Dallas Black Dance Theatre Receives Texas Medal Of Arts Award

Texas Medal Of Arts Award
DBDT dancing Tribute by Matthew Rushing as photographed by Sharen Bradford - The Dancing Image.

DALLAS—Texas Cultural Trust named Dallas Black Dance Theatre (DBDT) among 15 Texas Medal of Arts Award Honorees for 2017. The biennial statewide event celebrated Texas’s legends in the Arts during a two-day event in Austin, Texas, February 21-22, 2017.

Dallas Black Dance Theatre is being honored in the field of Arts Education as it celebrates its 40th Anniversary Season. As an additional honor, the dance company performed during the awards show. The gala dinner was hosted by actress, choreographer and Texas native Debbie Allen, a former honoree of the prestigious award.

The dance institution started as a vision of Ann Williams who wanted to inspire minority boys and girls to appreciate dance as an art form. For nearly 40 years, Ms. Williams has directed Dallas Black Dance Theatre from a community-based organization and a semi-professional organization to a full professional dance company that has traveled the world.

Over the years, more than 4 million arts patrons have experienced Dallas Black Dance Theatre as it performed on five continents, in 15 countries and 31 states, including two Olympic Cultural events. The mission of Dallas Black Dance Theatre is to create and produce contemporary modern dance at its highest level of artistic excellence through performances and educational programs that bridge cultures and reach diverse communities.

Texas Medal Of Arts Award Winners

This year’s winners are a diverse group of actors, musicians, dancers, artists, writers, architects, reporters, and philanthropists that include:

Corporate Patron: John Paul & Eloise DeJoria, Paul Mitchell/Patrón Tequila, Austin
Multimedia: Kris Kristofferson, Brownsville
Television: Jaclyn Smith, Houston
Individual Arts Patron: Lynn Wyatt, Houston
Dance: Lauren Anderson, Houston
Music: Yolanda Adams, Houston
Arts Education: Dallas Black Dance Theatre, Dallas
Film: Janine Turner, Euless
Theater: Renée Elise Goldsberry, Houston
Foundation Patron: The Tobin Endowment, San Antonio
Visual Art: Leo Villareal, El Paso
Architecture: Frank Welch, Dallas
Literary: John Phillip Santos, San Antonio
Journalism: Scott Pelley, San Antonio
Lifetime Achievement: Kenny Rogers, Houston

Dallas Black Dance Theater Founder Ann Williams and State Representative Helen Giddings.

Giddings Nominates DBDT

Texas State Representative Helen Giddings, D-DeSoto, nominated DBDT for the critical service they perform for Dallas’ youth and celebrated the announcement.

“The Dallas Black Dance Theatre has inspired a new generation of Texans to participate in dance as a means of expression. Through professional dance concert performances, arts-in-education programs, and community outreach events, the Dallas Black Dance Theatre has made an invaluable impact on the people of Dallas and beyond,” Representative Helen Giddings said.

Dallas Black Dance Theatre has an extensive educational outreach program. During the past four decades, 2.6 million students, grades K-12, have experienced the dance company’s performances and educational programs. DBDT serves more than 20,000 youth in grades K-12 in Dallas-Fort Worth area schools each.

Annually another 40,000 youth and adults are reached through national and international festivals, tours, special performances at universities, social service agencies, professional and corporate organizations, civic events and community venues.

Dallas Black Dance Theatre (DBDT) is the 10th largest minority arts organization in America, the fourth largest black dance company in the nation and the oldest continuously operating professional dance company in the City of Dallas.

For more details on the Texas Medal of Arts gala and activities visit www.texasmedalofarts.org.