Arts outreach organization Off The Lane has established The Ann Reinking Scholarship, taking a cue from the late Broadway performer and choreographer's own life story and offering a $5,000 grant to a young dancer moving to New York City. The funds will help them in their artistic endeavors, much as Reinking herself traveled cross-country from Seattle to start her own career.
Reinking would go on to become a confidant and romantic partner of director-choreographer Bob Fosse, making star turns on stage in Chicago and Sweet Charity among others, choreographing the former's long-running Broadway revival herself in Fosse's style and winning a Tony Award. Reinking passed away in December 2020.
The scholarship will be open to dancers of all disciplines, including Broadway, modern, jazz, and ballet, with the first award scheduled to be given in November. Submissions will be accepted beginning in May.
"I believe Annie would have loved having her name on the Ann Reinking Scholarship Program," says Reinking's husband and scholarship advisory board member Peter Talbert. "Like so many young dancers coming to New York, she struggled to find a foothold in a strange city. Short of money and friends, Annie persevered and found her way forward, thanks to some helping hands. This program will offer others following in her footsteps that helping hand, to ensure that they can succeed in their desire to make their dream come true. That’s a legacy worthy of her name and reputation."
Joining Talbert on the scholarship's advisory board will be Hinton Battle, Gregory Butler, Gary Chryst, Mindy Cooper, Dylis Croman, Charlotte d'Amboise, Erzebet-Liz Foldi, Joel Grey, Marilu Henner, Bebe Neuwirth, Chita Rivera, Tommy Tune, William Whitener, and Chris Reinking Stuart.
For more information on The Ann Reinking Scholarship and Off The Lane's other programs, visit OffTheLane.org.