William Scott

Dance Theatre of Harlem

From left to right: William Scott, Homer Bryant, Samuel Smalls, and Roman Brooks.

William Scott attended the High School for the Performing Arts in New York City. Among his teachers were David Wood of the Martha Graham Company and Gertrude Schurr. Schurr sent Scott for additional study to the Richard Thomas-Barbara Fallis school, where he was awarded a scholarship. During summers he also studied, again on scholarship, at the Graham School and the Harkness Ballet. At his graduation from Performing Arts, much to his own astonishment, he was presented with the coveted Helen Tamiris Award, and the entire graduating class flipped their caps in the air in his honor. Scott danced for a while with Stuart Hodes’ Ballet Teams troupe.

Scott was one of the founding members of Dance Theatre of Harlem. He performed with the company in their first performance at Jacob’s Pillow and was a principal dancer with Dance Theatre of Harlem for seven years. In 1981 he served as assistant artistic director of the Capitol Ballet for a brief stint when called in from New York by founder-director Doris Jones to help whip the troupe back into shape after the departure of his predecessor, Keith Lee.


Arthur Mitchell’s Dance Theatre of Harlem, Jacob’s Pillow
Rhythmetron Photo, Jacob’s Pillow
Ballet in Black: Louis Johnson and African american Vernacular Humour in Ballet, Thomas F. Defrantz

See also:

Great Scott, The Washington Post
Capitol Ballet, The Washington Post
Arthur Mitchell: Harlem’s Ballet Trailblazer, Columbia University Libraries

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