Pola Nirenska Annual Prize

Press – Dance Magazine

2001 Pola Nirenska Award for Outstanding Contribution to Dance ($5000). The Award is chosen by a committee of non-affiliated dance professionals.  The awards, established in 1993 after Pola Nirenska’s death, are presented by Washington Performing Arts Society.  The award was received following her company’s performance of Aurora/2001: Dance of the Auroras – Fire in the Sky at GW’s Lisner Auditorium on Thursday, February 15, 2001 at 8:00 pm.  Maida Withers is known for her innovative choreography anbd artistic expression.

“One reason Maida Withers just won a “Pola” (D.C.’s dance award named after the late Pola Nirenska) for 

outstanding contribution to dance is that Withers has a Weltanschauung.  The German term for “world view,” seems apt because hers is not just a point of view but a weighty world perspective. She believes that the mechanical and the natural belong to each other and must be a part of art.  Over the years, Wither’s dance works have Guardians - Adam Peiperlinvolved lasers and computers, deserts and skies, and dozens of other inventions and environments.  She celebrates them, uses, them, and sometimes reuses them in new ways.  This choreographer is committed to being on the foreftont.     George Jackson, Dance Magazine