School of Dance

Studio 301 in the Stevie Eller Dance Theatre at the University of Arizona is now officially named in honor of our two School of Dance visionaries … the Melissa Lowe and Jory Hancock Dance Studio. 

In conjunction with a renaming of the studio, over $350,000 were raised for this initiative from 71 donors and the funds will be used for student scholarships and to continue the legacy of the students performing a repertoire of masterworks from major choreographers in the field.

The husband-and-wife team announced their retirement from the University of Arizona and the School of Dance last spring after 34 years on campus.

“You’ve brought incredible recognition to the university,” said President Robert C. Robbins at the naming ceremony Feb. 21. 

>> GIVE | Jory Hancock and Melissa Lowe Dance Fund for Excellence

Andrew Schulz, vice president for the arts, commented on how Hancock and Lowe built a national reputation for the school through its triple track program and curriculum of ballet, jazz and modern, which led to “a performance season that really rivals that of many professional companies.”

“In this studio is where the everyday work happens,” said Schulz. “It’s where technique is honed. It’s where ideas take shape into and through movement. Melissa and Jory brought their passion, vision and commitment to this work every day and I can’t think of a more fitting way to honor their legacy than to name this room in their honor as the Melissa Lowe and Jory Hancock Dance Studio.”

Schulz closed with a few words of thanks to the School of Dance Advisory Board and its chair, Barbara Algire, for devising the idea of naming the room for Hancock and Lowe and for establishing the endowment.

“Barbara, thank you so much for your leadership. I’m grateful for your leadership and support in this project.”