April 2, 2002
MICHELE WILES WINS ERIK BRUHN PRIZE
Michele Wiles, a Soloist with American Ballet Theatre, won first prize at the Sixth International Competition for the Erik Bruhn Prize held in Toronto on Monday, May 20.
In competing for the Erik Bruhn Prize, Wiles danced Grand Pas Classique and the bedroom pas de deux from Act II of Manon. She was partnered by David Hallberg, a member of the corps de ballet of American Ballet Theatre.
Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Wiles received a full scholarship to the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington, D.C. where she studied from 1991 to 1997. She was a Gold Medal winner at the 18th International Ballet Competition in Varna, a Bronze Medal winner in Nagoya, Japan and a finalist at the Paris International Dance Competition.
Wiles joined American Ballet Theatre‚Äôs Studio Company in 1997 and became a member of ABT‚Äôs corps de ballet the following year. She was promoted to Soloist in August 2000. Her roles with the Company include the Siren in Prodigal Son, the pas de trios in Swan Lake, the fourth movement in Symphony in C and leading roles in Black Tuesday, Theme and Variations and Mark Morris‚Äô Gong.
The International Competition for the Erik Bruhn Prize is held every two years and was conceived by Erik Bruhn prior to his death in 1986. Bruhn, a leading male dancer of his generation and former Artistic Director of the National Ballet of Canada, established the competition for the encouragement and recognition of young dancers. The prize is awarded to two dancers, one male and one female, between the ages of 18 and 23. The competitors represent the four companies with whom Bruhn was most closely associated. This year the competition was expanded to include Stuttgart Ballet and San Francisco Ballet, as well as American Ballet Theatre, The Royal Danish Ballet and the National Ballet of Canada.