Each year, the Dance Council of North Texas celebrates the accomplishments of individuals for their contributions to dance. The awards are named for renowned professionals in the North Texas dance community and recognize excellence at all levels, including lifetime achievement to dance, artistic excellence in dance, outstanding service to dance and dance education.
Elizabeth Gillaspy, director of TCU’s School for Classical & Contemporary Dance, is the 2016 recipient of the Larry White Excellence in Dance Education Award.
“It is always an honor to be recognized for one’s work, and this award reflects my true passions—dance education, training and choreography,” said Gillaspy. “The Dance Council is vital to the North Texas and South Central regions for the diverse programming it creates and the numerous learning, performing and community building opportunities it provides. I am profoundly grateful for and moved by this recognition.”
Gillaspy began her ballet training in Dortmund and Heidelberg, Germany, where her father sang in the opera. After studying at the North Carolina School of the Arts and American Ballet Theater School, she toured and performed with the Atlanta Ballet, the Atlanta Ballet Chamber Ensemble, North Shore Music Theater and Casa Manana. She established the first high school dance program in the Fort Worth Independent School District and is the recipient of several awards, including the Dance Educator of the Year from the Texas Association of Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance and National Dance Association. Gillaspy joined TCU’s faculty in 1999 and has served as director since 2014.
The School for Classical & Contemporary Dance blends artistic integrity and technical excellence with academic challenge. It was the first university in the United States to offer the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in ballet.