at University of King’s College (Halifax). (Award supported by RBC Emerging Artist Program.)
French horn player Mimisu Lee (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,000 Yue Lih “Lee” and Marion Kuo Award for exceptional commitment and potential in music as an instrumentalist. Lee is currently in private study with Christopher Gongos. (Award supported by Marion Kuo and Earl Wadden.)
Visual artist Pamela Juarez (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,000 Charlotte Wilson-Hammond/Visual Arts Nova Scotia Award. Juarez currently studies textile art at NSCAD University (Halifax). (Award supported by Charlotte Wilson-Hammond and Visual Arts Nova Scotia.)
Opera singer Abigail Sinclair (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,000 Talent Trust's Portia White Award for voice. Sinclair spent the summer 2020 studying at the Patti and Allan Herbert Frost School of Music Virtual Salzburg Program (Coral Gables, Florida). (Award supported by the Music-in-Medicine and Humanities-HEALS Program, Dalhousie University.)
Ballet dancer Aidan Vaudreuil (Lower Sackville) is the recipient of the $2,000 Robert George Jackson Award for dance. Vaudreuil is attending the Royal Winnipeg Ballet School (Winnipeg, Manitoba). (Award supported by the Jackson family.)
Kevin Munroe (Sydney) is the recipient of the $500 Theatre Nova Scotia Award for theatre. Munroe will be studying acting at George Brown College (Toronto, Ontario). (Award supported by Theatre Nova Scotia.)
Composer Taylor MacGillivray (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,000 Kenneth Elloway Award for composition. MacGillivray spent the summer 2020 attending the Lunenburg Academy of Music (LAMP, Lunenburg). (Award supported by the Elloway family.)
Ballet dancer Julia Barkhouse(Dartmouth) is the recipient of the $1,000 Janice Merritt Flemming Award and is currently studying at Canada’s National Ballet School in Toronto, Ontario. (Award supported by the Flemming family.)
Cellist India Gailey (Halifax) is the recipient of the $1,000 Raymond Simpson Award for music. In January 2021 India will be studying Jazz Improvisation, with Gary Burton, through Berklee Online (Boston, Massachusetts). (Award supported by the Simpson family.)
In addition to the Special Awards announced today, the Nova Scotia Talent Trust gave out scholarships to 67 recipients earlier this year. You can find a list of the 2020 Nova Scotia Talent Trust scholarship recipients below.
The NSTT’s scholarship application deadline date for Spring/Summer study is March 1, 2021. The deadline for Fall/Winter study is May 1, 2021.
About the Nova Scotia Talent Trust Since 1944, the Talent Trust has provided more than $2 million to over 1,000 Nova Scotians, primarily young people, who have demonstrated talent and potential to become professional artists in theatre, dance, fine craft and design, music, circus arts, media, film, literary, and visual arts. There is no other comparable organization in the country. In 2019, the Talent Trust celebrated its 75th anniversary year featuring former scholarship recipients with a travelling art exhibition, pop-up events in theatre, music, dance, film screenings and more.
The NSTT is supported by individual donors like Margaret and David Fountain and the 2011 Canada Games Legacy Fund, RBC Foundation, The Craig Foundation,, Musique Royale, Visual Arts Nova Scotia, Theatre Nova Scotia, Debut Atlantic, immediaC, the Creative Nova Scotia Leadership Council, BoyneClarke, Code+Mortar, NSTT Foundation, Dalhousie Music in Medicine HEALS Program, Halifax Central Library, Cecilia Concerts, Craft Nova Scotia, Black Cultural Centre for NS, CIOE 97.5 Community Radio, and Arts Nova Scotia. NSTT is pleased to work in partnership with the province to develop and promote our cultural resources for all Nova Scotians.