The award, one of four presented by the non-profit organization this spring, recognizes Hawkins’ support and promotion of youth in the arts, said Julia A. Pollard, president of the Washington, D.C., chapter of The Society.
Presented at The Society’s Spring Awards Tea in the District, the award highlights the BAA’s mission to provide the community with an environment devoted to the study of classical ballet and complementary activities to encourage the appreciation for music, art, stage production and performance, said Pollard.
Hawkins, who grew up in and now lives in Prince George’s County, attended the Duke Ellington School of Performing Arts and the Kirov Academy, both in the District of Columbia. Before coming to the BAA as artistic director, he performed as a principle dancer with a number of major companies around the world, most recently as a principal dancer with Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas.
“I’ve received a lot of awards myself, but this is the first award I’ve received on behalf of the academy and it means a lot to me,” said Hawkins.
The Society, Incorporated, is dedicated to exposing youth to the arts and promoting their arts activities for the betterment of the community. The volunteer organization also recognizes exceptional young artists by honoring and showcasing their talent and helping to prepare them to succeed in the arts, said Pollard.
The Society’s spring awards honored four individuals who have made significant contributions to the development of youth in the arts in the D.C. area.
Pollard said, besides Hawkins’ teaching and choreography, he volunteers a great deal of his time to helping youth prepare to audition for college scholarships. “He spends a lot of unpaid time” helping youth, she said.