The ceremony for the first edition of the Oscar della Danza has been held at Cinecittà World in Rome.
In Italy, there are the David di Donatello awards for cinema, the Italian Musical Awards, the Franco Abbiati awards for opera, Premio Le Maschere for theatre, and many for literature, but the various dance awards — there are numerous — are often given out to those who are available to dance in a gala or participate in a ceremony, usually called “Career Awards”, or handed out by specialist publications. The Oscar della Danza aims for a more objective approach.
The Artistic Director of the awards, Luciano Cannito, says
If certain Italian dance troupes have had more spectators that others then this, independent of taste, is an undeniable fact. If a dancer has been given leading roles in major theatres, or has won prizes awarded by critics, then this too is a fact. If everyone is talking about a new, exciting talent who, though young, shines more brightly than their contemporaries, that that too is indisputable and again, independent of personal taste.
He also notes the gap between professional dance and that from the large number of private structures and associations. There is a desire, through these awards, to create a bridge between these not-so-distant worlds, rewarding excellence and professionalism with work opportunities and professional contacts.
The awards were presented by Cristiano Ostinelli of the Casa Editrice Ricordi in Milan. The Gala and Award Ceremony were presented by dancer and television personality Rossella Brescia and actor and television presenter Pino Strabioli.
During the day, before the evening event, a competition was held for new talent with monetary prizes as well as job contracts being awarded.
Oscar della Danza 2017
VIRNA TOPPI: soloist, La Scala in Milan – Dancer of the Year.
ALFIO AGOSTINI: critic and founder in 1980 of the magazine Balletto Oggi (now known as Ballet 2000).
AGOSTINO TUCCIARONE: orthopaedic doctor for his work on operations to the knee and specialisation in dance injuries.
MAXIM DEREVIANKO: director and dance videomaker.
GIACOMO MOLINARI: founder of Radio Danza, the first radio station dedicated entirely to dance in Italy.
GIUSEPPE TRAMONTANO: founder of the costume shop of the same name, specialising in dancewear for more than 40 years.
SIMONE AGRO': Rome Opera Ballet – most promising newcomer.
BEPPE MENEGATTI: Career Award (the prize was collected on his behalf by Roger Salas, El Pais dance critic).
BALLETTO DI MILANO: award for the Italian Company with outstanding number of spectators.
ATERBALLETTO: award for the Italian Company with outstanding number of spectators.
DANIELE CIPRIANI ENTERTAINMENT: award for the Italian Company with the largest number of spectators.
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano') about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman's Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia' column for Dancing Times magazine.