Thanks to donations made to The School and its endowment, dancers are eligible for scholarships if able to prove financial need. To help as many dancers as possible, most scholarships are partial. Full scholarships require especially strong evidence of financial need. All scholarship recipients agree to serve as exemplary Pillow community members and fulfill needed campus duties.

How to Apply
If applicant is a dependent, financial information must be for parent/guardian.

2.  Proof of Annual Income
     U.S. residents: Copy of first page of most recent IRS 1040/1040A form.
     If exempt from filing, or a non-U.S. resident: copy of earning statements for July,
     October, and December 2015.

3.  Written Statement of Need
(a) Describe your current financial situation and explain why financial aid is necessary: Provide clear and accurate information about current employment and financial obligations, such as monthly bills and debt.

 ( b) List additional funding source(s): Excluding the Pillow scholarship request, identify confirmed and pending gifts, grants, loans, or other funding for possible program fee use. If pending, list amount requested and expected notification date.

     (c) Work Experience: List name, title, address, phone number, your position, and earning for current and past two employers

     (d) List previous aid/prizes/grants/scholarship awards: Include granting institution, name of aid/award, amount, and year received.

4.  Attach documentation that supports your written statement such as: 
childcare invoices, debt counseling statements, financial aid records, food stamp registration, rental agreements, scholarship awards, etc.

2016 Merit Scholarship Opportunities 
All dancers are eligible for a Jacob's Pillow Scholarship as described above. Scholarships below go to dancers meeting the described criteria.

  • Lorna Strassler Award for Student Excellence: One full scholarship to attend any 2016 program and a cash gift to one dancer demonstrating performance excellence and exemplary dedication to the field.
  • Marcia Simon Kaplan Scholarship: One full scholarship to attend the 2016 Contemporary Program is awarded to a New World School of the Arts dancer. Miami Audition January 10.
  • American Dance Guild Erna Lindner-Gilbert/Jacob's Pillow Scholarship: One full scholarship to attend the 2016 Improv Traditions & Innovations: From Ring Shout to Blues to Jazz Program. American Dance Guild membership required,

Lorna Strassler Award for Student Excellence
Each year, a young artist enrolled in The School receives material support and career encouragement in the form of a full program scholarship and $2,500 cash. Established in 2004 by former Pillow Board member Lorna Strassler and her husband, recipients must be able to demonstratre performance excellence and exemplary dedication to the field. 

To be considered, submit an online video even if auditioning in person. 

Awardees to date:

Therese Davis 2015 Ballet Program, dances with Grand Rapids Ballet
Amber Pickens 2014 Contemporary Program, dances with Cirque du Soleil's PARAMOUR on Broadway and Keigwin+Company; founder of Art Belongs to the People 
Samantha Barriento 2013 & 2011 Contemporary Program, dances with Ailey II
Theresa J Murray 2012 Jazz/Musical Theatre Dance, West Coast-based freelance dancer, actress, and singer
Craig Black 2011 Contemporary, dances with Aspen Santa Fe Ballet
Calvin Royal III 2010 Ballet, dances with American Ballet Theatre and Daniil Simkin's INTENSIO 
I-Fen Lin 2009 Contemporary, freelances as a choreographer and dancer; on faculty at Taipei National University of the Arts, School of Dance
Lindsey Holmes 2008 Contemporary, third season with The Lion King on Broadway
Shannon Kline 2007 Jazz/Musical Theatre Dance, publishing her second book of poetry with Nirala Press 
Min Li 2006 Contemporary, freelances as a choreographer and fashion designer
Avi Scher 2005 Ballet, freelance choreographer and teacher; works for Clinton Global Initiative 
Winston Dynamite Brown 2004 Contemporary, dances with Company Stefanie Batten Bland


" of the most telling experiences of my life. I can honestly say that I'm leaving [the Pillow] with a good feeling in my heart and an optimistic vision of my future...the Ballet Program at Jacob's Pillow has helped me to be better and succeed."
- Calvin Royal III, 2010 Ballet Program and Lorna Strassler Award for Student Excellence Awardee

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