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IOTPD Awards Three Dancers With A Philippe Braunschweig Grant

2016 / 07 / 22

The International Organization for the Transition of Professional Dancers (IOTPD) is pleased to announce the 2016 IOTPD Philippe Braunschweig Grant recipients. The annual competitive grant is awarded to a dancer or dancers, at or near the end of their performance careers, to help defray the costs associated with retraining for a second profession. This year the IOTPD was able to provide three dancers with retraining assistance from the IOTPD Philippe Braunschweig Grant.

Naiara Mendioroz is pursuing a Master in Dance Therapy at Codarts University for the Arts in Rotterdam, and is honored to be a recipient of this international grant. “The support of the IOTPD Philippe Braunschweig Grant has given me the opportunity to go one step further in my career. I will therefore, be able to create a better future for myself and to build up a desirable parallel profession”. Ms. Mendioroz is a freelance dance artist who has created and performed across Europe and in the USA. She feels her personal experience of what dance is and what dance can offer will bring added value to the therapeutic process. She plans to continue developing her work with refugees, as well as with women who are victims of domestic violence.

Mark Biocca has spent 12 years dancing with ballet companies in Canada, the UK, Portugal and Hungary. Over the years his own study of GYROTONIC® gave him a passion for the method and enabled him to see how its approach to movement could be of tremendous benefit to dancers in terms of injury prevention and improved recovery. Therefore he is embarking on studies to become a GYROTONIC® Trainer as a parallel career to compliment his other dance work. "The IOTPD has helped me in a time of uncertainty, allowing me to be proud of my artistic life and build a solid future."

Currently a dancer with the Royal Ballet of Flanders, Tom de Jager’s program of study is a Bachelor of Event Management: Music and Entertainment at VIVES in Kortrijk, Belgium. A strong advocate for transition planning, Mr. de Jager has completed courses in communications and business to prepare for his further studies and a second career. “Words cannot express how grateful I am, not only for the IOTPD’s financial support through the 2016 Philippe Braunschweig Grant, but also for the hard work, dedication and inspiration which the IOTPD commits on a daily basis to help dancers like myself. Unfortunately, the big black gap still exists for many dancers around the globe and no matter how well a dancer’s transition is organized it remains a very difficult period in our lives, and that is why the IOTPD is so important to me.”

The annual application deadline for the IOTPD Philippe Braunschweig Grant is April 30. This grant, given to honour the IOTPD’s Founding President, is meant for professional dancers who have had an international career and who do not qualify for transition support from any one of the countries where they have danced. Further details and the grant application are available through the IOTPD website www.iotpd.org.


Helping dancers make necessary transitions into, within, and from professional performing careers since 1985.