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The Valrene Tweedie Scholarship Fund has been established in memory of our beloved Valrene Tweedie O.A.M. who dedicated her life to the world of dance. The scholarship is aimed at young dancers pursuing full time vocational dance training at a National Council recognised dance training establishment, where their attendance will be compromised due to financial hardship.

The Scholarship makes available $10,000 bi-annually which will be distributed at National Councils, the Selection Committee and Trustees discretion. Scholarships will be awarded to worthy applicants on merit. Full and part scholarships may be awarded.

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Athol Willoughby and Valrene Tweedie in Tweedies’s production of Francesca da Rimini. National Theatre Ballet, 1955. Photo: Walter Stringer. Personal collection of Athol Willoughby

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Congratulations to Arainn Pillay, recipient of the 2023 scholarship.

Cecchetti teacher: Robyn Ross

School: Tanya Pearson Academy 

State: NSW

Past Recipients


The Trustees of the Valrene Tweedie Fund are delighted to announce Joshua Ballinger as the recipient of the scholarship. Joshua is a current student studying year 12 at the Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School. He took his first Cecchetti class at age two and has studied with teachers including Trudy Harris, Lisa Pyke, Justine Morris, Carole Oliver OAM, Anne Butler, Laura Kinross, Melanie West and Ben Ho. Congratulations Joshua, we look forward to hearing of your future accomplishments.


The Trustees were delighted in awarding the 4th Scholarship to Lily Minchenko


3rd Scholarship Fund awarded to Joshua Price


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On July 11th, the Trustees had great pleasure in presenting the second Scholarship to an extremely talented young dancer, Rebecca Blenkinsop, during the annual Cecchetti Conference this year. Rebecca is a student at VCASS at present whilst continuing her Cecchetti training and was selected by the Panel appointed by the Trustees consisting of Juliet Burnett, Margaret Illmann, Marilyn Jones M.B.E, David McAllister A.M. and Athol Willoughby O.A.M, all dancers who had long associations with Miss Tweedie.

Rebecca was awarded the Most Promising Dancer at the Cecchetti International Competition in USA last year, and was a finalist in the Prix de Lausanne earlier this year. This is where Rebecca was offered a place at The Royal Ballet School in London, but was unable to accept due to the expenses involved. The Valrene Tweedie Scholarship has enabled her to accept this place and she will be leaving Australia in early September to fulfil her dreams. We are sure that Valrene would agree that Rebecca is a most worthy recipient of the Award established in her name and we wish her every success in her future.


Georgia Swann inaugaral winner of the scholarship.

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