Q & A with YoungArts award recipient Georgia Ehrlich


Photo credit: Gúzman Rosado

Senior Georgia Ehrlich poses for a photoshoot in Israel during her summer program where she explored new dance styles. Ehrlich spent this past summer choreographing, dancing and learning from experts around the world.

By Rose Sarner, Culture Editor

Last fall, senior Georgia Ehrlich received the 2023 Honorable Mention in Dance/Choreography from YoungArts, a highly-regarded national arts competition for high school students. Ehrlich, who has been dancing since she was 3-years-old, received the award for two choreographic works: a duet called “Disentanglement” and a solo called “Klezmer Night.”

As a result, in the spring, she will be given the opportunity to participate in an in-person pilot program held in Miami, Florida, as well as virtual professional development seminars with fellow YoungArts award winners. In addition to receiving this honorable mention, The Oracle sat down with Ehrlich to talk about her experience at the YoungArts awards and her plans for the future. 

What made you decide to compete for the YoungArts award? 

Georgia Ehrlich [GE]: I’ve known about YoungArts for a while being in the dance community, but it was really brought to my attention by a teacher of mine, a mentor of mine, and she suggested that I, along with filming a bunch of pre-screened videos for college applications, take a couple of those videos and submit them to YoungArts of my own choreography.

What inspired the duet and solo that you received the awards for? 

[GE]:  The big inspiration for both of the pieces was a trip I took this summer to Israel. During this trip, I explored a new style of dance that is native to a choreographer at a company called Butch Sheva. His name is Ohad Naharin, and he created a style called Goenka, which is something I’d never done before. I fell in love with the essence of the style and also just Klezmer music in general. So, the solo and the duet are put to more Middle Eastern sounding music, inspired by Middle Eastern culture and inspired by the feelings generated by that trip. 

What emotions did you feel after winning this award?

[GE]: It was really exciting. I’ve never really been recognized for my choreography on any sort of professional or artistic panel so it was cool knowing that people appreciate my work. I’ve been choreographing since I was 12 — doing my solos for competitions. So it was sort of a cool histologic retrospective moment.

What are your plans moving forward? 

[GE]: I am choreographing for Archer’s Night of Dance, which should be fun. I’m debating thinking about doing another large project this year, in terms of choreography. I’m also heading to Atlanta in a couple of days for a dancing job for a film, which is extremely exciting. So, that’s another really cool opportunity that I am excited to begin. Also, I’m heading to school next year, and I’ll be double majoring in dance and something else. Currently, I’m thinking it’s going to be dancing and philosophy, but I’m not 100% sure about the philosophy part. I am looking forward to exploring, and I am hoping to continue to choreograph and work in college and post grad.