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Current Miller Arts Scholars Award Recipients

Class of 2018

Luc Cianfarani

Luc Cianfarani, Music

Rising Third-Year Award
Attending the 2016 Washington International Piano Festival
Classical music is an industry. In order to progress in this competitive industry I need to start making connections and entering competitions that will allow me to advance my career. I believe that receiving a $1500 arts award to attend the Washington International Piano Festival will not only allow me to grow as a musician, but also enable me to meet world renowned pianists and compete against my peers from all over the world.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Summer Composition Internship
While I still have aspirations of becoming a great pianist, I now have aspirations of becoming a composer. This desire stemmed from a classical improvisation class I took while studying abroad. In this class, I learned that I had a compositional voice and that I enjoyed creating new music. This summer I hope to grow and develop my compositional abilities. In order to do this, I have secured an internship with composer and orchestrator Chad Cannon in Pasadena, California.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Alexandra D'Elia

Alexandra D'Elia, Dance

Rising Third-Year Award
A Dança Portuguesa
With assistance from the Miller Arts Scholars Third Year Arts Award, I will spend the spring semester of 2017 studying abroad in Lisbon at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa (UNL), through a language and culture program with CIEE, and I will conduct research on the different dance styles taught and practiced in Portuguese culture. I will take dance classes at a studio called STEPS: escola de dança e artes do espectáculo. STEPS offers dance classes in many different dance styles: Kizomba, Semba, Funaná, Eastern and Indian dance, Tango, Tap Dance, Forró, Samba, Salsa and Cuban Music. What interests me about this diverse group of classes is that each dance style is unique to a specific Portuguese territory.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Wesley Diener

Wesley Diener, Music

Rising Third-Year Award
FAVA: Immersion in French Opera, Art Song, and Language
I am applying for an Arts Award to travel to Perigeuex, France and participate in the Franco-American Vocal Academy program, where I will sing a full opera role and work intensely on French music and language. The Franco American Vocal Academy (FAVA) centers its mission on performance opportunities for young singers.  While there are many summer opera programs that offer similar opportunities for technical training, FAVA distinguishes itself with a valuable combination of technical achievement, immersive language instruction, and most importantly, significant performance opportunities. 
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Bel Canto in Tuscany: Learning the Italian Art of Vocal Technique and Expression
I am applying for a Miller Art Scholars Rising Fourth-Year Award to support my participation in Bel Canto in Tuscany, an intensive and immersive opera training program in Italy. This program, focused on advanced study in Italian vocal traditions, features a month of comprehensive vocal, musical, dramatic, and linguistic study.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Vivien Fergusson

Vivien Fergusson, Dance

Rising Third-Year Award
Bates Dance Festival
This year, the Bates Dance Festival will be offering classes from a variety of dance disciplines including modern, ballet, jazz, afro-modern, Spiraldynamik, Pilates, yoga, and contact improvisation. There will also be more academically based courses on choreography, movement and writing, the business of dance, film and media, and natural body systems. Classes will be taught by extremely gifted faculty that are powerful forces in their respective corners of the dance community, and they will be accompanied by live musical artists.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Kirsten Hemrich

Kirsten Hemrich, Studio Art

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Ecstatic Art and Travel
As an undergraduate student about to undergo my final summer before graduation, I fully intend to devote myself to artmaking and travel. I am proposing a two part project which will take course over four months. The first part will be an intensive month of travel abroad. During this month, I intend to make a book of visual poetry and drawings which will document my experience and also explore the ecstasy that is inherent to travel--ecstasy being derived from word, ‘ekstasis,’ meaning: “movement of the soul outside the body.” I will visually and poetically explore the transient, exciting, almost spiritual experience of ecstasy.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Annalee Jackson

Annalee Jackson, Studio Art

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Documenting the Creative and Immersive Process: Reflecting on Cultural Barriers through Arts
My goal is to combine both art and education my two areas of academic interest in a project, which will document my thinking and inform my understanding of a different culture. Throughout this reflective process I will draw on documentation from my travel including: textural rubbings, both personal and academic journaling, sketching, and photography. In the next year, I propose to explore place, barriers, and reflection/translation as themes in my art utilizing exhaustive documentation and reflection from my time abroad in Italy.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Steven Johnson

Steven Johnson, Drama

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Theatre Through The Looking Glass
I am requesting funding for photography equipment that will allow me to improve upon my portfolio, and study how the camera’s focal length and framing chosen for a shot shapes the narrative of the image.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Taylor Lamb

Taylor Lamb, Drama

Rising Fourth-Year Award
A Summer at Stella Adler Studio of Acting (New York City)
I have been fortunate enough to be accepted to Stella Adler Studio of Acting’s ten-week conservatory. My primary goal in attending this program is to further develop my skills as an actress, preparing me for a career for the stage, film, and television.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Emma Lewis

Emma Lewis, Studio Art

Rising Third-Year Award
Study of Tangible Dialogue
Communicating meaning through an artistic work is difficult for all artists. How can one translate a personal idea that seems innate, obvious, and pure to another? As an artist that relies heavily upon memory for works, I often think about how I can speak clearly and simply in my art despite personal symbolic connections I wish to incorporate in the piece. Exemplifying this idea, I often connect aphasia and artist purpose. Aphasia, a neurological disorder caused by damage to the language center of the brain, prevents affected individuals from finding and saying the accurate words to express a clear idea. I have the intent, however, the idea in its tangible form does not have the right language.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Instantaneous forms and memory
I propose to attend the workshop Print Composite: Tradition & Innovation at Anderson Ranch in Aspen, Colorado from August 14th through August 18th 2017. I will then use the skills I developed in the workshop towards a creative project in printmaking utilizing a combination of digital and traditional printing methods. I have already been chosen by UVA Arts faculty to receive a University of Virginia scholarship covering tuition for the workshop Print Composite: Tradition & Innovation at Anderson Ranch and have been accepted into the workshop.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Nicholas Milkovich

Nicholas Milkovich, Studio Art

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Study Abroad in Italy
For my rising Fourth Year artist grant, I propose participation in the UVA in Italy: Photography and Contemporary Art History study abroad program. This is a program I have wanted to participate in since I first was accepted into UVa as a First Year Student. It has always been my dream to study in Italy, but my course scheduling next permitted me to take a full semester away from Charlottesville. This summer program is a chance for me to achieve my goals and dream while maintaining my studies and becoming a better Studio Artist.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Josephine Miller

Josephine Miller, Music

Rising Third-Year Award
Speech Pathology In Practice: Vocal Health and Vocal Myths in Todays Singers
This summer of 2016, I would like to put into use my two majors: Speech Language Pathology and Music (vocal performance). I plan on shadowing a Speech Pathologist in Yorktown, Virginia, Ann Cyptar, who focuses mostly on patients with vocal health issues (singers, actors, etc.) and occasionally with patients suffering from head and neck cancer. To further my studies, I would also try to shadow a few other speech pathologists who work primarily with patients suffering from more common speech disorders and stroke patients. In an effort to truly understand the usefulness and importance of Speech Pathology in practice as a singer, I will also be attending two vocal workshops/performance opportunities. The first would be the Classical Singers Workshop at Peabody University from July 6-10 in Baltimore, Maryland. The second would be participating in the Bethesda Summer Music Festival in Bethesda, Maryland from June 20 to July 3.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
A Musical Journey: Nationally & Internationally
This summer of 2017, I would like to pursue my performance- based career goals and continue developing both my skills as an individual and as part of an ensemble (a key part of being a performer). I hope to work with past and new teachers in an attempt to better understand and exercise my voice, all the meanwhile gaining valuable insight from the professionals at the programs.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Julian Sanchez

Julian Sanchez, Drama

Rising Third-Year Award
Drama Abroad: A Personal Exploration of British Classical Acting Pedagogy 
I am proposing to use the Arts Award money to help fund my studies at one of two of Britain’s most esteemed acting institutions: the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), or the London Academy of Musical and Dramatic Art (LAMDA). I leave the possibilities open between the two because I’m not sure which one I will get into, but I assure you they are both very worthy programs in their own right.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Braelyn Schenk

Braelyn Schenk, Dance

Rising Third-Year Award
Apples and Oranges
I am interested in finding bridges between music and dance, exploring their capability to interpret physical and cultural landscapes, and through that, codifying a methodology that allows dancers and musicians to enter into a deeper understanding of their relationship to each other, to place, to physical spaces, and to the past.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
A Musical Journey: Nationally & Internationally
My proposed project centers on a high intensity, hands-on involvement with Cleveland, OH nonprofit, Fresh Camp. Fresh Camp and the Refresh Collective exists to enliven Cleveland through “creative arts, community engagement and youth development.” The camp uses project-based hip-hop-in-action programs to motivate, educate, and activate students in personal and community development. Students learn skills in digital music composition, lyric writing, recording arts, and public performance. The creative, song writing process allows students to express experiences, perspectives, problems and solutions. Founder Dee Jay Doc and his team listen carefully to what students are saying and help give them opportunities to create “fresh action” such as planting new neighborhood gardens, tasting fresh food, silk screening t-shirts, and writing songs that promote the neighborhood farmer's market. As an intern, I will have the privilege of working, learning and living in and through these efforts.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Micah Watson

Micah Watson, Drama

Rising Third-Year Award
Black Entertainment Television Networks Internship
I plan to intern with Black Entertainment Television Networks. As a Programming Intern, I will have the opportunity to create original programming, act as an on-set production assistant and study with the Writing Team. I will be able to be a part of the creative process of the television industry from beginning to end. Specifically, I will be under the tutelage of Senior Vice President, Connie Orlando in New York, New York.  It is important that I learn the systems of the television and film industry so that, in the future, I will know the best ways to share my art.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
Film Making Project
Art is an articulation of the soul. It is a way to reinterpret the things that we have words to describe and to translate the things that words cannot explain. Often, creation is cathartic—it is cleansing, nourishing, and freeing for the body, mind and spirit. For many people, including myself art is a method of practicing self-care. I think that it is important to practice art in this way; art for the sake of the artist is a completely valid and sometimes necessary practice. However, as an African-American artist, I do not not have the luxury of creating selfishly. As a participant in the ongoing Liberation Struggle, as a result of the political condition of Blackness assigned to me at birth, I must use the tools that I have been gifted with to work towards Freedom. It is my duty.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Yuchen Xie

Yuchen Xie, Studio Art

Rising Third-Year Award
A Study of Chinese Seal Carving
During the summer of 2016, from early July to late August, I plan to officially enroll in the course with the artist every week and meanwhile I’ll spend a considerable amount of time exploring the art of seal carving by myself. I’ll go to exhibitions with my teacher and connect to other seal carving artists. I’ll read the history of this art form to study the styles of renowned artists and examine their techniques to develop my style. I will write up an analysis based on my study and I will have ten carved seals of different styles. I’ll also explore different materials. For instance, I’ll try harder stones instead of the relatively soft bloodstone.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Rising Fourth-Year Award
The Interpretation of Dream
My objective for this project is to combine my personal experience, my interest in psychology, my passion for art and my love for video and film techniques to create a dreamscape film about how reality is interpreted in my dreams, how dreams constructs a unique world meanwhile revealing my identity, and what I learn from them. The film would be a response to my personal experience and my own consciousness.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)


Class of 2019

Corinne James

Corrinne James, Studio Art

Rising Third-Year Award
Area
Area will be a multimedia project which will engage with audio and visual elements in order to capture emotions without using language as a tool. It will rely on audiovisual components to reproduce reflective human consciousness. Area will consist of five different films with five different self-produced scores. All of the audio produced will be created with an analogue synthesizer and all of the visuals will be shot on 16mm film
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Michelle Miles

Michelle Miles, Studio Art

Rising Third-Year Award
Enabling the Universe
I see the outcome of this project as a collections of short films that explore the organic movement and behavior of materials such as inks, pigments, powders, oils, and soaps – with room for the discovery and use of new materials throughout the process. These are examples of some of the required materials, along with glassware such as plates and petri dishes. The specific equipment I will need includes a macro lens, a tripod, underwater film equipment, and studio lights.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Anna Morgan

Anna Morgan, Studio Art

Rising Third-Year Award
Explorations in Printmaking
The objectives of my project are to participate in various workshops and obtain studio space at a printmaking studio over the summer, achieve technical fluency within printmaking, and to produce a body of work based on these and past experiences.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)

Emily Schmid

Emily Schmid, Drama

Rising Third-Year Award
Social Justice Theatre
I hope to accomplish these goals through attending a Joker Training Workshop through Theater of the Oppressed NYC. I then intend to conduct more research on the methodology, keeping in mind the goal to present a mini workshop at UVA in order to explore the connection between the social issues that the university faces and theater. I hope to apply the knowledge acquired through attending this workshop and conducting research into Theater of the Oppressed by eventually creating a devised piece at UVA which responds to the social and political issues that the university faces.
(Original Proposal) (Project Outcome)